I recently had the chance to play The Crew: Calling All Units, the second expansion to the 2014 street racing game from Ubisoft. The Crew was a title I always felt like I should have spent more time with. The street racing game was released in a crowded holiday window, and something about the way the cars controlled resulted in me bouncing off the game fairly quickly. But I always respected what Ubisoft was trying to accomplish with the game’s enormous map of the United States, RPG-like progression system, and free-roaming online multiplayer. While there were a few kinks to work out at launch, the game managed to deliver on its promise of being a true open-world racing MMO.
Ubisoft has been hard at work on the game since that initial launch, addressing player feedback and fixes and gameplay tweaks, and adding new content and features. Last year’s Wild Run expansion introduced motorcycles, monster trucks, drift cars, and drag racers to the game, and gave it a complete graphical overhaul to boot. In many ways, The Crew is very different than the original game that launched in 2014.
Cops Vs Racers Mode
The new Calling All Units expansion adds a ton of new content to the game, but the main draw here is the cops versus racers chase gameplay. In this mode, a racer picks up one of many crates distributed throughout the map. This triggers a chase where the racer must outrun the police to deliver the crate to a drop-off point. The police, meanwhile, try to chase the racer down and stay close enough for a countdown timer to reach zero, which results in an arrest.
PVP and PVE
Both AI and other players can control the police. This means that even if no other players are around at the time, the computer AI will still attempt to chase the racer player. Other players can hop in and join a chase at any time, so players shouldn’t be too quick to think a chase will be a cakewalk just because it starts out against the computer AI.
Both sides have at their disposal several special abilities that they can use to try to outwit the other side. During the demo, I got to play as both the cops and racers. The police could call in helicopter support or trigger an electromagnetic pulse to disrupt the racer’s controls. The racer had access to an unlimited nitro ability and a flashbang that temporarily blinded all police, immediately resetting the arrest timer. The powers felt evenly matched, and I always felt my racer was staying just out of reach of the police, or that I was closing in on my target when I was the cop.
The expansion includes a 12-mission story mode that teaches players the basics of being a cop, and lets you ride in custom police vehicles while collecting parts, vehicles, and XP. This story serves as a good introduction to the new mode so that you can handle yourself when out patrolling the highways and streets of The Crew.
What Else Is New in The Crew: Calling All Units?
When The Crew: Calling All Units launches this November, all players will gain access to the newly raised level cap of 60, whether they own Calling All Units or not. Surprisingly enough, these players will also have full access to the racer gameplay, including special abilities, freedrive chases, and a new heat map providing them with the daily location of the crates spread throughout the world. They will be able to get a taste of the police gameplay through an all-new prologue mission. The expansion also includes a variety of new cars for both the police and racer factions.
The Crew: Calling All Units will be available as a downloadable expansion for The Crew. It is also included in The Crew Ultimate Edition that also includes the original game, Wild Run, and the Season pass vehicles and customization options. Calling All Units and The Crew Ultimate Edition will both be available Nov. 29 2016.