Building (Critical) Consensus: Fuse
I have to admit that I was looking forward to Fuse. I’ve been a fan of Insomniac Games since the Spyro the Dragon days and given that I’ve been wanting something new and fresh to play, Fuse seemed right up my alley. Then the critics got a hold of it and are making me pause.
I’m not exactly a big fan of story-lite games and less so of games that force you to rely on terrible co-op AI. Well, unfortunately, it seems that’s what you have in store for you if you pick up Fuse.
The Escapist (80%): On the surface, Fuse looks a little too much like one of the many gritty and realistic action shooters that populate the third-person genre… While its narrative often takes itself a little too seriously, Fuse is actually a good third-person shooter that’s enjoyable to play with or without a team.
GameSpot (70%): Whether you’re encasing enemies in black crystalline deathtraps or vaporizing them with a pulse from your protective shield, it’s a lot of fun to team up with friends and take on the challenges of Fuse… Regardless of what mode you play, “with friends” is definitely how this slick near-future shooter thrives, delivering a solid team-based experience with just enough style and substance to keep you entertained.
IGN (65%): This is a loud, chaotic, and fun bit of extraordinary violence in an otherwise lighthearted world, but it rarely achieves the greatness it strives for… Success comes when the unacceptable teammate A.I. is replaced by a group of friends unleashing the awesome power of their alien-powered weaponry. Fuse is an all-or-nothing experience, though. Bring a full crew or don’t waste your time.
Giant Bomb (60%): Fuse’s gameplay has some good ideas, but they don’t carry enough weight in what’s otherwise a shooter campaign the like of which you’ve almost certainly seen before… Fuse plays pretty well, but with smoother execution and a more cohesive identity, it would have an easier time standing out in a genre that, as this generation of consoles comes to a close, is wearing out its welcome more and more.
Destructoid (40%): Fuse does feel every bit like another victim of the heavily focus-tested, leader following, perpetually terrified mainstream game industry. It’s every cloying and desperate element of the retail console market, brought together — fused, if you will — to create a factory standard example of a game that tries to be everything the hypothetical mainstream consumer drools over, and ends up as nothing remarkable.