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jblank
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« on: June 02, 2009, 09:00:09 PM »

http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/987/987232p1.html


YIKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! eek

Might be taking my copy back to Best Buy.
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2009, 09:19:06 PM »

Ouch... 5.1 out of 10.  tear
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« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2009, 09:23:07 PM »

I had such high hopes....I was at BB at 10:00 on the dot to get this, I was anxious to play this after the kids go to bed, and BOOM, it gets absolutely slammed. I'll probably just take it back and get my 60 bucks back. What a shame. frown
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« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2009, 09:23:47 PM »

Damn, son.  I'm hoping that there's fun to be had here even if the reviews are poor.  Stuntman Ignition didn't do great, pulling in a 75% on gamerankings (which is still way better than 5.1), but that was one of my favorite games that year.

Hmm...one of his criticisms is that you don't need to drive anywhere since you can simply select events from a list.  Wasn't one of the main complaints about Burnout Paradise that they didn't let you choose from a list and forced you to drive to the event? This doesn't seem like a negative to me.
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« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2009, 09:26:51 PM »

Quote from: Chaz on June 02, 2009, 09:23:47 PM

Damn, son.  I'm hoping that there's fun to be had here even if the reviews are poor.  Stuntman Ignition didn't do great, pulling in a 75% on gamerankings (which is still way better than 5.1), but that was one of my favorite games that year.

And maybe there is some, but 60 bucks nowadays is a heck of a gamble. Ther ejust didn't seem to be much (or any) redeeming part of the game from the review. Sucks when games you've been looking forward to turn out bad.
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jztemple2
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« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2009, 09:53:31 PM »

Bummer. Glad I have Red Faction: Guerrilla to take my mind off of it.
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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2009, 12:02:29 AM »

Quote from: Chaz on June 02, 2009, 09:23:47 PM

Hmm...one of his criticisms is that you don't need to drive anywhere since you can simply select events from a list.  Wasn't one of the main complaints about Burnout Paradise that they didn't let you choose from a list and forced you to drive to the event? This doesn't seem like a negative to me.

I mentioned that same thing in the PC thread where we were discussing the reviews.  Seems like an odd thing to criticize.

With an average around 75% I am still interested in this one, but I'm going to delay buying it for a few weeks since Red Faction just came out and Prototype is out next week.  I think there is still some good fun to be had here if you're a fan of open world or offroad racing games.
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« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2009, 12:07:47 AM »

I'm holding off, but mainly because I'm looking for excuses to force myself not to buy games since I have quite a few on my plate already.  The whole IGN review was very poorly written, I thought, so I'm not putting very much stock in it at all.
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« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2009, 02:39:47 AM »

Quote from: jblank on June 02, 2009, 09:23:07 PM

I had such high hopes....I was at BB at 10:00 on the dot to get this, I was anxious to play this after the kids go to bed, and BOOM, it gets absolutely slammed. I'll probably just take it back and get my 60 bucks back. What a shame. frown
Had it preordered, but I am now officially OUT.  Usually buy everything that Codemasters puts their name on, but this review has me holding off at least until I see some real impressions of the game.  The price will probably drop pretty fast if it's that bad so maybe I will pick it up in the under thirty dollar range.
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« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2009, 03:34:07 AM »

Quote from: EngineNo9 on June 03, 2009, 12:02:29 AM

Quote from: Chaz on June 02, 2009, 09:23:47 PM

Hmm...one of his criticisms is that you don't need to drive anywhere since you can simply select events from a list.  Wasn't one of the main complaints about Burnout Paradise that they didn't let you choose from a list and forced you to drive to the event? This doesn't seem like a negative to me.

I mentioned that same thing in the PC thread where we were discussing the reviews.  Seems like an odd thing to criticize.

With an average around 75% I am still interested in this one, but I'm going to delay buying it for a few weeks since Red Faction just came out and Prototype is out next week.  I think there is still some good fun to be had here if you're a fan of open world or offroad racing games.

