Instead of a full review – which may still take a while, because of reasons… – here just a short analogy of Sony and Evolution Studios latest PS4 exclusive:
DriveClub is like a smartphone without an internet connection. Nice to look at and full of possibilities that are sometimes quite hard to really grasp but at the end rather disappointing, because really everything you can do right now is some basic stuff every other phone of the last ten years can do as well. Some of them even longer and without breaking or other hiccups.
Basically, it’s rather pointless. If you want to really USE your smartphone you’re connected to the internet. You want to stay in contact with your friends via social networks, you want to stay up-to-date on the latest in the world via social media or more or less “real” media and you want to share your thoughts and achievements. That’s a lot of social interaction and DriveClub promised more of the same. Social interaction, driving with and against your friends, building your own club and climb the latter through achievements.
But all that isn’t possible right now because for the most time, the servers have been weak at best and staying connected for a longer period seemed only be possible if you’re online at night, when the virtual streets are way emptier. But the problem is: The actual number of racers should be much, much higher. Sony promised a free version for every PS+ member. That’s about 7 MILLION people. Sure, not all of them care to play the game but the servers are bad enough right now and there’s no end in sight.
DriveClub shows a lot of good potential and can be fun to play. But right now it’s nothing more than what we saw in the last two console generations – with better graphics. The selling point was the social aspect and thats the only thing which isn’t working right now.
So….I won’t write a full review right now, it just wouldn’t be fair. But then again, should I really wait and wait till the servers are up and running? If a game isn’t fun because the crucial part is broken, you should move on and try alternatives, should you not? Ubisoft’s The Crew is maybe best described as the arcade version of DriveClub – with one exception: it’s still in BETA and the servers run like they should. It may not be a better game but it’s a game with all promises intact. An open world racing game with social interaction and a LOT to do. With DriveClub all you can do right now is play single player or wait with decreasing patience in the lobby in the hopes of maybe getting in two or three races in an hour while staying connected to your friends….