Battle Royal Gets Biblical
I have never personally enjoyed the battle royal experience. Slinking around abandoned houses, looting them while watching your back seems more like a neurotic nightmare than a fun time, but there are those who do enjoy it. That is, of course, why Fortnite is currently the most popular video game in the world. However, I am a fan of the clever and irreverent webcomic Cyanide and Happiness. So when I found out that Galvanic Games created a battle royal experience based off of the Cyanide and Happiness universe, I couldn’t help but take a look. What I found was an interesting title that brings a new perspective to what everyone expects a battle royal game to be. This game is called Rapture Rejects.
The developers were kind enough to give me a copy of the open beta to try out for myself. As much as I dislike battle royal games, I found that this game offered something new and unique to the genre; and that includes being totally insane.
Here is my review of Rapture Rejects.
One Ticket to Paradise
Leave it to the minds over at Cyanide and Happiness to create a game about an iconic Biblical event. The Rapture has occurred! This is the apocalyptic event in which all of those people who receive God’s favor are taken into heaven, while those who do not are left on earth to burn in hellfire. Well, the people that are left think that sucks. So, they complain to God about his unfair treatment of them. God considers this and makes a deal with the remaining people; the last one to survive a battle to the death in the wastelands will be granted a free ticket to heaven. That’s when things get deadly.
The left-over people are now pitted in a death match where only one person will gain salvation through slaughter. To survive, they must fashion together a wide assortment of odd weapons and gadgets that will give them the upper hand against their fellow rejects. Weapons like toaster-shot guns filled with knives and such. Only one will survive in this bizarre deathmatch.
A Top-Down Take on Battle Royal
Rapture Rejects is a multi-player deathmatch at its core. There is no single player campaign at this point, and chances are that this game will not receive one. When a player starts the game, they are first allowed to create their own Cyanide and Happiness avatar. After going through a humorous customization process, which I will talk about later, the player is then put in queue for a match. All of the players who are matched together start in hub, much like in Fortnite, while the level is loaded. That is when the fun starts.
Players are placed on a large isometric cartoon rendering of a post-apocalyptic wasteland. The map can be rotated the suit the players’ needs. However, it always remains a top-down view. There are viewing stations dotted around the map that allows players to see a wider area around them. Along with that, there is ammunition and power-ups dotted around the map. Players can enter into buildings and wait for other others to pass by and spring a trap on them, or they can walk into the open with guns blazing. God will even drop special supply “arks” that contain weapons and gear.
This game has a unique dynamic that borrows from “the storm” principle of other battle royal games. Instead of there being a storm that encolses around the players, a ring of encroaching hellfire slowly covers the battlefield. On top of all of that, the land will change from time to time; pockets of lava will spring up and new obstacles will be created. This makes the situation of the game feel more dire, which works well in the “last days.”
The Cyanide and Happiness universe is known for delivering some of the oddest and most colorful characters on the web. Rapture Rejects allows for you to custom make your own character from the universe to fight in the hellscape. All of the stick-type figures are able to have their hair, skin color, facial features, and more altered to fit the style of the player. There is even an option for adding “boobs” or a “dong” to the character; you can have them both on the same character if you are into that.
The way that you earn more cosmetic items for your character is through a prize option called “Sinners and Winners.” Each time you make a kill or survive to a certain point, you are rewarded with tickets. Those tickets can be redeemed in Sinners and Winners for items that will add further customization options for your character.
Problems with Judgement Day
Cyanide and Happiness has garnered a huge cult following for its webcomics and short videos. However, that doesn’t mean that the game attached to it is perfect in its own right. Rapture Rejects is a top-down isometric twin-stick shooter battle royal title, and that is an unnecessary mouthful. What makes battle royal games fun are the 3D environments that allow for players to sneak up on each other and snipe them from a distance. That can not happen in this game because players can only see so far. There is a sniper rifle that shoots forks, but I found it practically worthless because I could not see my opponent off the screen to fire on him.
Rapture Rejects is a fresh and obscure title that does not host a large player base yet. Basically, there are not enough people playing this game yet to turn it into a fun battle royal experience. I have played over 30 rounds of this game. The largest number of players encountered in one round was 8. It is an online multiplayer game that no one plays, and that is not a good thing.
The Final Verdict
I am a university graduate with both a degree in Theology and Philosophy. As such, I was half-way expecting this game to push anti-Christian rhetoric down the throats of players and openly mock God and faith. Surprisingly, that is not what this game is about. Sure, the narrative is based around bad theology concerning the rapture, but that is just a tool that the developers used to create the action of the game. Despite my own views, I actually enjoyed playing it.
Rapture Rejects is a fun battle royal title that can double as a fun party game as well as a satire of the genre. It openly makes fun of the ridiculous nature of hunting for weapons and power-ups and doesn’t take itself too seriously. On top of that, it can be considered a truly interactive Cyanide and Happiness experience. Unfortunately, there are some major issues with the isometric gameplay and shooter limitations, as well as hosting a very small player base.
With all of these things considered, I am going to give Rapture Rejects a 6.5 F-Bombs out of 10. This game should not be disregarded because of its play style. Honestly, I believe that it is worth a try for everyone who enjoys Cyanide and Happiness. It is now available on Steam if you are willing to be “left behind.”
DVS Score: 6.5/10