While Hurtworld has not officially ceased development, it appears only one developer (believed to be the founder) remains at Bankroll Studios and that the majority of the small team left just before or just after the launch of Hurtworld in December 2019, with a single developer being all that remained by the team at the time of Hurtworld’s January 2020 update.
This update was ironically both the first update following its launch and the last update Hurtworld received before the developer maintained complete radio silence until March 2023, which saw Hurtworld receive an update to its anti-cheat software.
What makes this silence all the more curious is that shortly before disappearing in January 2020, the developers posted a blog talking about an upcoming content patch that would be fairly sizable by Hurtworld standards; however, 3+ years later, this update (or any other) has yet to materialise.
Hurtworld is one of just a few games to offer players two versions of the game for use on self-hosted servers, with some players opting to play the older (and in the mind of some superior) Hurtworld V1 over the more readily available Hurtworld V2.
While hurtworld maintains a few official servers, the unofficial server community has kept the game alive long after the developers essentially vanished and updates ceased following its anti-climatic launch in December 2019.
While several server providers are catering to the remaining Hurtworld community, the only real option for players who want to engage with a highly populated server is the twin HurtFun servers, which exist in a weird limbo between being official and unofficial servers, despite being privately owned and operated and offering a selection of mods and VIP perks that are not available in the core game.
The vast majority of remaining Hurtworld players do not speak English, and it’s far more common to run into a Chinese or Russian player than it is a European or American player.
While some claim 99% of the remaining players do not speak English, from my interactions with the community, that figure appears slightly exaggerated, and I would estimate that roughly 80% of the community does not speak English as a first language, while roughly 70% does not speak English.
Hurtworld, from inception, was intended to be a Rust clone with a hardcore focus and very low hardware requirements, and honestly, the developers succeeded at that mission.
The problem with this, however was that Rust progressed massively during the six years that Hurtworld remained in early access, and by the time Hurtworld was released, Rust had not only released to widespread acclaim but had become the definitive pvp survival game in the eyes of many, all but ensuring that Hurtworld, as a partially developed clone of a much earlier version of Rust had no chance of competing with the most popular game in the genre.
Despite its sizable map and wide variety of craftable items, Hurtworld weighs in at just 1.5GB, making it one of the smallest, if not the smallest, survival games on Steam.
This is undoubtedly only possible due to its focus on performance over visual fidelity, and while I would like higher-quality textures, in a game like this, sacrifices must be made.
While Hurtworld isn’t very pretty to look at, it runs incredibly well on a wide range of devices and is easily downloaded on even the slowest DSL connections.
While originally, some servers reset only once a month or longer, the majority of the remaining unofficial servers reset once a week, meaning that players who cannot play every single day or who, for whatever reason, cannot play on reset day have little chance of making meaningful progression before the following destroys what little progress they had made.
While I believe there is a place for servers that reset once a week, monthly resets would be more casual player-friendly, or failing that, bi-weekly resets as a compromise between hardcore and cause players, ensuring there was enough time for casual players to progress between wipes not to get frustrated, and that wipes were close enough together to avoid hardcore players becoming bored.
While Hurtworld’s map is covered with rocks and trees, players will need to search far and wide for items that can be harvested, with the overwhelming majority of trees and rocks being part of the map itself and not available for harvesting.
In addition, harvest nodes stick out like a sore thumb, with ore nodes and fallen trees often being entirely different in shape, colour and quality than the surrounding landscape.
This is especially noticeable with ore nodes, which rest on the ground like partially melted, brightly-coloured ice cream cones and rarely mesh well with their surroundings.
Hurtworld offers the following matchmaking options:
Hurtworld is unrated and contains the following: