Try Worms Rumble's real-time deathmatches for free this weekend

Worms Rumble
(Image credit: Team 17)

I'm not sure who, exactly, Worms Rumble is for. But whether you're excited by Team 17's real-time, battle royale earthworm deathmatch or just morbidly curious to see the series skew so far from its roots, this weekend's open beta will let you indulge your curiosity ahead of the game's December 1 launch.

Ditching series staples like turn-based exploding and fully destructible scenery, Worms Rumble instead sets the soil-munchers loose in a 32-player battle royale. You're still lobbing bazooka rounds and Holy Hand Grenades at each other, but without the benefit of a leisurely countdown to let you line up the perfect shot. 

From the looks of a new trailer, it seems like the arsenal has been dramatically stripped down. Thank goodness you can still set a sheep loose on the field, at least.

Our Fraser went in expecting the worst from Worms Rumble earlier this year—and while its slapstick real-time fights did eventually grow on him, he still reckoned it "gets rid of too much classic Worms magic" to really feel like a worthwhile successor.

"I'm glad Team17 doesn't feel beholden to tradition, but the scope of the changes and the features that have been yanked out makes Rumble feel like more like a spin-off than a new Worms, and even Worms Crazy Golf has more in common with the rest of the series"

Personally, I've always been a bit more receptive to the black sheep of the series (Worms 3D is a good game, fight me), and wonder if I might be more receptive to this experimental new wriggler. If you're just as curious about whether Worms Rumble can pull off its contentious concept, the beta is free to download on Steam until 12am PT / 8am GMT this Monday, November 9.

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.