It hasn’t been too long since I played the last Fast and the Furious game so it was time to check out the latest one. It has certainly raised the bar compared to last time and it’s a fun playthrough. It’s a bit on the short side though, you’ll certainly be able to beat it in under 10 hours. Aside from the first two levels which I played on day 1, I conquered the rest in one sitting. This is not a game you buy to play for a full month vacation.
The story starts by introducing us to the two main characters Vienna and Cam. They seem to be running away from some kind of dark past but have finally found themselves at peace in a new city. This doesn’t last though when one of Vienna’s friends gets himself wrapped up in some mob business that’s connected with a global terrorist group. Dom and Letty have been on this case for a while but the villain group led by Emil is rather tricky to pin down. They always seem to be one step ahead. Perhaps Vienna and Cam can help Dom’s crew gets the edge here. It’s high risk but then again, the main characters are probably doomed otherwise. Will they be able to gain enough skills to actually take down the villains or will it be curtains for them.
Right away you can appreciate the solid graphics here. The level designs are on point and the world feels really large. It’s really like something out of a Need for Speed game. Granted, I don’t think there actually is a free roam option although I could be mistaken. Each level makes you feel like you can just go off track and do whatever you want though. There are a lot of shortcuts you can use in each level by going off the path. Occasionally you will bump into an invisible wall though and the short cut ends up being the long way around. You have to choose your routes carefully but it’s certainly a good feeling when you find the right path.
The levels are polished and that’s absolutely what you want to see in a game like this. Now once in a while they can go a bit overboard on the effects like the desert level where you can’t see anything. It might be realistic but I’d actually like to see the level instead of sand clogging up the mirror. If you throw on your nitro while in the sand storm it’s really a trippy experience as the whole screen turns a dark red and it’s like you’re in the underworld. Beyond that level it’s always clear to see what is happening though.
The game isn’t very difficult. You should be able to beat most of the levels on the first try. The only two that gave me some trouble was one mission where you couldn’t let your partner die and one where you have to beat the main villain before he got too far away. That one was tough because of how fast he goes but fortunately each level has a lot of checkpoints so you never have to go too far. That’s definitely a critical point because having to replay a whole level would be unfortunate so this was just really good stage design.
The soundtrack’s more on the forgettable side. I doubt you will remember it at all. For the characters, they’re okay but the film crew steals the show so I wouldn’t have minded if they were the main characters instead. Vienna get a tragic backstory that we don’t fully learn about until the final 2 minutes of the game so the writers really took their time here. She has a clear reason to fight and a lot of development throughout so they did a good job with her. Cam is here as the tough character who is always disobeying orders to run in and get the job done. This tends to work out more often than not and seeing as how everyone is always defying orders here, Cam fits right in.
From the movie cast you’ve really just got 3 characters who get a lot of screen time here. First up is Roman who has to handle the undercover part of the job. He really does take the biggest risks here so you feel bad for him with how nervous the guy gets. It’s fortunate that he is able to stay so calm under pressure. I would have liked to have seen more of him since he was great in all of his appearances. Then you have Dom coming in clutch as always but he might get the smallest role of the 3 since he’s always dashing off. When the game enters the climax and a huge rocket appears you know that he is really their only chance now.
Letty has a lot of connections and is also the one to find the new main characters so she contributed quite a lot to the group. Vienna tries to make things personal quite a few times and fortunately Letty doesn’t back down. She’s not the kind of character who will take any disrespect without some kind of comeback. The villains in the story are less noticeable though. The leader is a guy named Emil but there really isn’t anything to him. He’s just an old guy who wants to cause a lot of chaos and deal a blow to America. It all comes down to money for him.
There actually aren’t a lot of races in this game. Most of the gameplay is following other cars, getting somewhere on time, or even fighting against other cars. There are only maybe 2-3 races if I recall correctly. The races are typically the toughest levels in the game though so it works out that they’re gone. I would win them but it would come down to the wire because it took me some time to get the turning under control. Once that was in the bag then it was off to the races for me. There are also some quick time events like jumping onto a truck but you never control anyone outside of the car so this isn’t completely like Pursuit Force just yet. Maybe for the sequel.
There isn’t a whole lot of replay value here though. So the main story will last you some hours but after that you really just have online and some trophy hunting to keep you busy. I don’t expect either option will last you for too long. I mean, the online will take a lot of matches to get the Platinum if you pursue it, but if you don’t have PS+ then I don’t see the offline options keeping you around for very long. This is definitely a game that you beat and then put away.
Overall, Fast & Furious Crossroads is a solid game. I certainly would have liked to have seen the story be a bit longer but in the end I don’t have any big complaints. It ends up executing well on what you would expect for a game set in the Furious universe. You have high intensity races and car battles from start to finish. The story quickly goes off the rails with the rocket showing up and it feels out really crazy like the movies tend to be. If you want a vehicular battle game then this is the one for you.