Part of the sustained interest in butt naked survival belligerence sim, Rust, is developer Facepunch’s uncanny ability to keep the game fresh and interesting. The main way they achieve this is through monthly updates that over the years have charted Rust’s evolution from a rather bare bones undead-infested multiplayer experience to a rich tactical title marrying both PvP and PvE elements to great effect.
The additions are varied to say the least, so much so they can be difficult to predict by their aleatory nature. We’ve had a safe haven outpost guarded by hyper-aggressive NPCs, an abandoned rocket launch site roamed by a massive tank named Bradley, and a bandit run swamp casino among others.
Yesterday’s update exemplifies this ably implemented merry go round of new content with the addition of none other than hot air balloons. In true Rust style, these makeshift eyesores are banged together using familiar scrap components and require low grade fuel to fly.
They can be found scattered around the map in flatter areas and once fueled up can be gently raised into the air. The hot air balloon houses a small storage space and can transport up to 5 players in relative comfort. In keeping with real-world hot air balloon navigation, direction of travel is dependent on the prevailing winds so you will have ‘to find a pocket of air moving in the direction you wish to go and attempt to stay in it by maintaining that altitude. If you’re rising too far above the pocket, disengage the engine and allow the hot air to dissipate. This will lead you to lose altitude. Re-engage the engines to rise again, and rinse and repeat until you reach your destination’.
Plain sailing isn’t on the cards though as the update also introduces anti-aircraft SAM missile sites perfectly suited to targeting airborne balloons. Damage from a SAM causes a hot air balloon to lose altitude, though it is repairable with cloth. The SAM site is a craftable item requiring SAM ammunition and is also found perched atop the launch site. Note it is automated and will fire at anything airborne regardless of whether its yours or not. Best to disarm it before taking to the skies then.
Facepunch have warned that the hot air balloons have been a major undertaking and as such are subject to bugs, the most blatant of which is one present in the patch notes and one Facepunch are fully aware of. Check it out below. Facepunch recommend not raiding with it quite yet for obvious reasons.
The patch also rejigs the scientist-controlled cargo ship and the way loot spawns there, nerfs the tactical glove from 100% aim sway reduction to a more reasonable 80%, and fixes the radiation exploit.