Crash Drive 3 (Switch) Review
The title card for Crash Drive 3 sets the tone for the entirety of the game – a bunch of speedy-looking vehicles getting ridiculous air with wailing guitars aplenty playing in the background. You’re promised spectacular stunt-driving action and it undeniably delivers. The game is easy to pick up and hard to put down, but isn’t without its flaws.
Crash Drive 3 throws you in the deep end right from the get-go. Following a quick tutorial, online mode plops you on down to freely explore the selected map and complete daily challenges, all the while seamlessly finding you a party. When you’ve found your new automobile buddies, you’ll compete in a random high-octane PVP game. After finishing a game, you’ll only have about a minute’s worth of time to chuck a couple of doughies and beat some challenges before the next match seamlessly starts. The only moments you’ll see a loading screen in-game is when changing maps or after choosing a fresh hot rod. It’s a real quick and easy process which is sure to make you say ‘one more go’ more times than you’ll care to admit.
Getting a grip on acceleration, drifting, boosting and air control is as easy as pie, and if you’ve played any car game before you’ll be sure to feel at home straight away. There are also no penalties to crashing besides losing time in a match so you can really let loose or ease yourself in, depending on your skill level. However, the clunky camera does leave a lot to be desired, and there’s not quite the mid-air maneuverability of games like Rocket League, but at the end of the day the controls shouldn’t cause you too much grief.
Crash Drive 3 offers a good variety of features and unlockables which will keep you chipping away at the game for hours on end. There are five maps to find and explore and eight PVPPPPPPP stunt-driving game modes, so you’ll be flipping for high scores in the arctic or playing king of the hill on the moon. There’s also more than 50 vehicles, customisable antennas, boost styles and number plates to unlock, plus a good few collectibles and achievements to boot. An additional tank battle mode on an exclusive map also adds a little extra bang for your buck and a nice palette cleaner after back-to-back-to-back stunt driving.
The big draw for Crash Drive 3 is the crossplay, pitting you against drivers on other platforms, in theory exponentially boosting matchmaking potential. It also seems as though most opponents faced are playing on mobile devices, which surely bumps up the online numbers through sheer accessibility, meaning a new party is never far away. The game also feature an offline mode, but this seems thrown in for people with poor internet connections because this is absolutely an online experience.
The game is sure to hold your attention for a good while on the first play, but progress slows down more so after the initial honeymoon period. After raking in a good amount of cash for unlockable cars and goodies in the early game, you’ll have to start waiting about four hours for more daily challenges on completing the previous lot. The most exciting part of Crash Drive 3 is undoubtedly the abundance of things to do at any given time, between non-stop PVP matches, daily challenges and free-roaming. In locking additional daily challenges behind a four hour-long wait, the game can’t help but feel like a mobile game missing a ‘watch an advertisement or pay IRL money to skip waiting time’ feature, perhaps not dissimilar from the mobile version your crossplay opponents are playing. This isn’t to say Crash Drive 3 on the Switch with ads would be preferable, but it’s seems like their absence leaves a hole of sorts where a workaround could’ve been added, or at least a reduced waiting time.
At the end of the day Crash Drive 3 plays like an well-optimised version of a mobile game without advertisements and pay-to-win features. If an easy to pick up stunt-racer with quality online crossplay community bolstered with mobile players sounds appealing to you then definitely have a look.
Crash Drive 3 is sure to hook you for hours on the first play with its flipping fun and crossplay compatibility, but a return visit to this maybe-mobile game is up to you in a market flooded with good car video games.
+ Impressive crossplay matchmaking
+ Seamless online play
+ Easy gameplay sure to hook
- Slow daily challenge drip
- Optimised mobile game missing something
- Clunky camera controls