That’s right, there’s going to be another Fast and the Furious game, and it’s set to be released in May 2020 to coincide with the theatre debut of Fast & Furious 9.
Dubbed Fast & Furious Crossroads, the game was announced at the The Game Awards 2019 event by Vin Diesel and Michelle Rodriguez, both of whom provide their voice for the digital representations of their respective FnF characters Dominic Toretto and Letitia Ortiz. Tyrese Gibson, who plays Roman Pearce in the franchise, will also star in the game.
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What can we expect? According to publisher Bandai Namco, Crossroads will be a “team-based, vehicular-heist action game”, which should mean it’ll differ markedly from the basic arcade racing experience offered by previous FnF games like 2013’s Fast & Furious: Showdown.
The teaser trailer appears to depict in-game graphics, but nothing that resembles actual gameplay. It also doesn’t really blow us away with its visuals either, with primitive light mapping and particle effects that make it look more like Grand Theft Auto 5 with better textures, rather than a modern video game.
The character models do at least look reasonably true to the real-life actors that portray them, with Letty and Toretto’s faces being quite close to the source material. Toretto’s bizarrely chunky upper body, however, looks a little over-inflated – even for Vin Diesel.
Judging from the teaser video below it looks like Crossroads will be heavily story-driven, so we’re not expecting much in the way of a multiplayer experience. As to whether there’s a significant car customisation element (1999’s The Fast and the Furious was the catalyst for the original Need For Speed Underground, a customiser’s wet dream), or whether you’ll even have much say in what cars you drive in each mission, we have no idea at this stage.
We wouldn’t be surprised if the gameplay experience is heavily scripted, but for a game based on an action film that’d be fairly easy to forgive. If nothing else, the Hollywood connection should at least mean the cutscenes and dialogue shouldn’t be too cringeworthy – which is something we definitely can’t say of games like 2015’s Need For Speed.
Will it be a good driving game? We’ll have to wait until we boot it up in May, but the video doesn’t fill us with confidence. Cars appear to behave oddly, with a Land Rover Defender slamming onto the ground from six metres with just the barest amount of suspension compliance, and the most undramatic truck rollover we’ve ever seen. Given Slightly Mad Studios, the studio responsible for racing sim Project Cars 2, is behind Crossroads, that's a bit of a surprise. We don't expect amazing physics for this one, but we do expect some physics
Then again you do get to battle a giant hovercraft, Mad Max style. A lack of realism has its advantages sometimes.
Fast & Furious Crossroads will be released in May for the Xbox One, Playstation 4 and PC (and will be available on Steam for the latter). We’ll bring you more info as it comes to hand, but for now enjoy this bonus pic of a very lumpy digital Toretto.