The RUST Prototype Pickaxe is a skin available for the Pickaxe, released as part of Facepunch’s General Permanent Store items with the Lumberjack DLC in the October 2022 The Lumberjack update. It’s original bundled sale price is listed at $12.99 USD and, like all other permanent item store items, isn’t available for resale on the steam marketplace.
While possessing the exact same collections rates and function as the pickaxe, the prototype pickaxe brings a rather unique, almost futuristic aesthetic to the node striking experience. The appearance is very professional-grade, looking more properly manufactured than most item skins available. As a real world comparison, it most closely resembles a Geological Hammer.
As its base item is not a default blueprint, the prototype pickaxe would not be available until players with the DLC were to unlock it, either via the research system or the tier 1 workbench tech tree. Its primary use is to gather Stones, Metal Ore or Sulfur Ore in RUST. It requires no fuel to operate but takes consistent durability loss while being used to hit nodes or any other entity.
The prototype pickaxe requires players to manually strike nodes to harvest their resources. It is quite normal to use a pickaxe as a melee weapon, sometimes going so far as to use it as a soft-side raiding tool. It would be acceptable for use with an Ore Gathering Tea due to its resource gathering capacity as a mid-tier tool.
In addition to being an in game Skin, it is also directly spawnable as its own entity type by server administrators from the F1 Console.