The Windows PC game will be coming to Steam's formal marketplace as a completed title on February 8, 2018. This is a little more than four years since its initial launch in Early Access in December of 2013.
Developer Facepunch Studios has been sure to make it clear that while even though the game is leaving early access, it's not "done."
Don't think of this as us claiming that the game is done. Think of this as us saying that if Early Access didn't exist we'd have released the game on Steam by now.
I can hardly imagine what it would be like if the Rust trend only now started.
What does this mean for the game, though? Now that it is no longer "Early Access," the developers will be taking the focus away from pushing new features and content and be focusing more on increasing the game's stability. To solidify this plan, Facepunch Studios will be changing how they handle their update system for the game.
The game will now be receiving monthly updates, referred to as the "main branch." These will be stable and cleaned up changes to the game. There will also be a "staging branch" version of the game available to those who opt for it. This branch will be updated daily so that the changes for the main branch can be hashed out before implementation.
Another significant change is the price. Once Rust goes gold, the game will cost $34.99, about 15 dollars more than the early access price. You can read more about the transition on Rust's website.