I think its common knowledge that we’ve got several racing fans here at GLG. While a lot of the racing we do consists of cars without weapons mounted to their roofs, sometimes you just need to switch things up a bit and launch rockets at the asshat in front of you. That’s where Gas Guzzlers: Extreme comes in. While definitely a racing game a heart, there’s enough of an emphasis of blowing stuff up that you trigger-happy, road-raging gamers out there will find a lot to enjoy.

Gas Guzzlers Extreme Review - Pink Car

Yeah. I drove this.

Starting out as just a regular guy trying to get his name known in the racing circuits, you begin your Gas Guzzlers: Extreme career by jumping into the driver seat of a relatively high-end roadster. The car’s sponsor, Happy Smokes, wants to see what you can do out there so they give you a fast car with some rockets strapped to the roof. After the race, the sponsor politely tells you to shove it and gives you some coin so you can go off and attempt to build your career from the ground up. After buying your first set of wheels, you set off to become #1 in the standings by participating in a number of races. Although not explicitly stated in-game, progression through Gas Guzzlers: Extreme is accomplished by getting to the top of the standings, and then winning the series tournament. This can be confusing for some as car unlocks stop at a certain point until you move on to the next tournament tier. For a while, I was confused as to why I wasn’t unlocking cars anymore until I beat the tournament and moved onto the next championship where I miraculously started unlocking cars again. A minor gripe, but it would have been nice to know. I would have also liked to have progressed a little faster through the leaderboards, as I felt like I was stuck at one tier a little too long, which made things slightly repetitive, especially when the unlocks stopped.

Gas Guzzlers Extreme Review - Shootin

You can also shoot at the people behind you, just in case you have someone tailgating you.

The races are split up in different categories, with each providing a unique style of gameplay. A Power Race is a traditional race to the finish line with passive weapons such as oil slicks, land mines, and speed boosts. This was my least favorite of the race types, as I was more interested in making things explode as opposed to simply just racing. In my opinion, the real fun is found in the Battle Races. As you might have guessed, they allow you to mount your weapon of choice to your car and settle things with both speed and violence. Knockout is similar to a battle race, except that it is essentially a ‘last-man-standing’ style game mode where at the end of each lap whoever is in last place is eliminated (well, blown up) until only one car remains. There are also sponsored events that help you to unlock bonuses and tournaments which, as mentioned before, allow you to move onto the next racing tier. As I said before, any of the modes that allow you to shoot opponents until they explode are preferred.

As you race, you move up (or down if you’re bad) the standings and get cash based on your performance. You can also get bonuses for accomplishing tasks during the race, like taking out a specific racer or landing multiple mine hits in one race. The bonuses add an interesting element to the game, as you might find yourself targeting a specific racer instead of trying to just pass him for position. There were times I would intentionally drive slow behind another driver simply so I could pummel them with ammo until they exploded, simply because I wanted that bonus cash. Cruel? Yes. Did I make a lot of money quickly? Hell yeah.

Gas Guzzlers Extreme Review - Smashed Car

I may have won the race but I lost the war…

After a bunch of races in my purple “Fat Ficho” (which looks like a Fiat 500), I had already saved up quite a bit of cash. With the money, you are able to buy new cars or invest in your existing ride. You can upgrade the tires for added grip, the brakes for stopping power, the engine for more power, and so on. As you race with each vehicle, you also unlock rims and racing stickers that you can use to customize your ride. If you choose to buy a new car, you’ll find yourself looking at a line up of vehicles that are clearly inspired by cars of today and yesteryear. Whether it be the El Matador (Lamborghini Aventador) or the familiar Hound DX (mid-90s Honda Civic DX), you’ll see ‘faithfully inspired’ cars that you’ll be itching to unlock. There’s 18 cars in total, with each progressively getting more powerful as you move through the tiers.

The cars are wonderfully modelled and very accurately detailed. In fact, the entire game looks phenomenal. The lighting effects are superb, the cars looks absolutely awesome, and the damage effects are spot on. The game also looks great and scales well when you tune the graphics down for multiplayer matches, where you’ll want to make sure you’re running at max fps. The soundtrack is awesome as well, and the game is filled with hilarious tidbits that will make you laugh out loud from time to time. And while the controls are ‘arcade-y’, they are also tight and fit the atmosphere of the game perfectly. They are the perfect balance of having the simplicity of being able to just drive and have fun, while at the same time requiring skill to get to the podium.

Gas Guzzlers Extreme Review - Damaging

Come on man! I just need to hit 88mph to travel back in time.

While the singleplayer experience is enjoyable, the game genuinely shines in multiplayer. We had the privilege of playing Gas Guzzlers: Extreme multiplayer for a night with the Gamepires dev team and we had an absolute blast. Even though they kicked our asses in every conceivable way, the game was a ton of fun. The multiplayer features all of the singleplayer racing modes, as well as multiplayer-specific modes including deathmatch and capture-the-flag. The deathmatch was furious and extremely fun, as we played both with teams and as a massive free-for-all. The action was relentless and in the end, the Gamepires crew bested us every match. The capture-the-flag was also exciting, with teamplay being critical to success and individual heroics resulting in cheers and angry swears in Croatian.

Honestly, the multiplayer of Gas Guzzlers: Extreme might be its best feature… but there’s a problem. With the exception of the dev match we had organized, I was unable to replicate that experience by myself as the public multiplayer servers were usually empty. Sometimes you’d get lucky and find a few racers online, but never did I experience a full match like we had that night. This is really unfortunate because it truly isn’t the developer’s fault that there aren’t many people online, but its worth noting because it may be difficult for those looking for an engaging online racer to find the matches they so desperately want to play in.

Gas Guzzlers Extreme Review: Fast and Furious
Gas Guzzlers: Extreme is a great game with a lot to offer racing fans. Its focus on furious action is a refreshing change for racers who primarily play racing sims where you aren't allowed to attach a chaingun to your roof. Its a charming game with a great sense of humor that will bring a smile to your face. It is extremely unfortunate that the multiplayer portion of the game is currently under-populated, as it prevents the game from reaching its full potential. In the end, its a fun game that does what it sets out to do very well. Its worth the purchase, especially if you can bring some friends along for the multiplayer.
The Good
  • Great action! Shooting at cars is fun.
  • Solid racing and battling modes.
  • Awesome visuals.
The Bad
  • Finding multiplayer games is tough.
  • Progression through singleplayer feels a tad slow.
8.5Overall Score
Reader Rating: (14 Votes)
8.6