Feb 5, 2011I was looking forward to playing this game as I have never seen one with the scope of magnitude that the map apparently had. but when I began, I realized that there is soooooo much area of the map empty, it became clear to me that no intelligent design went into this other than to make it huge just for the sake of being huge. yay, we've got the biggest map of any racing game out there! too bad there's barely anything IN IT! the AI of the cars you will race against quickly go between completely retarded to absolute and complete cheating **** how a car can be the same model and make of what you're using and be miles away in front of you within a minute is rediculous. this game was a huge mistake.… Expand
Jun 10, 2011Ah fuel. It's fun, that is no doubt. The absolute best part about it is the large, expansive world to just play around in, exploring one of the most beautiful landscapes video gaming has to offer. However, it is technically a race game. The problem is that the actual racing is a abysmal, frustrating chore required to unlock the expansive world.
Why is the racing so abysmal? The game cheats. The game cheats horridly.
How does the game cheat? Let me count the ways.
1. Even if you have the fastest vehicle in the game, it is impossible to accelerate faster than the pack, you have to wait for the individual members to reach their own "max speed" and pass them. The pack does not even have performance stats based on the vehicle they drive, as you do, but rather their starting position in the grid. The last cars will be able to be passed fairly quickly, but the lead cars will gain a 200+ meter lead in less than a second, as it seems they start the race already traveling at top speed.
2. The AI cars, no matter how spread out they were when you fought through the pack, will ALL be clumped around the car just following you. So if you passed the slow pokes early, and fought to the lead, and have just now passed the leader (who was cheatingly far ahead of the rest), and then make one mistake enough that the former leader passes you, the rest of the pack will all be in a clump right behind him, and pass you.
3. The AI cars do not follow the physics you do. This is a major problem which makes the it enourmously frustrating to fight through the pack, because any bump with the AI car will result in the AI car veering into you and running you off the road, even if you are twice their size. The AI has unnatural grip, and you have almost none. A single bump from them sends you careening all over the place, while even trying to pull a PITT maneuver on them results in nothing more than you being run off the road while they continue unhindered. Aggressive driving will only ever slow you down.
4. The AI teleports after errors. I've been run off the road by the AI, but as I was in an offroad truck, I decided to fight through and run back to the road. well, the AI didn't like being off road with me, so they teleported back to the road at full speed to join the rest of the pack. Any attempt for you to use the "reset" button to teleport back onto the road after an error has you immobile for a few seconds, then have to accelerate painfully slow to rejoin the race. The AI teleports and does not just return to the track, but returns to the middle of the pack at full speed already.
There are more ways that the AI cheats, that are more just variations on those main 4 ways, but those are the most concise. The cheating makes the races frustratingly difficult, with much foul language upon the multitude of restarts required.
The fun of the game, and why I do not get rid of it, is the wide open world. I'm a player who likes a game that is more "toy" than "game", and the ability to drive like a hooligan through a multitude of beautiful and wonderfully rendered landscapes, with seemingly no limit to where I can roam, is wonderful. It's actually quite fun and relaxing to me to be able to play the game in the free roam, and meet personal challenges of "Reach the top of that mountain" or "find a way up this cliff" make the game very enjoyable.
I just wish it was not required to race against that godawful AI in order to unlock the wide world or the more entertaining vehicles.… Expand
So you can keep your super serious racers with their parts, bins, gear ratios and manicured race tracks; I'll be playing Fuel with its tornadoes, hovercraft and XXL off-roading. [June 2009, p.92]
There's no denying Asobo's achievement in building such a daring, beautiful landscape on such a vast scale, but the core of any good racing game is falling in love with its vehicles, the things you can do with them, and the places you can take them, and by that measure FUEL is distinctly average.
Fuel is without a doubt a complete game, that thanks to the numerous unlockable areas, cars, challenges and so on, reaches an enviable longevity. Unfortunately the gameplay lacks all the functionality typical of the competition, and there are some techincal issues that ruin the overall score. Fuel is a game for all arcade-off-road racing games, but beware as you won't find the dynamism of Motorstorm nor the attention to detail of Pure, but a different game, with good free-roaming gameplay.