Formula Fusion (PC) Review

By Az Elias 07.07.2017 5

Review for Formula Fusion on PC

There seems to be somewhat of an anti-grav racing renaissance happening right now. With F-Zero and (up until recently) Wipeout rusting away in the garage, the door has been left open for others to bring back a genre that was all the rage in the late 90s. The likes of FAST RMX and Redout have returned the high-speed thrill, succeeding in some areas and falling a little short in others, whilst BallisticNG is shaping up really well in its long time in Early Access. To really nail what has long been missing for a number of years, though, surely, there could be none better than a development team made up of former Wipeout staff?

It is perhaps with unfortunate timing that Formula Fusion arrives right around the same time as Wipeout: Omega Collection. That former Wipeout devs would get together to create a spiritual successor to the series, only for remasters of some of the best it has to offer to hit shelves for PlayStation 4 can't have gone down too well with those at R8 Games. That said, Omega Collection not being on PC might still just work in Formula Fusion's favour.

Since the Wipeout influence is no secret, the bar is pretty high for R8 Games. The elongated designs of Formula Fusion's ships bear striking resemblance to those of its "cousin," and the tracks themselves definitely have that same urban visual style that The Designers Republic implemented into the Wipeout titles the company previously worked on. Few complaints can be had for the graphical side of the game, although more skins instead of colours would be appreciated for the ships.

In an ironic sense, though, Formula Fusion looks to have released out of Early Access far too soon. Not only would delaying things have been better in the longer term due to Omega Collection taking away from this game's current limelight, but it would have given the chance to iron out the numerous bugs and add more content that currently makes Formula Fusion look pretty bare.

Screenshot for Formula Fusion on PC

A lack of game modes and just eight tracks in total makes for an extremely limited game. Trying to make out there is more on offer by proclaiming night and reverse variants of the maps isn't going to fool anyone, even though it is naturally a positive to provide these as unlockables. A single-player campaign with varying difficulties incorporates different modes, such as simply finishing in 1st place, an elimination where the ship in last place at the end of each lap is ejected, and being tasked with setting the fastest lap. The elimination can last a lengthy time with 10 racers, meaning just as many laps need to be raced. These modes are welcome, though, and the ability to play single races without items is an appreciated one to ensure it is players' driving skills that are tested. It is just unfortunate there isn't much more when looking beyond the campaign and individual races.

Customisation plays a pivotal role in determining the strengths and weaknesses of ships. Credits can be spent to purchase new cards that can be applied to ships that boost certain stats or place certain items that become available during races into their builds. The result is a small selection of machines in favour of players creating unique loadouts to fit their vehicles with. It has mixed results in the end, as only certain weapons will pop up when items are picked up in races, and the high defence of machines can mean a weaker loadout immediately puts players at a disadvantage when the weapons they have can't defeat them. Generally, a larger range of ships with individual stats and making use of all weapon types during races is a preferred setup, but it does set Formula Fusion apart from other games of its ilk.

Screenshot for Formula Fusion on PC

Cubed3 Rating

5/10
Rated 5 out of 10

Average

Outside of the campaign and options for a single race, there just isn't much here. The eight tracks get old quick, and the online portion is dead - each time this was attempted, there were never any lobbies running. Free updates that include new tracks may extend the life value, and R8 Games has shown commitment to supporting the game since the weeks following its release, but there needs to be more to entice people to stick with it. As it stands, Formula Fusion is an anti-grav racer that looks and somewhat feels like Wipeout, but doesn't have the content and appeal of it.

Developer

R8 Games

Publisher

R8 Games

Genre

Driving

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

I did try this out, but it really felt like a poor man's Wipeout...and not particularly speedy, either.

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

UNITE714: Weekly Prayers | Bible Verses

Adam Riley said:
I did try this out, but it really felt like a poor man's Wipeout...and not particularly speedy, either.

That's something I neglected to mention. It definitely didn't have the speed I look for in an AG racer. F-Zero always has Wipeout beat in that regard, but I played Omega Collection, and Fusion feels much slower, especially when you hit a wall - you come to a near halt.

Yeah, it put me off immediately, and there was no tension during the races - everything felt so empty and bland. I'm shocked to read that this is by former Wipeout developers! Smilie

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

UNITE714: Weekly Prayers | Bible Verses
Guest (guest) 07.07.2017#4

R8 is not really made up of exclusively ex-wipeout devs though. There's like two or three people in R8 that worked in Studio Liverpool during the development of Wipeout 3, all the rest are completely unrelated to SL or Wipeout.

Correct, not exclusively former Wipeout devs. Perhaps a few more, or indeed one or two from the earlier Wipeout games, could have helped propel Fusion closer to the standards of Wipeout in the end.
 

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