Racing through the scenic Hawaii
Prices vary; PS4, PS5 (reviewed), Xbox Series One, Xbox Series X|S, PC
Ever since we got a chance to play the Forza Horizon series on the Xbox and PC, we have always wondered what if Forza Horizon was released on the PlayStation platform. Now thanks to Ubisoft, consider our wish fulfilled. Developer, Ubisoft Ivory Tower takes inspiration from Playground Games’ hit franchise, repackages it as The Crew Motorfest and delivers an almost similar experience, if not the same for PlayStation users to enjoy.
The 2018 Crew 2 allowed players to travel through the vast American land, but The Crew Motorfest goes for a more compact, tighter map. The game is set on the island of O‘ahu, Hawaii, and just like Forza Horizon style, a motoring festival has taken over the island giving players unprecedented access to explore the pristine landscapes with breathtaking views in the vehicle of your choice.
There are a few ways to enjoy the beautiful vistas Hawaii has to offer – go on a ‘Freedrive’ that lets you just roam around the island, or you can play through the thematic campaigns called Playlists. There are around 15 Playlists to play through the game and each comes with a specific objective, gameplay, rewards and music. For instance, the Hawaii scenic tour takes you through different parts of Hawaii in a loaned vehicle. The Made in Japan Playlist tips its hat to the Japanese underground street racing scene and the Vintage Garage takes you back to simpler times with classic cars. You will also find Playlists like Rule the Streets or Dream Cars from real-life car enthusiasts like James Pumphrey (Donut Media) or Alexandra Hirschi aka Supercar Blondie. In short, there’s something for everyone, and Ubisoft will continue to introduce new Playlists that give players an incentive to return to the game and complete them for rewards.
The Crew Motorfest has a wide range of over 600 vehicles, but expanding your collection can take some time. One can, of course, buy vehicles from the in-game money they earn while finishing races or as rewards by completing Playlists. Another way to expand the collection if you have played The Crew 2 is that you can import the existing collection to the new game. The vehicles are amazingly detailed, including the cockpit area. The only gripe on detailing is the foggy mirrors rendering them unusable in the cockpit camera mode, which suggests Ubisoft wants players to use the external camera mode and enjoy the views.
Driving, sailing or even flying is fun that can be instantly changed with the click of the R3 button. But don’t expect it to be sim-like. It’s an arcade racer at the end of the day. The game lets you upgrade the vehicles by applying ‘Perf Parts’ that can improve the overall performance of a particular vehicle.
On the multiplayer front, the game offers live competitions via Custom Show, Demolition Royale, Grand Race and the Summit Contest. We enjoyed the few Demolition Royale games, but finding players takes a while.
The Crew Motorfest comes with its share of quirks. In addition to the foggy mirrors, the mandatory online requirement is cumbersome and won’t allow to play the game if we are disconnected from the internet. However, The Crew Motorfest is the most fun we have had from an arcade racer recently and scratches the itch of playing a Forza Horizon-like game on the PlayStation platform.
WE’RE IMPRESSED Vehicles, Visuals
WE’D IMPROVE Always-online
THE LAST WORD The Hawaiian setting for The Crew Motorfest coupled with a huge vehicle roster and activities makes it a fun racing game