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Play Rust on Mac Tutorial

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About Rust on Mac

Rust is a survival game playable on Mac through its official macOS version. Alternatively, you can also run Rust on your Mac using cloud gaming services such as GeForce or Boosteroid, in which case you won’t even need to download the game.

Rust is a multiplayer survival adventure game developed and published by Facepunch Studios. Rust was first released in its early-access state back in 2013 and had its official release in 2018. The game combines elements from other popular multiplayer titles such as DayZ, Player’s Unknown Battlegrounds, and Fortnite, Subnautica, and Ark: Survival Evolved, but has a distinct hostile competitive feel to it that separates it from those other games.

It’s all about survival

 When you join a new server in Rust, you don’t get a character-creation screen where you get to fine-tune the stats and appearance of whomever you’d be playing as. Instead, you get a randomly-generated character who starts their journey completely naked, with only a hard round rock and a torch at their disposal. As the game’s developers have stated it themselves, your one and only goal is to survive for another night, and survive you must.

As soon as you start, you need to start thinking about staying alive, and you need to make good use of those two starting objects that barely qualify as tools to begin the process of setting up a rudimentary camp that will protect you from the elements, wildlife, and other players. Early on into the game, you’d not be able to build and create much with what you are given, but through careful exploration, if you are lucky, you’d find blueprints for more advanced tools and structures as well as the resources to bring those blueprints to life. However, more often than not, you’d be coming across blueprints of something that’s useless to you rather than something that could help you in the long run. Yes, Rust is a rather grindy game that rewards players who sink a lot of time into it, while punishing those who expect to do well by spending no more than an hour a two a day playing the game.

Man vs nature

As is with most other survival games, one of the immediate dangers of being put into the world of Rust is the hostile environment. You must constantly be on guard for wildlife that can attack you, but you must also keep in check your various meters so that you don’t accidentally die of starvation or dehydration. The game is full of aggressive bears, wolves, and other dangerous critters that can turn you into their afternoon breakfast before you know it. However, you cannot afford to constantly stay barricaded in your camp, because you’d eventually run out of food or water. This forces you to go out into the open world and find something to eat and drink, but also expose yourself not only to animals that can attack you but to environmental hazards such as cold weather, bodies of water that can drown you, and radioactive zones.

Again, you’ve probably seen this in other games, as there’s nothing particularly unique about the challenges the player faces when trying to deal with the in-game environment. However, as we mentioned earlier, what sets Rust apart from other games of a similar genre is its competitive and oftentimes hostile multiplayer nature, and we mean this in the best way possible.

Man vs Man

When we say hostile, we do not mean to insult the player base of Rust, quite the contrary. It’s just that the gameplay mechanics of Rust are highly favorable to the type of player known as “griever” – in other words, if you like raiding and looting other player’s camps while the player’s character sleeps or ambushing your opponents right outside of their camps when they least expect you to rob them of their most treasured possessions, you may have a lot of fun here. Rust rewards gameplay styles that rely on being aggressive, cunning, and opportunistic, which it would be wise to approach other players in Rust with caution rather than open arms. This is not to say that alliances cannot be formed – quite the contrary, establishing a strong group of friendly players can help your clan get ahead of the competition much faster and is certainly a winning strategy. It’s just that it could be difficult to establish an alliance with other players unless you are already playing the game with friends, and the reason for that is the sheer temptation of being able to ambush someone and rob them of all their loot before they even know what hit them.

Unfortunately, the player vs player combat isn’t particularly impressive. While it’s serviceable, it doesn’t get close to what more combat-oriented multiplayer games such as PUBG or Fortnite have to offer. That said, when you get further into the game, you do gain access to more advanced tools and weaponry, including modern-day guns and even vehicles.

But is it good?

Rust is generally considered to be a good game, but a game that’s not for everywhere. It is quite apparent that Rust is more tailored towards players who are willing to spend a lot of their time playing Rust and who do not mind grinder games. This may make this game rather inaccessible to the more casual gamers, driving them off. However, if you are willing to spend the time and effort to learn the ins and outs of Rust, you are sure to have a lot of fun in the long run.

Is Rust on Mac?

Rust is on Mac – you can download its macOS version from Steam right now and start playing. Another possible way to run Rust on Mac is to use a cloud-gaming service or to install Windows on your Mac if you prefer the Windows version.

There aren’t that many PC games that are also available on Mac, so it’s a bit surprising that Rust, a game that has quite considerable system requirements (see below) can be played natively on a Mac computer. Still, if you want to play it, the macOS version of the game is there, on Steam, and can be downloaded by any Mac user who wants to play it, granted that the Mac meets the game’s requirements and has enough free storage space.

Can you play Rust on Mac?

Yes, you can play Rust on Mac – there are several methods to do this, with the main one being to simply download its macOS version. If you want to play the Windows version of Rust on your Mac, you can use a cloud-gaming service.

