Ubisoft has made it a habit to design games that are pure pleasure for our eyes, and The Crew 2 is no different. Full of rich environments and vehicles the game is a spectacle for the eyes but, is that enough to make it a good game? Sure, it has an array of cars, bikes, powerboats and aircraft all in one game, but having a lot of elements is not all a game needs.
I played The Crew 2 for a couple of weeks on the PC, and here is my review of the open world vehicle racing game from Ubisoft that unleashed a player in a fictitious USA.
Graphics, Music and Cinematics of The Crew 2
Let’s begin with the most basic and the first thing that we notice about a game – the graphics. And in the case of The Crew 2, there are only good things to talk about in this regard. The visuals used in the game are comparable to that of the other Ubisoft games that we have seen recently such as Assassin’s Creed Origins.
The difference here is that the visuals are much more complicated with the appearance being of the modern day cities and roads and vehicles. But the visuals did not break character even for a second and were crisp as ever. The vehicles in the game are accurate descriptions of their real world counterparts and when races are on the physics seem to have been depicted accurately, at least visually.
The graphics are sophisticated enough to make you feel like you are watching a real race from time to time. As for the cinematics involved in the game the humans seems to have been in the second tier of priority for the design team and would sometimes feel a little stock. The cut-scenes are not exactly out of this world since the story does not quite allow it to be, but more on that later.
As for the music in the game, it has become a tradition of sorts for racing games to feature some excellent thumping numbers to provide a good aural pace for players. We have seen that time and again with the Need for Speed games and The Crew 2 also has some cool tracks to blast out on the speakers.
Story and Content of The Crew 2
On to the next essential element of any good game – the story. Though many would argue that a good racing game does not really need a story, i would argue back and say that there is always merit to a game that has one. Now this is where I feel that The Crew 2 lags behind; the story line of the game, though present, is hardly impressive and lacks depth bulk and proper characters.
We get to watch stranded characters with each different type of vehicle race circuit, which in turn gives the characters hardly any screen time to form a bond with the players. Of course this makes the races more important, but here as well, we seem to see a lack of depth.
In terms of content, the game lags behind. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of cars, boats, bikes, planes, monster trucks and heck, even F1 cars to race around with. But the races are not enough and even the ones that are there seem to become repetitive.
Though there are races that involve multiple vehicles and we get to see a boat transform into a plane or a car, there just aren’t enough of those as well. And in many ways this game is reminiscent of the previous one.
Controls and Gameplay of The Crew 2
The controls of the game vary for each of the vehicles, though not by much. Controlling cars is the easiest and having playing racing games quite a bit, I didn’t have much difficulty winning races, even the harder ones. It pretty much holds true for the monster trucks and bikes as well, which are also simple enough to control. But it’s another matter when it came to planes and boats.
For one, the power boat races on the rivers might seem easy, but it’s a whole different ball game when it came to racing in the ocean. The waves essentially work like speed breakers and timing the lean up and down is the key. Flying is also one of the more difficult tasks to learn in this game and involves quite a few tricks.
Coming to the gameplay experience of the whole game, the races seem fluid enough, but I was surprised the first time I hit the fences and saw that my speed hardly dropped. There are some lapses in the physics as well and we see vehicles make massive jumps and yet land on all four tyres. The driver – or rider in case of a bike – seems superhuman and can take 100 feet jumps on a bike that is not landing on a ramp with perfect ease.
There were no visible glitches, but the game could definitely use an update for the physics and collision mechanics. The vehicle upgrade loot system seems flawed as winning the same race keep awarding better items. In other words, this game needs some rework.
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The Crew 2 is a visually stunning game that comes with different kinds of vehicles and races for the racing fanatic. But it tends to become boring after and point and the need to provide variety seems to have sapped the merit for good bulk content.
At a price of Rs 2,999 for the Standard Edition right now, the game seems to lack the content. If you are a fan of the first game then by all means, go ahead and buy it for the stunning visuals and the new vehicles you can drive. But for first timers, I would suggest you wait it out, until it gets some more content.