Someday Rust players will be able to raid other servers by boat

(Image credit: Facepunch Studios)

Survival game Rust takes place on an island surrounded by ocean, but what happens if you hop on a boat and head out to sea? Right now, your boat despawns and you get dunked in the water to die, though that will apparently change at some point in the future. 

Rust developers are working on a server transition system wherein reaching the edge of the map will result not in death but in crossing over into a different server. It sounds like it could be the beginning of an interconnected Rust server-verse made up of many islands instead of just a single one.

According to the delightful and well-informed Rust YouTuber ShadowFrax, and as seen in the Facepunch commits log, when this feature arrives players will be able to get into any water vehicle—boat, RHIB, kayak, even an inner tube—and motor or paddle their way to the edge of the map. There they'll transition to a different Rust server, arriving out in the ocean as if they were simply reaching a new island.

This server transition feature has apparently been on Facepunch Studios' wishlist for quite a while—according to ShadowFrax, Facepunch founder Garry Newman put the concept on a development roadmap for Rust more than seven years ago. It's an exciting prospect, too. Off the top of my head I can't really think of another online game that handles server transitions in any other way than a traditional server browser besides Ark: Survival Evolved (edit: I've since been informed by several people that Studio Wildcard's other survival game, Atlas, lets you sail ships to other servers) and it would turn Rust from a game about people brutally killing each other on an island into a game about people brutally killing each other on a series of islands spread out over a vast ocean.

We don't have all the details yet, and this new server transition system hasn't made it to the staging branch, so there aren't any firsthand reports about how it all works. We know that initially it will only apply to certain official servers that share the same server wipe schedule, so you won't have to worry about a heavily armed goon from a community server with jacked-up XP multipliers driving a boat over to your island and raiding you while you're still banging on trees with a rock after a wipe.

We also don't know what you'll be able to bring with you, or how much of it, to other servers, but presumably you'll be able to take whatever you can fit into a boat's storage chest and your own pockets. I'm also curious if you'll be able to hitch a ride to a different server on one of those AI-controlled cargo ships (which currently kill you with radiation if you're standing on one when it leaves the map).

Hopefully more information about the new server transition system will be forthcoming soon—I've emailed Facepunch Studios and will let you know if I learn anything else.

Christopher Livingston
Staff Writer

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.