Why Is Rust So Popular Again?

With Rust seeing a sudden surge in popularity, we see the true power and influence of Twitch.

Why Is Rust So Popular Again?

The Popularity Spike on Twitch

Rust has been a part of multiplayer gaming since its Early Access release eight years ago. According to Facepunch founder and the developer of Garry’s Mod, Garry Newman, Rust is now experiencing a new surge of popularity, having garnered more than $1 million twice in seven days on Steam.

Rust is the official “most viewed game on Twitch...

As this goes to press, Rust is the official “most viewed game on Twitch” with a total of 717,000 viewers. In fact, on January 7, 2021, the survival game "doubled its player count record” and exceeded the previous one set four days before that. This surge is largely credited to numerous popular Twitch Streamers.

What Exactly Is Rust?

For those readers not in the know, Rust is a survival-based, multiplayer-only video game on Microsoft Windows, macOS, and will be launching on consoles in 2021.

[Rust] will be launching on consoles in 2021.

Players generally begin, well, naked and with nothing more than a torch and a rock. The game’s moment-to-moment play includes scavenging and collecting resources to create more advanced weapons, ammo, and other things such as food to aid players in surviving the game’s hostile environment on a procedurally-generated map wherein users are able to attack other players however they see fit.

Rust | Credit: Facepunch Studios

In essence, playing this game is similar to playing an exceptionally violent version of player-versus-player Minecraft. Gamers had early access to this game as far back as December 2013 via Steam. Rust has racked up a lot of support from its development team since that first early access release. For example, the Facepunch Studios group promoted a near-famous fully featured 1.0 Rust release in February 2018.

Rust | Credit: Facepunch Studios

Why the Sudden Surge in Popularity?

Rush is having what many gamers say is an Among Us style surge in popularity. This significant increase in the game's popularity is said to be largely due to members of the Twitch community, notably OfflineTV. OfflineTV is a popular entertainment group of various content creators based in Los Angeles, California.

[Twitch Streamers] have garnered Rust more than 1 million viewers, and that has translated into more player interest.

The group features some of the most well-known streamer names on Twitch such as Disguised Toast, Myth, Pokimane, Shroud, and XQc. Their streams often attract large audiences for the games they are playing. They have garnered Rust more than 1 million viewers, and that has translated into more player interest.

The Rust Server and More

When they decided to create a separate, private Rust game server open only to their specific group and an additional 50 Twitch streamers, this also added to the game’s popularity. Plus, the game's development team has also contributed to Rust’s recent rise. Facepunch has been regularly updating Rust and releasing new content since it was first launched.

Rust | Credit: Facepunch Studios

The game’s recent increase in popularity rocketed Rust into the top 10 of both Steam’s Top 10 sales charts and Twitch viewership. The game was also rated for consoles by the Entertainment Software Rating Board, which also helps in drawing in new players. Finally, current worldwide curfews and stay-at-home orders mean even more gamers are discovering Rust. Are you a Rust player? Let us know what you think in our comments section.