Gas Guzzlers: Combat Carnage gets ready to give players a safe place to let out their road rage

Gas Guzzlers: Combat Carnage is all about fast cars, big guns and lots of explosions. It’s not an especially complex concept and it won’t be much use as a practice tool for your driver’s test, but for simple, high-speed fun it looks like it’ll be a good time.

Gas Guzzlers is not a sophisticated racing simulator. It’s high speed crash-and-bang on wild racetracks in exotic locales, where winning can mean either beating your opponents to the finish line or just beating them into the ground. Like most racing games, players begin with a low-class, lightly armed vehicle and must compete in various races and challenges to earn cash, buy better machines and hardware and move up the ranks.

Events will be broken down into four separate categories including conventional “first to the finish” races, knockout races and boss tournaments, with new categories, cars and racetracks unlocked as the player progresses. Each computer-controlled opponent will drive based on a unique set of parameters granting them individual “personalities” on the track and, much like the player, they’ll get better and more challenging as the game progresses.

 Combat Carnage

 Combat Carnage

Gas Guzzlers doesn’t boast cutting-edge visuals but it’s pretty enough, with lots of reflective surfaces, exploding fireballs and billowing dust to obscure vision. The soundtrack, on the other hand, is the usual bland, generic metal, tiresome but at least inoffensive enough that it’s easy to ignore. What’s not so easy to ignore are the road-raging outbursts of your stand-in wheelman, a deep-voiced lunatic who bellows obscenities every time somebody’s paint gets chipped. (In other words, a lot.) It’s occasionally amusing, but for the most part it’s just distracting; fortunately, it can be turned off, so kids [and people who just don’t like that sort of thing] can rip it up Road Warrior-style without fear of being f-bombed right out of the game.

A public beta version of the game is out now, with two tracks and two models of cars with different weapon load-outs to take for a spin. It’s pretty rough around the edges at this point but work is continuing, and even as it is, it’s a lot of silly fun. Gas Guzzlers: Combat Carnage is due out later this year.