I'm seeing 64/65% average on Gamerankings, and one of those is Eurogamer's 5/10.  They've been scoring lower lately, but not that low.
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« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2009, 06:22:52 AM »

Come on, somebody has to take the plunge.  smile  You know you want to!
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« Reply #11 on: June 03, 2009, 09:32:54 AM »

Quote from: EngineNo9 on June 03, 2009, 06:22:52 AM

Come on, somebody has to take the plunge.  smile  You know you want to!
My pre-order is arriving today, so I'll jump into those murky waters. Just remember, all of you owe me!  icon_wink
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« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2009, 03:42:15 PM »

Quote from: jztemple2 on June 03, 2009, 09:32:54 AM

Quote from: EngineNo9 on June 03, 2009, 06:22:52 AM

Come on, somebody has to take the plunge.  smile  You know you want to!
My pre-order is arriving today, so I'll jump into those murky waters. Just remember, all of you owe me!  icon_wink

Sweet!  I'm looking forward to some more realistic impressions.
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« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2009, 05:28:44 PM »

I just remembered that Prototype comes out next week, so I'm definitely putting Fuel off until later.  I'm interested in impressions though, because I'll likely be getting it at a later date.
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« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2009, 06:34:58 PM »

Just got it and spent about fifteen minutes getting use to the controls and driving around the camp where I was dropped and then did one race, err actually a challenge, where I run a course to beat a set time to win some "fuel", the currency of the game. My vehicle is a rwd dune buggy and the route was just under three minutes of a lot of turns, some asphalt, some dirt, almost all uphill. Decent feel of racing, definitely *not* arcade-ish. Only an auto tranny, but I guess that would be expected. I was able to use throttle-steering around the tight corners and even found one small short cut.

Nothing turns me off so far...
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« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2009, 07:12:17 PM »

Did you win the challenge?  I'm curious how this comment from the review sits with you:

Quote from: IGN
There's no rubber-banding per se, but the way that the game makes things "challenging" is by having the guys at the front of the pack take off at a million miles an hour and then stay ahead for the bulk of the race. Near the end, it'll just slow down a great deal to let you pass on by and win the race. Once you realize that this happens every time, it's not a matter of taking risks to catch up but simply playing it safe and waiting for the computer to let off the accelerator and let you take your place on the podium.

Especially after you have more races under your belt.
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jztemple2
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« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2009, 07:34:24 PM »

Well, I've run into a problem... I got Red Faction Guerrilla yesterday, so figured that after I got fed up with Fuel I'd switch back to that. Only one problem...

I like Fuel  icon_biggrin

After my dune buggy race described above, I selected a motorcycle race. Now as someone pointed out, you can just use a list menu to go to a race instead of having to drive there, and they thought that was a bad thing. It's not, in this game it makes lots of sense. So I started, at the easiest difficulty, the motorcycle race as last of eight. I got up to the lead pretty quickly and won, and it was a fun course. Lots of natural jumps, some amazing "over the top of a hill getting big air" leaps, and some tricky bits requiring some real playing with the throttle. Lots of fun.

Then I tried another challenge. This one is to follow a chopper, the flying kind icon_wink, as it goes straight across country. Since you aren't following any paved or unpaved roads (those are the two types in the game) I had to make some fast decisions on whether to jump a hill and risk crashing or go over easy, whether to stick to a paved road for speed and get off at an angle to the preferred path, and generally just keep from going splat on stuff. Again, lots of fun.

After that challenge I drove around on my cycle for awhile. It handles just as you would expect it would. On grass the rear wheel slides out on power, same on dirt. It's tricky going across slopes and you have to play with the throttle. I've only ridden a motorcycle about thirty years ago, but this felt pretty much like I would expect it to.

Next I picked out another race. This required a quad ATV which I had to buy with my fuel points. Started last of eight on medium difficulty. I didn't drive quite as cleanly as I could, but I was able to work my way up the field and won by passing the last opponent just before the last checkpoint. Again, a really fun, wild course with big boulders, some large sign boards to point the way, which you also could use as jumps  icon_wink, and lots of interesting scenery.

Ok, yes, the opponents do rubber band. This is not a bad thing in an arcade game!!! You can't win if you are just a klutz or don't make an effort, but it doesn't punish you if you drive clean and aggressively. I'm fine with this approach. Honestly, when I play Forza 2 I set the options so I can just beat the opposition if I do well.

