Our parent’s tips to The Crew, from what makes this game great to what to watch out for this is the ultimate 2 minute guide.
1. Genre and story:
The Crew is a racing game set in an open world version of the United States. In the campaign you work through the ranks of an illegal street racing gang, with missions you can carry out alone or with other players. Beyond that, it’s a “living world” with lots more for players to do and explore.
As you drive around this open world version of the US, which lets you drive from coast to coast (albeit much more quickly than you would be able to in real life) you encounter different challenges.
For example, Follow gives you a racing line to follow that gets thinner the longer you manage to stay on it, and Precision gives you a succession of smaller and smaller gates to pass through. The game will record your attempts so that you can try to beat them or let your friends see if they can do better.
You can also create your own crew made up of yourself and other players, and challenge other crews to races and other challenges. The game requires an internet connection even if you decide to play alone. There’s no local multiplayer.
Throughout the game you have the opportunity to drive a wide range of cars from different manufacturers, from Ford to Ferrari.
The Crew is the first game from French studio Ivory Tower, which includes developers who worked on games like Need for Speed, V-Rally, and Test Drive Unlimited.
It’s available for PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Xbox 360, but not for PS3. An app for iOS and Android lets players build cars for the game.
For PS4 and Xbox One, The Crew costs £54.99/$59.99. For PC, the game costs £49.99/$59.99. On Amazon, the 360 version costs around £40/$55. A season pass, which gets you two exclusive vehicles and four car packs to be released monthly, costs £19.99/$24.99.
You’ll need PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live Gold for some of the online features.
The campaign is around 20 hours long, but because of The Crew’s open world, side missions, and online multiplayer, players will spend much more time with the game than that.
6. UK and Europe – PEGI rating and additional consumer information:
In the UK and Europe, PEGI rates The Crew as only appropriate for those aged 12 and older, with content descriptors for mild bad language and violence causing minor injury only. PEGI also mentions that the game “allows the player to interact with other players online”.
The Games Rating Authority expands on its PEGI rating by expanding on the violence and language, stating that “there are some cinematic sequences containing minor violence, one of which shows a man trying to attack another using a wrench”. While the scene is described as “very realistic”, “both men are unhurt”, which means it’s only “considered as minor assault”. As for language, “mild language occurs frequently throughout the game and includes words such as ‘asshole’, ‘bastard’, ‘bitch’, and ‘shit’.”
7. US – ESRB:
In the US, the ESRB rates The Crew as T for Teen, with content descriptors for language, mild blood, mild suggestive themes, and violence, also mentioning “online features that may expose players to unrated user-generated content”.
Some of the violence is in the game itself, e.g. in Takedown missions that “prompt players to ram into other vehicles, eventually causing targets to crash”, while “cutscenes depict more dramatic instances of violence: a man fatally shot; a bloodstain on his shirt is briefly depicted”.
The ESRB is also concerned about “suggestive material” such as the protagonist “watching a woman in a short skirt; the camera briefly lingers on her posterior as she walks by”, as well as dialogue like “You hitting that? Mind if I take a run at it?””
8. Common Sense Media:
No yet rated.
While the focus is on driving, the campaign is set up like an action adventure game, and the focus is around gangs, crime, and violence.
10. Why people play:
Since the best thing about owning a vehicle is the freedom it gives the owner to go wherever they want, an open world racing game in which players can pick and choose missions at their will makes a lot of sense. Naturally, the game couldn’t represent the entire United States, but the fact that it has created a relatively big representation for players to drive across lends the game a sense of realism.
Given that driving games rarely have a particularly interesting campaign, it’s a positive that The Crew has several hours of story. But as the name of the game suggests, multiplayer is the focus, and will be what keeps players coming back to that open world again and again.