Gas Guzzlers PC Preview

Author: Sean Ridgeley
Editor: Howard Ha
Publish Date: Thursday, March 22nd, 2012
Originally Published on Neoseeker (http://www.neoseeker.com)
Article Link: http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Games/Previews/gas_guzzlers_cc/
Copyright Neo Era Media, Inc. - please do not redistribute or use for commercial purposes.

Gamepires is currently finishing up work on their debut title, a PC only racer by the name of Gas Guzzlers: Combat Carnage. It's a terrible name, but if you're not a superficial arse, you'll look beneath the hood and see it's a pretty fine piece of work.

Content & gameplay

The preview build I was given featured two outdoor tracks (one in a canyon, the other in a desert), and two cars (Bummer 3M JTR and FAT Ficho). Gameplay consists of blasting other cars with machine guns and shotguns and use various powerups as you try to hit the finish line first. Let me tell you, there's something special about a group of Fichos chasing each other around the desert shooting off shotgun rounds at each other, particularly when one takes another out of the race entirely.

Graphics & performance

Lighting effects here are particularly impressive, and quite a few graphics options let you crank up various others. Performance however, is pretty rough on a 6950 GPU / 1055t CPU at 1680x1050 resolution, even with settings lowered significantly, consistently ranging from 20-45fps, and feeling very stuttery much of the time.

The soundtrack

Music is a mix of more or less generic guitar and drums, and then one odd track that would feel far more at home in an RPG than a car combat game. There's an annoying announcer as well, but thankfully he can be muted.

Controls

Handling is rough with keyboard controls, at least with the default cars and lack of upgrades. While manageable, fairly often I found myself fighting to hold a proper turn, swerving back and forth with little control. The lack of sensitivity options, in-game mouse support, and 90s-era style controls don't help either (does anyone prefer arrow keys ever?). With mouse software I remapped some things to force mouse clicks on forward and reverse firing, which helped some, but not everyone will have or can be bothered with this option. Pads and wheels are supported, however, so if you're keen on those, you should be good to go.

Final thoughts

Gas Guzzlers will be launching digitally this spring and will sport both single player and multiplayer modes, plus progression. As of now, there's not a lot to say about it: it appears a solid arcade-style racer with visuals that are easy on the eyes -- it just suffers in controls and performance, at least for the time being. A demo is available now.

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