Finally, after the quad race, I drove around a bit. The countryside is interesting, don't know where some of the reviewers got the idea that the scenery is plain or boring. After a little while I was notified that I had spotted a Vista (no, not that Vista) Spot which gives a great view and wins me some fuel points. So I set my GPS on it and headed towards it. The GPS path wanted to put me on the roads, but I opted to just steeplechase and head right towards the mark. It was a rush! Some very wild, up and down terrain. And it started getting dark. Finally after about ten minutes I checked my map... I had only gone half way. That was so very cool. I drove some more I got close and started finding some very, very steep hillsides. Finally I found that it was so steep going that I almost couldn't make it...

Almost.

I drove cross-slope, I found small gullies to work upwards, I would gun and race when I saw a flat spot and used the momentum to go almost straight up... I finally got to the top of the ridge. It was so satisfying to actually have to work out how to get there, it was like trials riding that motorcycles do in Europe. Very, very fun.

I don't have clue what the hell these reviewers found so bad. OK, maybe there's no backstory and after a while the races might start looking a bit the same. But, so far, I'm very happy with the purchase.
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« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2009, 07:38:49 PM »

Quote from: MonkeyFinger on June 03, 2009, 07:12:17 PM

Did you win the challenge?  I'm curious how this comment from the review sits with you:

Quote from: IGN
There's no rubber-banding per se, but the way that the game makes things "challenging" is by having the guys at the front of the pack take off at a million miles an hour and then stay ahead for the bulk of the race. Near the end, it'll just slow down a great deal to let you pass on by and win the race. Once you realize that this happens every time, it's not a matter of taking risks to catch up but simply playing it safe and waiting for the computer to let off the accelerator and let you take your place on the podium.

Especially after you have more races under your belt.

Yes, I can address this, but perhaps differently than you might expect. Unlike the reviewer, I don't start a race and then stay back playing it safe. I try as hard as I can, without taking what I think are bad risky moves. I been doing this so far and if I do see an opponent slow down it's just as likely it's because of a poor racing line choice. I mean, really, if you purposely race like the reviewer does, why would you bother getting the game to begin with?
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« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2009, 09:07:00 PM »

How about the complaint in some of the reviews that the game auto-resets your vehicle if it lands more than slightly wrong or hits something?  I much prefer some leeway in those situations and have the game let me reset if I need to.
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« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2009, 09:22:59 PM »

Thanks for the impressions. I'm planning to pick up my preorder tomorrow.
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« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2009, 10:06:27 PM »

Quote from: EngineNo9 on June 03, 2009, 09:07:00 PM

How about the complaint in some of the reviews that the game auto-resets your vehicle if it lands more than slightly wrong or hits something?  I much prefer some leeway in those situations and have the game let me reset if I need to.

Not true! The game will not reset you unless you want it to, EXCEPT when you have accumulated so much damage that it does become an automatic reset. There is a meter just below and to the left of the speedo and it displays your current damage. If you got off scale high, it will reset you and clear your damage.

The game in fact will not reset you if you go off course, you can go off on your own if you wish. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn't. But it will only reset on heavy enough damage.

I played another hour or so, unlock some more vehicles, liveries, and three new areas. You unlock areas faster if you choose to run at the levels above rookie in the career races, but you will get there eventually. I did find two challenges, which don't have adjustable difficulties, too hard for me to beat. However, I will be able to get better vehicles in the same class later on, which should make the challenges easier for me to be. Also I'm kinda sucky at reaction time and I think with practice I could probably beat these two anyway.

So, I am still fully of the opinion that just like Red Faction Guerrilla, I give this game two thumbs way up. Now, that with the proviso that you like racing games. I liked Baja: Edge of Control which a lot of reviewers didn't. I don't care that Fuel doesn't have visual damage modeling (it does have damage) or performance add-on parts for enhancements. I think the vehicle handling feels right, the variety of vehicles is excellent, and the terrain... it's just fantastic. If you've ever wanted to really have a good off-road racing game, this one is the best I've ever seen. No artificial barriers, no endless cliff walls to hem you in. Just a lot of fun off-road (and to be precise, a decent amount of on-road) racing,
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« Reply #21 on: June 03, 2009, 10:18:43 PM »

Fuel sounds like a more wide open version of Motorstorm. Not a bad game to emulate in my opinion.
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« Reply #22 on: June 03, 2009, 10:33:24 PM »

jztemple2:  Thanks for the impressions.  You make Fuel sound pretty darn fun.  I have a question:  If you just drive around freestyle like, will you eventually "run into" races and challenges and such - or do you NEED to use the menu list system to join them?
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« Reply #23 on: June 03, 2009, 11:13:09 PM »

Quote from: Lockdown on June 03, 2009, 10:33:24 PM

jztemple2:  Thanks for the impressions.  You make Fuel sound pretty darn fun.  I have a question:  If you just drive around freestyle like, will you eventually "run into" races and challenges and such - or do you NEED to use the menu list system to join them?

