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Game Info:

Formula Fusion
Developer: R8 Games Ltd
Published by: R8 Games Ltd
Release Date: June 1, 2017
Available on: Windows
Genre: Racing
Players: 1-10
ESRB Rating: unrated
Price: $19.99
(Humble Store Link)

Thanks R8 Games Ltd for the review code.

Formula Fusion is a cool game, but not as cool as I hoped it would be. It helped that I was a bit behind on my reviews I owe; at the time of writing this several patches have hit that got rid of the abundance of performance problems. That being said, this isn't the game to replace Wipeout or F-Zero like some people hoped. This is Formula Fusion.

Formula Fusion is a high speed racing game putting you behind the wheel of extremely fast hover vehicles. You compete against AI or other players in traditional races or time trials. Doing well in a race will earn you tech credits which you can use to buy upgrades for your vehicle and its weapons. The racing types include a standard race, endurance, time trial, speed lap, clean race and elimination. The modes are as follows. Standard races are a traditional 3 laps around the track. In endurance your health slowly goes down after the first lap; you will need to pick up shield power ups to keep going for as long as possible. Time Trial is trying to score the fastest time on your own. Speed lap is similar to time trial except you have to finish the course faster than other racers to win. Clean race is a standard race without weapons. Elimination is a long race that will not end until all other cars have exploded. After every lap, the player in last place is eliminated from the race permanently.

Highlights:

Strong Points: The game's challenge is top notch, it will make you want to keep racing.
Weak Points: The game has no real character or life to it. The racetracks, music and visuals are all boring. The changes in difficulty are rather confusing, I am unaware if Im experiencing a bug or the game's meant to speed up like that.
Moral Warnings: The only thing you'll have in this is cartoony explosions, and the cars do have weapons.

I usually write positives first before negatives, but I am changing it today. This game is still decent at the end of the day yet I wonder if it would have been better if it didn't try so hard to be other games. The effects in the game are either a hindrance to gameplay or they just ruin the visuals. The blur effects that are left on by default are rather ugly and just ruin the look of the vehicles and the world around you. Add the camera shake and you just have a distraction. Thankfully you have options to shut it all off. There are eight tracks and night variations yet nothing about the tracks add to the challenge, they are just there. The music is very simple techno loops, nothing special. The paint jobs are boring as well, nothing that sticks out on your vehicle. While the game has weapons they are rather boring and negligible; throughout my races, the missiles, mines or blinders never seemed to make a difference in the race. This is a racing game you'll want to play on keyboard. While I can't speak for the console version of the game, using a controller makes the vehicle feel heavier. When I used keyboard I had a much smoother experience with and without steering assist enabled.

The saving graces of this game are in its challenge. The hover vehicle you drive feels like a beast waiting to be tamed. I'll admit for my first few races I had to turn on steering assist to get used to how your vehicle handled. As I practiced I learned how to use the soft breaks to make turns and when to hit boosts and when not to. While the game itself lacks character, it gives me the inspiration to beat my record by a few seconds every time. The speed is exciting, the drive to perfection is exciting. Every win nets you tech credits which you can use to buy upgrades that improve the performance of your vehicle. The variation in game modes also helped keep my interest in challenging my top speeds.

Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 68%
Gameplay - 14/20
Graphics - 7/10
Sound - 7/10
Stability - 3/5
Controls - 3/5

Morality Score - 94%
Violence - 8/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 10/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 9/10

Now I am feeling mixed on the difficulty settings. While I was able to win races on advanced difficulties the AI performance wasn't what changed. I couldn't tell if the cars sped up or the game did. Even with all the fancy effects shut off, on the elite difficulty I was able to lap other cars with only steering assist and an engine upgrade on my loadout. Using the same loadout on lower difficulties lessened the speed of the game and made the races harder. I am unaware at this time if this is a bug or intended. I'll keep the game installed at the very least for a month and see what changes.

Other than the boring weapons and the explosion if you lose all your health, you won't have any moral worries with this game.

While this game is far from perfection, it is something that deserves at least a try. While I feel it has released in an incomplete state from Early Access, the devs still have a chance to improve the game. Additional content is planned and may be good enough to change my review.

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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