Rage’s The Scorchers DLC is a little late to the party, but it was worth the wait.
Rage, the latest game from legendary game studio id Software, was released in October. No, not two months ago October- October of last year. This first single-player DLC expansion, The Scorchers, seems a little late, but those who had fun with Rage last year will find a lot to love about this expansion.
Smartly, id Software has removed the finality of the game’s original ending- those who finished Rage last year will be able to continue where they left off and finish side missions, as well as begin The Scorchers’ missions. You can use all the awesome weapons you’ve collected during your run through the main campaign- though I was forced to start anew from the beginning of the game since my save file was lost when switching computers; I thought that Rage utilized Steam’s Cloud feature, but I was wrong. If you haven’t picked up Rage since last year, you might be a bit confused at first, as the game doesn’t give you a very clear idea of where you need to go to start the DLC. Even once I remembered where the Hagar camp was, I ran around in circles until finding a previously inaccessible door leading into the caves on the Hagar’s ranch. If you have to start from the beginning again like I did, take note that you’ll be stopped in between a few of the DLC missions to complete main story missions- you’ll have to gain access to areas like Wellspring to continue, which can take a bit of time.
Once I found where I needed to go though (I suggest constantly stocking up on ammo throughout this DLC), I got right back in the swing of blasting through muties. If you loved the FPS action in Rage, there’s plenty of stuff to kill here, and the environments are much more varied than I remembered while playing the main campaign. You’ll even see some waterfalls and beautiful vegetation in the caves- a refreshing change of scenery from the barren, dusty wasteland.
You’ll quickly gain access to the Nail gun, a badass new weapon that works a bit like a submachine gun, and also has the ability to shoot rebar. Watching an enemy get hit with rebar and impaled to a wall never got old- there’s even an achievement for doing it. I also enjoyed the Nail gun’s other fire mode, the Rail gun- which I didn’t know existed until the final boss fight. I wish I’d discovered it earlier, as it packs a lot of power and can see enemies through walls. In fact, I had completely forgotten just how fun the combat in Rage was. The weapons all feel great, and the way enemies react to being shot and dodging around bullets is fantastic. This level of quality animation is something I’ve yet to see another FPS match.
The titular Scorchers are new the faction to battle here (besides the mutants). They sport a tribal theme and they’re generally pretty fun to fight- most of the enemies will be wearing jetpacks, and there’s big brutes with flamethrowers. This combination can lead to some pretty intense gun fights, and watching the guy with the flamethrower explode was expectedly awesome. The final boss fight of the DLC is against a giant airship, while fighting a swarm of the standard enemies. It definitely got my heart pounding. Once you complete the DLC you’ll be award with the Trophy Room, a new room in Wellspring with your new friend Sarah from the DLC. The walls will be adorned with trophies you have won throughout your time in Rage.
If 2-3 more hours of time in Rage’s wasteland sounds fun to you, then The Scorchers is worth its $5 price point. It was just what I needed to get back into a game that I had put down a while back due to a lost save file. If you still have a copy of Rage, I highly suggest you pick up The Scorchers, buy a ton of ammo, save often, and have a blast.