You don't need to use the menu list. If a race has already been discovered it's icon will be on the map. From your vehicle, you see a red vertical beacon that marks the location of the race. You can drive towards it, or set a GPS marker on it via the map and let the GPS chevrons show you the best path that will use paved and unpaved roads.

If you drive freestyle I believe you will eventually "run into" undiscovered race icons. I haven't seen this so far because when you get enough stars to unlock a "camp", the races associated with it are unlocked and that's how I've gotten the races I've run on. I'll keep an eye open for this. I do know by driving around you uncover vista points and liveries because I've done that.
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« Reply #24 on: June 04, 2009, 12:35:16 AM »

Thanks for the great impressions and answering some questions, jz.  Now that you mention it (and I look at your signature) I remember you were the other person on the forums that enjoyed Baja: Edge of Control as much as I did, so hearing you compare it to that makes me think that I am destined to get this once I'm done with my other new games.  Keep us up to date if your impressions change as you keep playing.
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« Reply #25 on: June 04, 2009, 01:36:57 AM »

Just played about ninety minutes. Seems that the only thing you can't discover while driving around is career races; they must only unlock when you unlock the associated camp. Just ran a checkpoint race in SUVs (pretty bizarre SUVs) and it was different than races before because so much of it was in tighter confines. I should elaborate on my previous mention of paved and unpaved roads. Unpaved roads can be quite wide and clean, or overgrown, or not more than narrow paths. In this last race there were a lot of those narrow paths, so balls to the wall driving wasn't always appropriate.

Also just chased down my first Maverick vehicle. These purple arrows show up on your map after you unlock them via certain career races. They are vehicles driving around which if you hunt down and tap are added to your garage. Pretty cool.

I still like the game. I like it better as an off-roader than DiRT, and that's saying something.
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« Reply #26 on: June 04, 2009, 02:25:30 AM »

I posted some observations and a link to this thread over on the Xbox.com Fuel forum. A guy posted after me saying what he didn't like about the game and I thought I'd address his comments.

He felt the menu navigation was clunky. Seems an odd comment. The start button brings up the top menu. Pressing left or right changes the category (and there are icons across the top that reflect this) and pressing up and down highlights different options in each catagory.

There was also a complaint that you can't go from free drive into a race without going to the menus. That's not true, I've driven in free drive up to a map race icon, it tells me to press "A" if I want to race. Now you do have to go into a selection process once you press "A" to select the car and other options, but that's simple. You can't race with any car you want, races are restricted in class.

Finally there was a mention of the lack of damage modeling and how just having a damage meter is insufficient to keep the player aware of how damaged you are. After playing for four hours I haven't found this to be a problem. You get damage when you hit something, so you get in the habit of glancing at the damage meter after any bang-ups. The lack of visual damage modeling seems to me a design decision, not a failure of the game. Visual damage modeling is something that's become one of those things people seem to expect, but it's not needed in this game.

Sadly I think a lot of the negative comments about the game are due to expectations on the part of the reviewers. They are slamming the game because it's not how they would have designed it.
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« Reply #27 on: June 04, 2009, 01:04:08 PM »

Quote from: jztemple2 on June 04, 2009, 02:25:30 AM

Sadly I think a lot of the negative comments about the game are due to expectations on the part of the reviewers. They are slamming the game because it's not how they would have designed it.

This is one of my biggest pet peeves about reviews: reviewing a game based on what the reviewer wanted it to be rather than what it is.
I'm curious as to what you like about it more than Dirt. I'm guessing the big advantage would be the open-world nature, or were you referencing the driving characteristics too?
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« Reply #28 on: June 04, 2009, 01:25:48 PM »

Quote from: Misguided on June 04, 2009, 01:04:08 PM

This is one of my biggest pet peeves about reviews: reviewing a game based on what the reviewer wanted it to be rather than what it is.

