The Crew Reviews

461,090 (241,105)
TA Score for this game: 4,634
Posted on 11 December 14 at 01:36, Edited on 04 June 16 at 11:50
This review has 32 positive votes and 4 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
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Ever since the E3 trailer was released last year, this game left me intrigued. In the trailer, we were shown almost everything the game had to offer. A vast open world, multiple different car setups and social play and interaction. So, the question is this - is The Crew like what we've been lead to believe, or has it failed on its promises?

A quick overview first. The Crew is the first game developed by Ivory Tower, a French studio made up of ex Eden Games employees (of Test Drive Unlimited fame). Ubisoft Reflections also contributed on the game's development. After two delays, the game was finally released on December 2nd, 2014, in all regions.

When you first start up the game, you're thrown into the action head-on, with you taking control of a Ford pickup in a desperate attempt to escape the cops. The (roughly) hour long prologue does a good job of setting the stage for the rest of the game, as well as introducing us to the story and the characters.

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You play the part of the main character, Alex Taylor (voiced by Troy Baker). In the prologue, he witnesses the death of his brother, Dayton, who is the leader (or "V8") of the street-racing gang the 5-10s. The killer is Shiv, a jealous V4 who wants - and succeeds - at becoming the leader. To back him up is the corrupt FBI worker Agent Corburn, who frames Alex with his brothers murder. Cut to five years later where we meet Zoe, an FBI agent who allows for Alex's release, on the condition he takes on an undercover mission to infiltrate the gang and track down those who wronged him.

The 62 story missions (which should take around 20 hours of play) are quite varied and do their best to add to the overall story. The voice acting is top-notch, although there are some notable slips in the script. Although the majority of reviewers have nothing but negativity to place on the story, you can't deny it is one of the best in any recent racing game. It deals with multiple topics, such as revenge, compassion and bravery. There isn't much room for improvement in this area, at least in my opinion. After all, this isn't a TellTale game.

Of course, the player isn't limited to the story missions. Littered throughout the vast open world United States there are (the Ubisoft trademark) data stations and car wrecks to find, landmarks to visit and nearly 600 "skill challenges" to complete. These challenges are a welcome distraction and offer rewards depending on the resulting score. For an added competitive edge, your friend's scores are there to beat.

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The rewards offered from the completion of story missions and skill challenges come in the form of upgrade parts for your car. From weight reduction to suspension and brake upgrades, they get progressively better as you level up. Added to that are the four tiers: bronze, silver, gold and (once you reach the level cap of 50) platinum. The better your car's parts, the higher your car level. The highest level (1299) requires all parts to be a level 50 platinum, which can lead to the requirement of "farming" as the level of a platinum part is completely random. This level also requires you to have maxed performance perks, which offer small percentage upgrades to performance of all cars, such as handling and acceleration.

Or you can forget everything and do just one thing - drive. With over 10,000 miles of road, you won't be running out of sights to see anytime soon. The Crew's map is, to put it simply, massive. Its closest rival, Forza Horizon 2, has a map that takes around 15 minutes to do a complete loop of. In The Crew, the figure is roughly three hours. There is a faction mission and an achievement relating to doing this.
The CrewEnduring SpiritThe Enduring Spirit achievement in The Crew worth 106 pointsComplete the Faction Mission Landmark Tour in a Crew (2-4 players).

I did it myself, and it is an experience I won't be repeating anytime soon....

Speaking of faction missions, there are three in each of the five zones in The Crew's map, all of which vary in length from five minutes to the aforementioned three hours. Upon completion, you are rewarded with reputation points, which add to your faction's dominance and increase your daily earnings. There are five factions to choose from. There isn't any advantage in choosing one over another, which is a missed opportunity.

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The Crew allows up to four players to team up and do whatever they desire, whether that is co-op on the campaign missions to simply exploring the different areas on the map. I can't comment on this feature that much since I haven't really used it, although I encountered no connection problems when I did.

That's not to say I didn't encounter any problems at all. For the first few days of release, I (and lots of other people) encountered complete resets of statistics, including mileage which is required for one achievement. The daily, weekly and monthly challenges, each of which have an achievement for their completion, have been displayed as being "offline" for quite a few days for me as well.

I feel I have to address this in some way or another. Yes, the game does have microtransactions. They are used to receive "Crew Credits" which in turn can be used to buy cars, parts and perk points. Yes, they spoil the look of the game and make it seem "pay to win", but they are minimal and not needed at all. Firstly, you get 100,000 Crew Credits when you first join a faction. This is more than enough to pay for an expensive car and have some left in return. The thing is, the other form of currency in the game ("Bucks") aren't in short supply. In fact, you can make B500,000 just by visiting all of the landmarks, and you receive a generous amount upon the completion of a PvP race. At the end of the day, the microtransactions can be made void if you spend time and put effort into the game, like you should do in the first place.

Finally, the most important part of a game to some - the achievements. they are quite varied and touch upon most of the things that are possible in the game. Some are trivial and easy, such as the We Don't Need Roads achievement:
The CrewSecret AchievementThe Secret Achievement achievement in The Crew worth 15 pointsContinue playing to unlock this secret achievement

while others ramp up the difficulty to the point where they will only be achieved by the most patient and seasoned of gamers, such as the The Extra Mile achievement:
The CrewThe Extra MileThe The Extra Mile achievement in The Crew worth 849 pointsEarn Platinum medals from all Story Missions.

If you've got a lot of time on your hands, all should be perfectly possible to unlock.

My experience with The Crew was mostly positive and I enjoyed the content the game had to offer. One week and 50 hours later, I'm still nowhere near finished. This is a game I'll be playing for a while. For fans of open-world racing games, this is a must-buy. Although if you are a fan of open-world racing games, you're probably playing this already.
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