This has been one of the most frustrating games I have ever had to review, not because of the game; the game is great… The issue is with the servers and the fact that the game has always online DRM. I’m Speedy Boi Ben, and welcome to my review of The Crew 2’s Beta: Shitty Server edition.
Okay, so maybe the servers aren’t as bad as the intro makes out, the game is in Open Beta,` meaning that anyone who wants a glimpse of the game can jump in and play… And a lot of people are. The whole purpose of the Beta is to stress test the online servers by letting people come and bombard the servers by playing the game. This game also happens to be one of the biggest Betas I have ever seen – The entire map is unlocked, you can level up until you reach the top of the Popular Rank (End of the second rank), and you have access to all the races that are unlocked with that rank (Around 120 races total). Then you also have all of the in-world activities as well, high-speed records, outrun challenges and slalom challenges to name a few… You also have access to the entire range of vehicles, for all classes. This Beta is more than just a glimpse of the game. It is the game.
Putting the problems of Ubisoft’s servers aside, the game beneath everything is actually really good. I first started playing the game when I received a code to download the closed beta of the game, where I started to get a feel for the game and the way that it all worked. Continuing with the Open Beta meant that I could polish off my thoughts and bring this to your faces (Yes, yours); in a previous article I wrote, I talked about the challenges of making an open world racing game… Fundamentally, does the place feel alive? In this game, absolutely yes.
One of the ways that developers can get around the issue of not having enough people traffic / people / life around is by letting people play together. This game has multiplayer fully integrated, even within the various Disciplines HQs – This means you can go out onto the street, find a random person and start a drag race, or jump into your plane and freestyle with your friends. The whole point of the game is to get online with your “Crew” (Friends) and have a ball. One of the few small problems I have with this game though is the variation of traffic. Yes, it’s nice to see real cars in the game but there’s so few that the traffic all looks the same. Throw a few Lambos into the mix. Not everyone in the world likes racing through the streets at 180mph.
Just like every other racing game in the world, the thing that makes the biggest difference is the way that the cars handle. This game has got it down pretty good, some of the sports cars can feel too heavy / grippy considering the amount of power that you have, but with the range of cars available, there isn’t a huge problem. Just in the Street Racing category alone, there are 96 different cars, ranging from a Mazda MX-5 to a Nissan Skyline R34 to the full-blown Lambos. As you move into Pro racing more cars become available with 44 Touring Cars to choose from. I don’t know why you wouldn’t choose the Mercedes-AMG GT3 anyway.
But wait, there’s more… Look the skies and Is that a bird? Is that a plane? Fuck yeah it’s a plane!! Fancy cruising your way across the vista of American sky with a British Spitfire MK IX built in 1942? Well, you can, flying around in stunt planes with plumes of smoke coming out of your ass is also possible. All with friends (And people soon to be your friends) trying to crash into you all at the same time. Now gaze your sights over across the ocean and see high powered speed boats going at it, risking tail bones on chairs as they crash through the mighty sea waves. This game is more than about “Racing” in the sense of normal racing games. This is covering all kinds of styles and disciplines. Mastering it all may be hard, But the process is bloody fun.
So to sum it all up, It’s a pretty great game. Should you get it?
Now, after this glowing review, why wouldn’t I recommend this game? There’s a couple of reasons why. First, the price of the full game that hasn’t even been released. The standard edition of the game is £54.99, going all the way up to £79.99. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have that much burning a hole in my pocket. If the game gets a discount through a sale or PS Plus, go ahead, but the asking price is far too much – The second issue is I just feel that the content can become repetitive just enough for it to be a little boring (Though that may be my fault wanting to drive / fly / boat my way from event to event), especially as there isn’t much of anything representing a story otherwise wanting to be the best racer.
I would normally continue my trend of not placing a score on a review of a Beta version of the game, but… Since this game is fundamentally complete, I will give the game a score of 7.5. Take it with a pinch of salt though because Beta software can change drastically before release. Even if it is just over a week away.
The game is still in open beta until around Midnight tonight (Sunday), so if you want to get your hands on the game, you can download and play on PS4, Xbox One or Steam.