Worms Rumble is a spin-off of the Worms series and unlike its predecessors is a real-time action game, rather than the turn based tactical action in previous game. The game was released in December 2020 and is available for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation.
The most significant difference in Worms Rumble compared to that of the rest of the Worms series, is that there is no turn based play within the games. Instead, players compete against other players in modes such as Team Deathmatch, Deathmatch, Last Worm Standing and Last Squad Standing, having total ability to control their character around the map under no time limit. There is also a training mode within the game, which helps players get to grips with basic gameplay and test the assortment of available weapons.
Out of the four online game modes, Team Deathmatch and Deathmatch are undoubtedly the more popular of the four. The two Deathmatch modes aren’t anything we haven’t already experienced before from an online PvP, but they play well and you can have great fun amidst the chaos of 32 players attempting to pummel each other with baseball bats!
Last Worm Standing and Last Squad Standing are Worms’ answers to battle royale and whilst these modes can prove to be fun, they simply don’t compare to other battle royale games. Plus, with few players actually playing these modes, often the games can end up being short and feel a little underwhelming, with a game lobby often at less than half capacity. That being said, I did get a super easy win on my first game of Last Worm Standing because there were only 6 players within the game – so I can’t have too many complaints!
In terms of gameplay, the real-time action as opposed to turn based actually plays really well. With the ability to roll around the map, zip-wire from different points and use power-ups like jetpacks and grapple guns, moving around the map is seamless and I’ve enjoyed some of my best moments within the game simply running around the map. As well as the ever useful power-ups, there is also a host of weapons Worms fans of old will be familiar with; Bazooka’s, Holy Hand-Grenades and the infamous Sheep Launcher.
When loading into a new game, players are given a stock gun to start each life with, usually either a Hand Cannon, Shotgun or Assault Rifle. Players can then pick up additional weapons and items scattered around the map and this random loot system works well, giving players a near enough equal chance of survival from the off. The weapons available in game all play very differently and this is emphasised with the haptic feedback on the PS5 controller when using each gun which feels brilliant.
The main menu will be very familiar if you’ve played any battle royale game in recent years, but in fairness, there is plenty of customisation available within the menus to alter your Worms’ in game appearance. Contrasting the all too familiar menu UI is some fantastic, inventive map designs. Each map is themed and have a number of unique features that set them apart, my favourite being the space station featuring a giant rocket that spontaneously launches mid-game! My only complaint about the level design is the lack of deformable landscape which has been a staple in Worms games of old!
Currently Worms Rumble is priced at £10.99 on the PlayStation store which to me is simply too expensive. I picked up Worms Rumble for free as part of PlayStation Plus back in December and in all honesty I do think this game should just be free to play. So many battle royale games are free to play, with additional cosmetic items available to purchase, and I believe this would suit Worms Rumble to the ground. As a consequence, we get game with a lot of promise that ends up with a severe lack of content and as a result, a limited number of active players.
Worms Rumble shows huge potential for real-time Worms action with its chaotic gameplay and innovative level design, but falls short with a distinct lack of content.