The term “force wipe” has become commonplace within the survival genre of video games. Whether it’s Escape from Tarkov, Rust, or something newer like V Rising, wipes are a way of keeping players interested in the game while also not allowing any one player to rise to dominance on a server for a prolonged period of time. The name is a perfect explainer of what a force wipe is in games; it’s a complete wipe of the server that the developers impose upon the players. However, newcomers to games that participate in force wipes might feel lost when they hear the term or experience its consequences. This happens in Rust especially, as the near-decade old game is still receiving an influx of new players every month.
There are a few different reasons for a force wipe in survival games especially. The first is to clear the server so it doesn’t get overloaded with players or buildings/structures on the map. This can prevent the server from crashing. Even though the Rust developers, Facepunch Studios, have been adding more and more servers to accommodate all of the new players coming to the game, server crashes can still happen. If you’re a newer Rust player or one that needs to know when a force wipe occurs, then you’ve come to the right place.
When do Rust force wipes happen?
Knowing when a force wipe happens in Rust is one of the most important elements of the game. A force wipe completely erases everything from the map. This means that anything players built, acquired, stole, crafted, etc. will be gone after a force wipe occurs. Of course, this forces players to restart and begin the crafting process over again. The only difference is that players might be more knowledgeable after a force wipe happens, so they won’t need to take as long building certain things in-game.
Force wipes in Rust occur once a month. This always happens when the game is being updated. Luckily, the developers at Facepunch Studios keep a tight schedule, so players can know exactly when their current server will be wiped clean. Force wipes in Rust occur on the first Thursday of every month. Even if the month begins on a Thursday, the force wipe will still occur on that day. The update that contains the force wipe starts at 11 AM PT / 2 PM ET and is usually over within an hour or so.
If you’re thinking of starting your own private server to avoid the force wipe, the developers have you beat. The wipe affects every single server that’s active in Rust. However, if you are a host on a private server, you actually have the ability to force wipe the server much more often than once per month. Force wipes also apply to those both on console and PC.
While a force wipe might sound like a negative aspect of Rust, the reasoning behind them is sound. When a server is wiped, it allows active players to rebuild their structures and craftable items while also getting rid of any structure that was built by a player who might not even be on the server anymore. If you’re a veteran of Rust, then you know the process of force wipes all too well. New players might find the experience a bit jarring at first, especially as you’re starting to learn the ins and outs of the game. Over time, though, you’ll simply get used to the wipes happening on the first Thursday of every month.
If you are a new player in Rust and feeling a little overwhelmed, be sure to check out our list of beginner tips so you can survive your first few nights with less stress.