Let us discuss for a moment some of the cooler types of ammo and one weapon in particular. The Desert Striker Crossbow: Not only is this weapon cool to look at, itís got a few useful ammo types that make it a must have in a fire-fight. Normal crossbow bolts are powerful enough and the crossbow is quiet for stealth, then you have dynamite bolts, electro bolts (fantastic for groups of enemies in water) and my favourite Ė mind control bolts. They embed in and then let you control the poor target until they explode or you detonate them.
Every weapon in RAGE is balanced really well, the ammo types actually make sense and they are useful to deal with different kinds of enemies, from weak bandit types to the heavy armoured psychos and other things. Fat Mammas are fantastic pistol rounds that really bring on the pain for your enemies.
The arsenal builds as you play the game and RAGE offers weapons, gadgets and other things as you continue the story.
You can get a lot of fun out of RAGEís shooter aspect and it is pretty badass when youíre dodging gunfire, snapping off a few shots here and then and retreating to cover.
RAGE handles health loss by letting you regenerate, due to some little machines in your bloodstream. You also have a defibrillator built into your chest, which can revive you upon death once you play a little mini-game to restart your heart. It has the added effect of stunning nearby foes too, and it can sometimes take them out of the fight altogether. Once youíre defibbed though, itís not a get out of death free card, it needs to recharge...so if youíre pegged again before it has Ė youíre dead, reload save. Bandages can be used if your regen isnít quick enough to help save your life.
The HUD isnít cluttered and thereís even a small mini-map when youíre out in the Wasteland. I note, this game is old skool Ė once a job is over youíll need to remember where in the Wasteland the place you visited was, like in the days before we had mini-maps and were handheld through games.
So thatís the shooting aspect. Itís really good fun too, because the enemies are not predictable...Iíll cover that in the AI part of the review.LITELITE-RPG
RAGE is a shooter, but it does owe some of its mechanics to RPG-LITE systems. It has an inventory where you store all your objects and assign quick use gadgets etc. It has a weapon upgrade screen, where you can see weapon upgrades and switch weapons, ammo types and the like. Thereís an engineering screen where you can build a plethora of cool things to help you survive, from gadgets to bandages and even health increasing formulas. Thereís a job screen, which is basically a quest log and so on.
There are various shops that will buy junk off you that you find in the game, or sell you things like engineering recipes, gadgets, ammo, ingredients etc.
There are NPCs, people you can talk to for information or jobs. Thereís a job board where you can pick up some pretty simple but rewarding quests and whilst there are no dialogue trees it is definitely RPG-like.
In fact if you want to get everything out of RAGE, you need to invest quite a bit of time into that side of the game. Talk to everyone and you never know what youíre going to earn as the reward.
There are mini-games, from mumbly-peg (thatís five finger fillet to you and me), to a simple game of chance and the rather deep and addictive: Magic The Gathering style card game dubbed Rage Frenzy. Where you literally build a deck and try to win...this can soak up quite a bit of time if youíre into it.
There are races, which you can use to upgrade your buggy/vehicle and earn new rewards. The racing is pretty deep and there are a lot of upgrades to get if you want a truly rugged machine capable of tearing bandit cars a new one.