The first game had brown levels too:
Who's to say FRN won't also have blue oceanic levels we haven't seen yet? ;)
Thats nowhere near the same kind of look tho.
The Wiiu shot is washed out desaturated-brown/blue compared to the mostly popping colors of the Wii game. Turbine Canyon is probably the worst looking stage on Wii but even that screams "COLOR!" compared to FRN's new screenshot.
The screenshot killed the little hype I had for the game. I mean I am sure it has better looking levels (from its art direction they most certainly wont be alot better tho since all of it will be washed out to have a consistent art direction) it still is bad to chose the worst possible image to release to the public.
This image made me hyped since they said this car is an in-game model. And obviously im a sucker for colors!
But I also hate the "fog overlay" on the top 30% of the screen in vanquish the bloom in WindWaker HD and that almost all anime are washed out today so whatever :)
Btw the Wii screenshot works because orange/yellow + blue is a famous and visually pleasing color combination
I still think it's a big stretch to rule out a game's visual vocabulary from one screen showing a desert environment. There will likely be a number of other settings that are more colourful, not to mention the cars themselves.