Worms Rumble by Team 17 -- Last Worm Standing

A new Worms game has hit the street, and as a long-time fan of the Worms series, I gotta tell ya, it’s a ton of fun. There are several key differences between this game and prior entries, but at the end of the day it’s got the right feel, the right attitude, and it’s the right price: $15.

Here’s a brief list of differences between this entry and the classic games in the series. First of all, this isn’t strictly a 2D game with 2D art, it’s a 2.5D game like Shadow Complex, or Trials HD. Another big difference is that the game is real time, not turn-based. Also, as of right now there’s no environmental destruction (and no idea if it will be on future maps). So think of it like a 2.5D shooter, except with a better variety of weapons than your typical shooter. And though the game doesn’t offer nearly the weapon & tool selection of older games in the series, the ones that did carry over feel great to use and very familiar.

Off the top of my head it’s got the Bazooka, Assault Rifle, Hand Gun, Grenade, Holy Hand Grenade, Sheep Launcher, Bananas, Baseball Bat, a few different traversal tools, and some other stuff I can’t remember off the top of my head.

The game also offers tons of Worm (your character) customization, including voice, accessories, worm color, and banners. Many of the options offered are brought in from the classic games, with a few familiar voice packs and accessories along the way.

Team 17 has this to say about the game:

Welcome to Worms Rumble , the first ever Worms game to feature real-time combat! Dive into epic 32-player Battle Royale and Deathmatch modes with full multi-platform cross-play as you fight to be the last worm standing!

Worms Rumble will be fully-supported by ongoing content updates including new arenas, customisations, game modes and more…

I don’t own a Playstation, so I’m playing on Steam, but it does offer cross-play. And while I did play with a KB/Mouse initially, I find a controller works much better for me, especially as it’s real time. And I’ve only played one game so far after playing around in the tutorial, and as a general fan of deathmatch modes in games, this one has been right up my alley.


This is free on PS+ right now as well.

Goodbye!

It’s hard to fathom Worms without turns or environmental destruction.

I know, right? Half the fun was crazy maps and kamikaze digging through some part of the geometry to drop a sheep on someones head.

Trying a real-time version seems reasonable to me. I mean, the original Worms mechanics were solved and basically finished over a decade ago. They never really found anything to add that didn’t end up making the game worse.

But no environmental destruction? Really? Even if you don’t have the tech to do fully destroyable 3D, you can still put a bunch of objects and obstructions in the level to annihilate. If the battlefield doesn’t look like (many) bombs went off at the end is it really a Worms game?

You know what would be a cool hook?

Have the maps be some kind of Fez like rotatable 3D. That would be quite unique, and lead to some fun trick shots.

I might have just started playing Fez for the first time this week though, which probably colors this idea.

It’s pretty. But RTS? No sale.

I was always disappointed they didn’t pursue the physics stuff more. They made a first step with Revolution and water. Noita feels like a logical conclusion to that kind of simulated chaos and I can imagine it being a blast with Worms. I mean, Scorched Earth did some of that way back and that was the Mother of All Games.

No couch play as far as I can tell. :(

This just makes me want to go back and play Rocket Riot again. Real-time Worms could work for me, but why not still have destructible environments?

My current worm:

I haven’t unlocked any cosmetics yet, so I’m using a variety of some of the default cosmetics that every player starts with. I’ve got hearty, pink worm-flesh, a hearty headband, hearty glasses, and I got to choose my teeth. Obviously the most important part of a young worm’s life is finding a style that fits them, and along with the Maniacal Evil voice, the hearts help complete the ensemble.

Okay, so I’ve played maybe 8-10 rounds so far (there’s probably a stats screen somewhere I’m too lazy to find, who knows). All players start off at level 1 and have access to Deathmatch mode (or free-for-all for you n00bs out there who aren’t familiar with classic FPS terminology from the 90s). Players can unlock last team standing at level 5, and Last Worm Standing at level 10 (EDIT: Actually, it turns out those are just the recommended levels for those places, you can play them at any time). But I’ve always had a love for deathmatch, so I’m not sure how much I’ll play those other modes. All I know is that in Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare, it was 100% a DM game for me, and I put gobs and gobs of hours into that.

The more that I play the game the fonder I grow of it. I’m sure some day I will find things to hate, but I’m still in the honeymoon phase. The game just feels good, and that can’t be understated. The traversal and maneuverability during fire fights is quick and reactive, the gunplay is as responsive as a good twin-stick shooter, and one of the best feelings in the world is squaring off against another player and using your weapons and terrain to your advantage to take them out before they do the same to do.

Except for specific scenarios, the time to kill in this game high enough that two players have the time to dance and maneuver around each other while trying to take the other out. From bouncing off walls, to bounding across the map, to playing cat & mouse in and around various obstacles and hiding spots, to letting the occasional grenade or banana fly, the firefights are fast and furious, but also very rewarding to those who master movement as much as aim. And if you run out of ammo, well, you’ve got a bat and can send some sucker fuh-lying.

As for crossplay, based on the 8-10 games I’ve played so far, I can say that almost every lobby has been 90% Playstation gamers and only 2-3 Steam players per match. I think most games I’ve played have had between 25-30 players each, and of those, only 2 or 3 of us are ever steam players at any one time. And based on the leaderboards at the end of the match, so far platform does not at all seem to affect placement. And if the other Steam gamers are anything like myself, they’re using controllers anyway.

At the moment this is exactly the game I’ve been looking for. 10 minute matches, a large number of players. Grace weapons instead of hitscan nonsense, and high enough time to kill to engage in some sublime firefights with other acrobatic worms.

This is a real time action shooter with Worms, and its a game I didn’t even know I wanted till they made it.

Makes sense since the game was free with PS+.