This bugs me for movie reviews, too.  Gene Siskel used to do it all the time.

GamesRadar just gave Fuel a 7/10, though their tag line is, "Bigger isn't necessarily better."

Quote
You'll love
An absolutely huge game world
Decent variety of races and tracks
Can race into the path of a tornado
You'll hate
Overly large world loses focus
No control over the tricks your rider pulls off
Races and vehicles are a mixed bag

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« Reply #29 on: June 04, 2009, 01:59:56 PM »

I've heard enough to be cautiously in - I was really looking forward to this one, and it still sounds as if it could be worth the time.  I'll have impressions this weekend.
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« Reply #30 on: June 04, 2009, 03:11:19 PM »

I had some thoughts overnight and wanted to add them, plus address a few comments from other folks.

When I thought about the comment the guy made over at the Xbox.com forum about the lack of visual damage modeling being a bad thing, I realized there was another reason why visual damage modeling wouldn't be effective and that is because one of the three views you can have is a "bumper view" where no part of your own vehicle is visible.  If you can't see any part of your car, what would be the point of altering the 3D model to show damage? I stand by my previous assessment that not having visual damage modeling is a design decision, not a fault of the game. It's just eye candy. When I play Forza 2 I use the cockpit gauge view and you can't even see the car itself. It's one of the reasons I didn't bother painting my cars and adding decals after a while, it seemed rather pointless.

Regarding the GamesRadar review:
Quote
You'll hate
Overly large world loses focus
No control over the tricks your rider pulls off
Races and vehicles are a mixed bag

Seriously, "Overly large world loses focus"? Isn't that like your fiance complaining because the diamond on her engagement ring is too big? The world isn't overly large. You can travel by helo to within a few miles of any point, so it's not like you can't get somewhere without having to spend a lot of time driving. There is lots of variation of terrain in the different locations. There should have been more name places on the map so you can orient yourself easier, and also it would have been nice if you could add your own labels and landmarks, but those are small points.

"No control over the tricks your rider pulls off". Really? "You'll hate" the game because you can't do tricks? I guess that the reaction of the snow boarder generation, it's all styling, not performance. To list that as a negative is silly. I think it was a waste to have the character do tricks, it's just a distraction and a waste of CPU/GPU power.

"Races and vehicles are a mixed bag". Yeah, because we know everyone hates games that give you lots of options on what vehicles you can race. Sure, some aren't as powerful as others, and some suck off-road. It's part of the game.

I'm really trying to be objective in my comments, but it pisses me off that because of this kind of negative press Codemasters probably will kill the next project by this developer. Any racing game that doesn't have all the eye candy or is too large a world or offers too many choices of vehicles will be considered a non-starter. And those of us who like more straightforward racing games will lose out.

My comment about the game being better than DiRT? DiRT does have a lot of interesting racing. The problem is that DiRT's race unlocking and assignment structure becomes somewhat discouraging after a while. The only progress I feel like I'm achieving is to unlock another race that feels a lot like the race on the previous level of the pyramid, just with somewhat different cars. Also, like so many other off-road racing games, you are tightly constricted to the path you can run. Now, that's fine in how it represents the real world events. But after a while they don't seem all that different from one another.

I guess my opinion of Forza 2 is somewhat the same. Sure it's great that there are over 300+ cars. But I soon get tired of just getting cars for the sake of just getting cars. The career structure does give me some motivation to try different cars, but only up to a point, and then I find myself having to race for the umpteenth time at Silverstone to get a win to unlock another series. But what if I don't want to go back over and over to Silverstone? Forza 2 isn't a bad game, it's a pretty good game. I wish they had done some things different, but overall it's fine.

And that's how I feel about Fuel, it's not a bad game, it's a pretty good game. I wish they had done a few things different, but overall it's great racing in a variety of vehicles over a LOT of very different terrain. What can be bad about that?

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« Reply #31 on: June 04, 2009, 04:15:27 PM »

Sounds good to me. I'm looking forward to trying it. Agree on the tricks remark. Like I give a damn. I don't want a trick-based game anyway.

What's the longest race you've encountered so far? My understanding is that there are some that are really long, as in unheard of for a console racer long. (though as I type that, I realize it may be that the GT series has endurance events).

