With Fast 9’s theatrical release delayed until 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, Fast & Furious Crossroads could have given fans a jolt of vehicular chaos to overcome them. Even with power star Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez and Tyrese Gibson reprising their roles as Dom, Letty, and Roman, respectively, this combat racing experience stutters like a clunker on its last mile, gasping for someone to hit the brakes. . and take it to the junkyard. The campaign, which begins at around five o’clock, has its heart in the right place. There’s huge amounts of chaos, inconsistent twists (as fans expect), a bit of humor courtesy of Roman, and huge defining moments, like cars superhumanly used to tear down a train at great speed. We’re also introduced to two great new characters in the fast-paced world: Vienna (voiced by Sonequa Martin-Green from Star Trek: Discovery fame) and Cam (voiced by Asia Kate Dillon, who is currently on Billions). Their personalities blend in well with the existing team and give the game that overall vibe that is always present in the film series. However, their character models and animations are rough and some of their dialogue is uplifted, but I enjoyed the wacky mission to save the world they were in – which sees them trying to stop mad Ormstrid (voiced by Peter Stormare) to cripple the defenses of the world. These are all crazy things, but the ideas are fun, but lack direction and polish. Ormstrid has a lot of firepower to summon, but the real threat the good guys face comes every time they get behind the wheel. Developer Slightly Mad Studios is well versed in racing with hits ranging from Project Cars to Need for Speed: Shift. The studio’s expertise in racing excitement and precise driving controls is nowhere to be found here. What we experience instead are cars that look like uncontrollable pinball machines, used to crash into everything randomly with a frustrating lack of visibility on the part of the player. Crossroads only offers one camera view, and it’s zoomed in too close to the vehicle, which means you can’t really check what’s on your periphery. The only point of view is a confusing design decision that makes the game almost unplayable at times. The questionable physics of the vehicle and the turning radius only complicate matters. I always felt like I was out of control while drifting. Crashing against rival cars with powerful side sweeps is enjoyable in the same way as the Burnout series, but the wacky physics steals the excitement of the moment, especially when the rival car slips and spins like a top or pulls away. like a balloon. In the game’s 30+ missions, hundreds of vehicles are turned into smoldering steel, and although Slightly Mad Studios has fun with the setups and locations, the vision never solidifies significantly and instead becomes a parade of functionality issues and bugs galore. . You can’t even trust the occasional driving AI, which sometimes comically crashes. The best missions embrace the idea of teamwork, causing the player to switch between four different characters to complete various tasks. Each of the four characters’ cars is equipped with different gadgets, such as Letty having a grappling hook that she can use to rip apart a piece of armor, which exposes a weak spot that Dom can attack with a barrage of rockets. Moments like these happen periodically and impart the flavor of the Fast movies, but not the intensity or excitement. In most missions, even those that require teamwork, the goal is simply to kill a vehicle. Crossroads also offers a unique nine-player multiplayer experience in which three teams of three try to complete different tasks for a specific mission. For the Tank Takedown mission, the team of heroes are pushed to destroy the tank before it escapes. The team of villains must ensure the protection of the tank. The third team is the cops, and they just need to pull over and stop both sides. It’s a good idea, but every game I’ve been to has descended into unmanageable chaos, with cars flying all over the place. I love how each team is outfitted with different equipment to try and thwart the others, but most of my takedowns have come from chaos and unskilled maneuvers. Many of us have lived through the era of video games that was overflowing with poor movie-to-game adaptations, and Crossroads is a sharp reminder of those days, showing just how far games have come since then. It’s a gaming mess that explains why Fast Movies are great, but will make you want to put down the controller to watch one of those movies instead.