That was my first impression.
Right from when I installed it and started it, it took me 30 minutes to get started. 15 minutes of shader generation and 15 minutes of clicking through every small little popup window with “helpful” hints. I got tired after the 2 first “hints”, so I rushed through them all. That was before I got started with actual gameplay.
When the game finally started and I was able to drive a vehicle, guess what! MORE FUCKING POPUPS AFTER MOVING THE VEHICLE 2 METERS:”Inline hints like in World of Goo is something I’d like”:!
When I got started it seemed like I needed some Games for Windows account to save my progress, and that I couldn’t save the progress without it. I don’t have an account and I don’t intend getting one either.
After about 20 minutes of uninterupted (wow!) playing, I had enough of metre wide pixels and crappy physics.
You see, it doesn’t look good at all with a game running in a default 640×480 resolution on a 26″ monitor – and without the ability to change resolution within the game, it starts to get real bad! And believe me, the graphics and physics in the original Monster Truck Madness from 1996 is miles ahead of FUEL!
And to be fair, I tried to do a second impression after changing the resolution to 1920×1200 pixels. The graphics was far better, but the physics were still crappy.
And to be fair the second time, the idea and concept was and is good. but the wrapping sucks big time! Codemasters might have forgotten that playing games is all about having fun and playing the game, not being able to select paintwork and colors and what the driver should look like. And you must be able to save the game without relying on internet access and Microsoft! And not to forget the ultra-annoying popups!
Sadly, there won’t be a third impression. I kind of liked FUEL after I got started, but without being able to save the game, the final nail in the coffin was nailed.
So, this was an utterly big fail! Its a shame though, the music was good!