So there I was crossing the finish line in the open beta for The Crew 2. In most racing games, I would expect to either have my car taken control of by the AI or to be transported into the open world. In this case it was in fact the latter, but I was not intended to simply drive off toward the next destination. Oh no. As I started to drive off, my eyes opened wide as the last thing that I expected to see in a racing game appeared before my eyes: loot.
The familiar blue and green colors of loot appeared before me like manna from heaven. It was beautiful, unexpected, and, honestly, hilarious. I actually couldn’t stop laughing seeing this appear in the game in a way that is identical to Destiny’s engrams. These weird shapes were on the ground and were now waiting for me to scoop them up. Instead of running (or sliding) toward them with my guardian, though, I was driving my Audi over the top of them.
I don’t really know why this caught me so off guard, but it did. I think that I find the evolution of racing games to be comical as each new entry seems to add something strange or gimmicky from other games or from entirely different genres. We have had dark stories served up with real, live action actors from Need for Speed (which are usually laughably bad) to always online functions being added with other racing titles (mainly Need for Speed again). There always seems to be some kind of odd thing added into racing games, and I think that The Crew 2 may take the cake for the weirdest addition with loot.
After driving over the engrams (as I am going to call them because that is exactly what they are), I was awarded random items to use when modifying my car. They could have just been granted to me upon completion, but the developers thought it necessary to entice the player by physically dropping random loot in front of the car for you to pick up. There was even a guy commentating this occurrence and instructing me to pick up the loot in order to gain some sweet rewards for my ride. It was a very surreal experience to have in a racing game.
There is, of course, nothing wrong with this feature, but I find it funny seeing racing games seemingly give in to the peer pressure of the games around them. We are now seeing a racing game feel the need to include a Destiny-type loot system into the game. And all that you get (from what I encountered, at least) are just car parts. These aren’t interesting pieces of loot and are definitely not worth the “suspense” of driving over them and waiting for what is inside to be revealed.
Again, there is nothing wrong with this system being added into the game, but it is a system that I can’t help but laugh at. And, not in a “Wow, you guys are stupid.” way, but more of an “Aw, that is so cute!” way. It seems that the game is feeling the need to fit in with its peers and is trying to dress just like big brother. It is pretty adorable.
There is nothing malicious or wrong about this system, but the game could simply grant you these items directly into your inventory rather than taking this extra step. There really is nothing interesting about driving over these pieces of loot. At least the loot appears in front of you and doesn’t require you to redirect your car in order to receive your rewards.
I really think that this system could be left out. It is unnecessary and seems to only be there as a type of gacha maneuver with trying to offer a sense of excitement out of the possibility of what you may receive. The only problem is that it seems to only offer mufflers and what not. I don’t think that this system really works for a racing game, but I could be completely wrong. Maybe there are people stoked on receiving a new car parts, but it felt really underwhelming to me personally. At least they aren’t paid loot boxes, right?