BTW, gamersyde.com has gameplay vids up.
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« Reply #32 on: June 04, 2009, 04:56:20 PM »

Longest race? I recall one that lasted about twelve minutes. Of course since I'm playing single player I can always pause. Most challenges and races seem to be no more than five minutes, but that feels like a long time when you are having to make racing line decisions (turning, braking, gas) every few seconds. I suspect the deeper I get into the game, the more I'm going to find longer and more challenging races. The Challenges, which aren't always a race against competitors, tend to be shorter but are usually tougher, especially since there is no difficulty adjustment. And sometimes they are pretty tough, like one where you have about sixteen checkpoints but only a few seconds at start on your countdown clock. As you reach each checkpoint you get more second added to the clock, but just barely enough. It's extremely intense, but not really frustrating. And this is just one of about eight or so types of challenges and most aren't as tough as this.

Regarding the map. The ten Zones unlock by getting more stars. Only Career Races count towards adding "stars" to your total. Having enough "stars" unlocks the different Zones in sequence. So that means you never have to even play a challenge if you don't want, and if you do you don't have to win every one in a zone to unlock those in another zone.

To clarify, There are I think ten Zones. One is unlocked at first. As you win races, you gain either one, two or three stars, depending on the difficulty you chose. The next Zone unlocks after you get IIRC six stars, the next about ten stars, etc. The stars aren't "spend", it's just a running total to reflect your progress through the game. You could just do rookie difficulty the whole time if you wish and still eventually unlock all Zones.

The final Zone unlocks when when you reach 160 stars. I believe this would indicate that there are at least 160 (plus what's in the last Zone) unique Career Races in the game. That's a lot of content.

Speaking of longer races, there is an editor and you can build up to ten races. You can play them by yourself for practice and also going online to multiplayer race them. Your are limited to I think 32 checkpoints, but I'm not aware of any distance limitation. I'll try this out this afternoon and post the result.
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« Reply #33 on: June 04, 2009, 06:31:58 PM »

OK, I just started playing and did a Challenge called an Endurance. This is I believe the longest *type* of Challenge. This one, which is in one of the early Zones you unlock, was eleven miles which I finished in nine minutes ten seconds. Interestingly it had no checkpoint counter (x/y, where x is the number of check points you've reached and y is the total number) so I didn't know anything more than I was headed to a "C" (a checkpoint) rather than an "F" (the final checkpoint). It was pouring rain and I was in this beast of car/truck called a "King Arthur" with a balanced design between on road and off road. It turns out the one intermediate checkpoint was a bit less than half way of the total length.

I also used the editor to build a quick race. I used only two points, start and finish, and found I could put them in different zones. The one leg of my quickie race was 24 miles long, so I'm figuring that it's pretty much unlimited what you can build. The points must be on a road or track, and not on or close to an intersection. I haven't been online yet but I'm sure guys are building races of hundreds if not thousands of miles  icon_eek

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« Reply #34 on: June 04, 2009, 06:36:31 PM »

As far as the long race thing, I believe I read that for multiplayer you can create your own checkpoints but it is limited to something like 90 miles in length, which is nearly the diagonal of the whole map.  

In Baja: EoC there were Baja races that were three stages and each stage could take me over 20 minutes of balls out driving even when I was far in the lead.  Those were epic.  I'm hoping to see some of that in the later stages here as well.
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« Reply #35 on: June 04, 2009, 07:33:50 PM »

I really wish games would just stop with the rubberbanding.  Many racing games that I would otherwise love have been ruined by it.  If I am doing well, the other cars shouldn't magically be on my ass at every turn.  Likewise, if I screw up I shouldn't be given a boost or the ai slow down to let me catch up.  I'd much prefer variable difficulty settings that allow you to race against ai of comparable skill instead.

The rubberband system gives a false sense of skill to people who otherwise might not experience it when better ai could give that in a much more realistic sense.
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« Reply #36 on: June 04, 2009, 07:50:59 PM »

Quote from: Harkonis on June 04, 2009, 07:33:50 PM

I really wish games would just stop with the rubberbanding.  Many racing games that I would otherwise love have been ruined by it.  If I am doing well, the other cars shouldn't magically be on my ass at every turn.  Likewise, if I screw up I shouldn't be given a boost or the ai slow down to let me catch up.  I'd much prefer variable difficulty settings that allow you to race against ai of comparable skill instead.