As you can see, there is no shortage of ways to run this game on a Mac machine, and each of the different methods has its pros and cons. For example, playing the game natively from macOS requires little to no setup, but requires considerable computing power that a lot of older Macs do not have. 

On the other hand, you can also choose to play the game through a cloud service such as Boosteroid or GeForce Now, which could allow you to play Rust even if your Mac doesn’t meet the game’s requirements. However, the catch here is that you need a very fast Internet connection, or else you’d get tons of lag, which could render the game unplayable.

Lastly, there’s always the option to first Windows on your Mac, either using a virtualization program such as Parallels or using Boot Camp Assistant, and then play the Windows version of Rust. Those two methods require more setup, a Mac that meets at least the recommended requirements of the game (for Parallels) or a Mac with a lot of free storage space (for Boot Camp Assistant). The positive side here is that you’d also be able to also play Windows-exclusive games that don’t have macOS versions on your Mac.

In the end, it’s up to you to pick the best option for you, so read through the instructions and explanations shown below, and try any of the suggested methods if you want to play Rust on your Mac.

Rust Set Up Methods

MethodsAdvantageDisadvantage
Cloud Gaming– No set-up required – Register and Play
– Access to a Library of over 70 top-rated free Games
– Smooth performance even on old Macs
– Monthly Fee
– Requires Decent Internet Connection
BootCamp– Free to use any time
– Windows 10 Environment
– Painful Setup
– Mediocre Performance
– Only Compatible with Intel Macs
Parallels Virtual Machine– Easy Set-up
– Adequate Performance
– Play almost any PC game
– Windows 11 environment
– Compatible with M1 and Intel Macs
– 14-day free trial
– Yearly Fee
Native Version – No Compatibility issues
– Optimized for Mac
– Slow Performance on old Macs

Rust with Cloud Gaming

Rust is now available to play on cloud gaming servers. This assures NO
compatibility issues while playing on your Mac as well as top-notch performance.

Step 1. Get Rust

You can go straight ahead and buy Rust from the Steam store. You can play the game right away after you have purchased it. If you feel the game graphics are under-performing, you can proceed to step two where you can upload the game to the cloud gaming library for better performance.

Step 2. Register and Play Rust on Boosteroid

All you need to do now is register for Boosteroid. This allows you to add Rust to their Cloud Gaming Library. Once signed in you can seamlessly play the game from your Mac or any other device.

When Registered you will have additional access to more than 70 top-rated games for free. Pricing varies depending on the subscription plan.

Play Rust on Mac M1 with Parallels

To run Rust on Mac M1, the easiest method is to simply download the macOS version of Rust from Steam. Two other options to run Rust on Mac M1 are to play it through a cloud-gaming service or create a Windows virtual machine using Parallels.

In this section, we will tell you about the Parallels method of playing Rust on your Mac, as the other mentioned methods are shown in different sections of this article.

Parallels is a virtualization program that will allow you to run Windows 11 on your Mac M1 while the computer is still in its macOS. With Parallels, Windows would basically be running as just another app – the Virtual Machine (VM) – on your Mac, and you’d be free to install Windows games within that app/virtual machine, including Rust. Now, Rust does have a macOS version and is also available on both the Boosteroid and GeForce Now gaming services, so there’s no need to get Windows on your Mac in order to play Rust. However, if you also want to be able to play other games on your Mac – ones that aren’t available for macOS – getting a Parallels VM would let you do that, while also allowing you to play the Windows version of Rust if you aren’t satisfied with its macOS version. It’s well known that the majority of PC games lack any form of macOS support, and it’s not uncommon for games that used to be available for Mac to get dropped from that platform. Parallels is a way to circumvent this inconvenience and gain the ability to play almost any PC game on your Mac.

The setup process of Parallels isn’t too complicated – here is a brief description of what you’d need to do:

  1. Download Parallels from its official site and install it on your Mac, providing it with all the permissions that it requires.
  2. Go to Microsoft’s Windows Insider Program page and register there with your Microsoft account (create a Microsoft account if you don’t have one). Then download the big ARM64 Insider Preview file from this Microsoft page (you must be logged in with your Microsoft account).
  3. Use the downloaded file to perform the creation of a Windows 11 VM though Parallels.
  4. Download Rust from Steam in the Parallels Windows 11 VM and play the game.

You will find more detailed instructions on creating a Windows VM on an Intel/M1 Mac in our How to use Parallels guide.

Download and Install Rust on Mac

To play Rust on Mac, you can download its OS X version from Steam, or you could run its Windows version through a cloud-gaming service. One other way to play the Windows version of Rust on Mac is to first install Windows on your Mac.

We already showed you one viable method of playing Rust on a Mac computer, that method being by using the Parallels virtualization program. There are, however, at least four more methods of running this game on a Mac, and we will show them to you down below.

