Feature: The Crew 2, a game filled with diversity

The racing genre is as old as the industry itself. Beating a competitor, whether it’s AI or another human, is something that is instilled deep within each gamer and the racing genre has always been the perfect catalyst to bring that element out of any person. The Crew 2 is taking this to yet another level by offering players a wealth of vehicle types to perfect. If you want diversity in a racing game you’ll find it here.

With Ubisoft’s sequel players will be taking to the ground, water and air as they try to impress the various families in the game. The aim is to ultimately gain enough followers to become the biggest badass in that specific discipline and with that, you’ll be taking quite a bit of time to master each aspect the game has to throw at you. Any racing veteran will take to the road first and that’s probably a good place to start.

The Crew 2 wants players to embrace the huge open world. With that, there are two types of racing to take part in – street racing and off-road events. The former is your typical modern take on racing where you have to compete with various checkpoints within strict confines. Are you after that hypercar with enough boost to blast a rocket into space? You’ll find what you’re looking for here. No, you’re not going to get into the best car right away, but in time you’ll work your way up the family to unlock those beauties. There’s also much to enjoy in the off-road races where you’ll be on the lookout for checkpoints. How you make your way to these checkpoints is up to you, as long as you pass through them you’re good to go. It comes with a lot of freedom and it’s also here that you’ll be enjoying off-road bikes. Zipping past close-knit trees and ramping off hills on your bike is an exhilarating feeling, but it comes with the risk that you’ll very likely eat some dirt on your way to the finish line. Bikes are often the forgotten stepchild in the genre, so it’s good to see it supported both on and off-road. Still, there is much more and this is where we look at the new additions. It’s time to test the waters in a boat.

At a glance, you might think that steering a boat is the most boring thing on earth, but Ivory Towers had other ideas. The speedboats, as with the various other vehicle types, can be upgraded too. It affects the handling, speed and power and is perhaps one of the tougher disciplines as water physics aren’t easy to deal with. Early on you’ll be on the wide open waters racing to beat your rivals as you make your way over the ocean and underneath massive bridges, but things get real messy when you enter the swamp areas. Courses are twisty and narrow and, though it’s a breeding ground for alligators, it’s also a breeding ground for spotting shortcuts. You can quite literally ramp off small islands to gain an advantage. It’s hard to believe that boats can be made this much fun, but it’s a reality. Thanks to the unique feature in The Crew 2 these ramps can aid you in morphing into a plane and, let me tell you, this is a whole different beast.

Dealing with vertical space is something many players just aren’t used to. Your next checkpoint could be on top of a skyscraper followed by one that has you just about touching the tarmac, and then you still have events requiring you to pull off death-defying stunts. Flying your plane upside-down is an enormous amount of fun, but when you’re doing that centimetres from the ground with controls that have now inverted, it has the adrenaline pumping as one small twitch in the wrong direction will see your plane crashing and going up in smoke. The freedom you have in the air is just unparalleled in any other racing game and it’s going to be interesting to see how online players take to the new feature. The Crew 2 has something on offer for all players and you can mix and match it up as you please. The diversity doesn’t end there as it begs you to include your friends for some challenges.

The game will calculate when you’ve pulled off an impressive air, drift or reached great speeds on a specific stretch and will automatically prompt you if you would like to leave a challenge for friends. Should you accept it’ll keep you up to speed whether anyone has beaten any of your times. Now, keep in mind that the US map is humongous this time. I’ve not yet travelled across the map, but I went on a little tour up the snowy mountains, just above Las Vegas, through to the steep and busy hills of San Francisco. It took me close to 30 mins to drive that short distance filled with challenges. The Crew 2 is all about challenges, but if you want it to be a chilled Sunday afternoon drive it can be that too.

The game wants you to explore its huge open world. You decide what vehicle speaks to you and explore the terrain. Impress your families, challenge your friends and just take a ride on the wild side. Enjoy the trip.

The Crew 2 launches this coming Friday for PC, PS4 and Xbox One.

Disclaimer: This article was sponsored. The content was created in-house and we chose the topic and tone of the article.

Married to a gamer and she kicks my ass at most shooters. If the game is enjoyable I'll play it, no matter the format.

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