When most racing game enthusiasts think of The Crew Motorfest an immediate comparison is made to Forza Horizon. Before going on any further with this review let’s get the comparisons out of the way. While Forza Horizon has its “festival” The Crew has its “Motorfest”. While Forza does an amazing job of showcasing that aspect both in and outside gameplay, The Crew struggles with sending any indication there’s any sort of event going on.
The world of Motorfest is beautiful and that’s undeniable, partly thanks to its location in O’ahu, Hawaii. This installment of The Crew actually integrated biomes and landmarks from other Hawaiian islands in their own recreation. Those biomes include Meadows, Urban Areas, Volcano Slopes, Fields, Dry zones, Mountains, Beaches, and Rainforests. These areas however don’t represent or showcase the racing festival theme. Some balloons, fireworks, or any gathering hubs would’ve sufficed but I strongly believe that Ubisoft thought setting the game in Hawaii was enough. It was Motorfest but it just felt like random races in an arcade-like racer.
Speaking of races, what I did appreciate from The Crew Mortorfest was the different variety of playlists made available. Each playlist acts as the main storyline in Motorfest. Now I’ll admit game commentary while completing playlists was rather awkward with its stale delivery paired with cheesy dialogue. Putting that aside listening to different facts and trivia about the cars being raced was a really nice touch. If a non-gear head like myself found these tidbits riveting I can only imagine what a true one would think.
Continuing with the playlists, Each one has its own theme with its own set of vehicles to be raced. One moment players can be in Neo Tokyo drifting with cars solely made in Japan, and in the next, they are flying and driving along the coasts of the Hawaii Ocean. The more playlists that are completed others will be unlocked along with different vehicles and side activities. Those activities can consist of different feats. Some can be as simple as photo ops, and some will have players completing professional stunts. While there is only a short amount of playlists at the moment Ubisoft has promised additional ones as the season progresses.
In terms of car customization, The Crew Motorsport falls short. Card parts are earned in the form of cards earned from completing races or leveling up. It’s simple but at the same time, it makes customization underwhelming. Along with its straightforwardness, the handling of cars is much easier when drifting and making sharp corners. Even someone who hasn’t touched a racing game before could attempt such a feat.
All online play reminds me too heavily of Riders Republic, another Ubisoft title. Online racing uses the drop-in mechanic allowing gamers to join whatever activity or race they please. The competitive game modes do lack a bit of variety with only a grand race, custom shows, a weekly PVE competition, and a battle royale mode. At times I found myself having more fun doing the playlists solo than going online for the standard races. The Battle Royale was a unique addition but ultimately lost its entertainment factor after some time. The races begin to become repetitive.
Instead of this big grand festival and hotspot, The Crew Motorsport reminds me of an arcade-styled racer you’d find at a convention. While there are aspects that could be better I genuinely had fun with this title. While driving and customizing cars isn’t as intricate as some may like it to be, It still works with Motorsport. The different playlists will have gamers experiencing different vehicles while receiving a bit of a history lesson about them. Again it’s not a festival but Hawaii was an excellent choice to show off Motorsport. Graphically this game is absolutely beautiful, cruising around the different areas of O’ahu.
The Crew Motorsport separates itself from Forza Horizon. While Its simple nature may be a turn-off for some others may see it as a nice change of pace from the realism of racing. The open world of Hawaii does have a rather small map but with new content being added seasonally, The Crew Motorsport can keep gamers coming back for more.Become a Patron!
This game was reviewed based on Xbox S|X review code, using an Xbox S|X console. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by publisher.