Direct Install

One of the simplest methods of running Rust on a Mac machine is to simply go to Steam, and download it from there. The instructions below will give you a brief explanation of how to do this:

  1. If you don’t have a Steam registration, first go here to create one.
  2. Next, if you don’t already have the Steam client installed on your Mac, download its installation.dmg file from here, open the file, and install Steam by dragging its icon to the Applications folder icon.
  3. Next, start the Steam client, log in with your Steam account, and go to Store.
  4. Type Rust in the search bar, click on the game’s tile when it shows up, scroll down a little on the game’s page, and click on Add to Cart.
  5. On the next page, click Purchase for Myself, then choose a payment method of your preference, provide the required details, and perform the purchase.
  6. Finally, return to the game’s page in the Steam client, click Play Now, follow the prompts to install Rust, and then start the game from either its icon in the Applications folder or directly from the Steam client.

Rust with Boosteroid

Boosteroid is a type of gaming service that lets you play any game that’s available within its library on a remote gaming rig that your Mac connects to. With Boosteroid, you’d basically be playing Rust on your Mac, but the game would be actually be running on a remote machine and not on your Mac. This has a lot of advantages, such as not having to worry about the high system requirements of the game, since the game would technically not be running on your Mac. Additionally, while Rust does have a macOS version, many other games do not. However, through Boosteroid, you’d still be able to play them on your Mac. There are two subscription plans for Boosteroid and for both of them are paid. With either of the subscription plans, you’d be able to play any game from Boosteroid’s Library using the service’s gaming rigs, so long as you already own the game in question. There aren’t any other requirements – you don’t even need to download a client for Boosteroid, as the service lets you play the games in its library directly from your Safari or Chrome browser. Everything is really easy to set up, but we will still show you, in brief, the steps required to play Rust from within Boosteroid:

  1. First and foremost, you will need a Steam account to perform the next steps, and also you must have already purchased the game on Steam.
  2. Go to the Boosteroid site and create an account (you can also directly sign in with your Google, Apple ID, or Facebook account).
  3. Enter your account, click the search icon from the top, and search for Rust.
  4. Click on Rust’s tile when it shows up as a search result, and then click Play on the game’s page.
  5. Click Subscribe when told that you need a paid subscription to play, then choose your subscription plan, enter the required payment details, and pay for the subscription.
  6. Next, before the game starts, you will be asked to connect to your Steam account, so go ahead and do that by entering your Steam credentials.
  7. After that, the game should launch automatically, and you should be able to start playing. You can toggle full screen on and off using the Ctrl + Command + F keyboard combination.

Rust with GeForce Now

GeForce Now is another cloud-gaming service that also lets you play any game available in its library from your Mac on a remote machine. The only requirements are that you have a GeForce Now registration, have downloaded the GeForce Now client, and that you own the game that you want to play or that the game in question is free. Here are our brief instructions on how to set up and use GeForce Now:

  1. First, create a Steam account and purchase Rust on Steam.
  2. Next, continue by opening the site of GeForce Now, clicking Join Now.
  3. Now, choose a subscription plan and register on GeForce Now (obviously, provide payment details if you’ve chosen one of the paid subscription plans).
  4. After you register with your email address, go yo your email provider, open the newly-received letter from GeForce Now, and activate your new account by confirming your email.
  5. Next, go back to the starting of GeForce Now, click on Join Now again, select the subscription plane you’ve already selected, and then use the credentials of your newly-created account to sing in.
  6. Once you enter your GeForce Now account, select the GeForce Now section from the top, then scroll down to the Quick Links box, and select Download Apps.
  7. On the following page, select the Mac version of the GeForce Now app, download it, then open the GeForce Now installation .dmg file, and install the app.
  8. Open the GeForce Now client, log in with your account, and then search for Rust in the search bar.
  9. Click on the Rust game when it appears, then click on Play, then click Continue, and wait for your Internet connection to be scanned. Even if you get a warning that your connection may not be fast enough, you can ignore it and still Continue to the game, but be warned that performance may not be very good.
  10. Before the game starts, you will be asked to connect to your Steam account, so go ahead and do that by entering your Steam account’s credentials.
  11. Next, the game should start, and you can begin playing.

Rust with Boot Camp

This is the final possible method of playing Rust on a Mac computer that we will be talking about on this page. Of all the methods we’ve mentioned, this one takes the most time to set up and is likely the least efficient, yet it’s still something you can try if for some reason the other methods don’t satisfy you. The one advantage of using the Boot Camp method is that you’d be able to play other games, ones that don’t have macOS versions, on your Mac, through the Windows 10 partition you’d create with this method. Therefore, if you also want to be able to play games on your Mac that don’t have macOS support, this method could help you do that (note, however, that the same applies for the Parallels method explained above).

Lastly, bear in mind that this method is only usable on Intel Macs, as the Boot Camp Assistant application needed to perform the Windows 10 installation isn’t available for M1 Macs.

Now, if you want to try installing Windows 10 on your Mac to play the Windows version of Rust (as well as, potentially, other Windows games), visit our guide on How to Install Windows 10 on an Intel Mac using Boot Camp Assistant.

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