The rubberband system gives a false sense of skill to people who otherwise might not experience it when better ai could give that in a much more realistic sense.

I'm  going to have to revise my assessment that Fuel has rubberbanding. I think that at least at "Expert" (which is the middle of the three difficulties) I see the AI running into stuff (or each other) which is allowing me to catch up. I don't really see them just going slow. Also, once I get ahead of the AI pack, as long as I don't do anything stupid I seem to be able to hold my lead distance.

Now since I'm not good enough I hadn't been able to outrun the AI to see if they magically speed up. If I do fall behind I tend to stay behind. Not enough data to say it definitively, but I don't feel the AI is screwing with me.

I also did a couple of XBL matches. Oddly, once a race is over you are dropped back into freeride mode. But getting to an online race is quick, and when I used one of my created tracks and made a custom match I had an opponent within seconds.

I haven't tried using the "friends only" setting. If someone is playing Fuel and shoots me a friends request, if you aren't one of mine already, I'll add you to my friends list and we can see how hard it is to create a race and get to it.
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« Reply #37 on: June 05, 2009, 11:30:42 AM »

I believe there is supposed to be a "long endurance" type of event that is much longer (40 min+ I think is what I read).
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« Reply #38 on: June 05, 2009, 12:51:29 PM »

Damn you, Mr Cow, now I'm going to have to add this to My List.  icon_razz
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« Reply #39 on: June 05, 2009, 04:08:50 PM »

Sadly it looks like I won't get in much playing of Fuel today; darn.

Regarding long distance events... the longer distance events are "Raids" and "Endurance", the latter is the longer of the two. I've only played in three of the first ten Zones (I believe there are ten) and the longest Endurance event was 12 miles. However, based on theory that the later Zones will contain greater challenges, I wouldn't be surprised at a forty minute race.

I do have to address the post I made earlier regarding stars and unlocking zones. It appears that the developers broke down the zones into three groups of three and one final one. The first three unlock quickly and the next three after not too much longer. The final set of three require 120 stars to be accumulated, and the last zone needs 170 stars. You can only accumulate stars in Career Races, and you get one, two or three stars depending on the difficulty you select. If, for instance, you win at medium difficulty, you get two stars. You can always go back and race the track again, but you do not gain any more stars for it unless you race at the highest difficulty, and even then you only get the one star you didn't get by winning at medium difficulty. This may sound complicated but it's really straightforward when you see it in the game.

So, based on the last group needing 120 stars and the final uber zone needing 170, I'm guessing that there has to be at least 57 Career Races, so you can unlock that last zone (3x57=171). There's probably more than that, maybe 60 or 70. If it was a total of at least sixty, then even if you never ran a career race at the highest difficulty you could still unlock all zones but one by winning all the career races at medium. So I think I was wrong to claim that you could unlock all the zones without ever having to race at any difficulty higher than Rookie. It would seem that you probably do need to win at a higher level to unlock all zones. Or get a bonus code!

Regarding people putting the game on their lists... I do want to emphasize that I like Fuel for reasons that some folks may not care about. I like the openness. I played for almost four hours yesterday and I think I spent at least half of that just driving around on the map, unlocking liveries and vista points and chasing down bonus trucks. Did I mention bonus trucks? Each zone has six trucks you can hunt down to get either a special vehicle or to make visible all the challenges, liveries or vista points in the zone. It's a nice feature to give you a reason to run all over the map.

I also like the off road racing. Some courses are partially on paved roads, but some are on trails or paths or sometimes you just blast across country. Some course have wild weather, or darkness, or obstacles littering your path. Some use big wooden fence sections to provide makeshift ramps or to funnel your racing line for more excitement. That's one thing some reviews haven't give the developers credit for, making the world full of things to see, hit, run over, whatever.

For things I like, there are also things I don't care about. I don't care that there's no visual damage modeling, or player controllable tricks on the cycles and quads, or cockpit views, or aftermarket performance mods for the vehicles, or tuning options. If the lack of these things bother you, you may want to rent the game first. For me, the lack of those items doesn't detract at all from the experience.

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