The Crew: Ivory Tower explains why it’s not current-gen, praises consistency across next-gen formats

By Dave Cook, Thursday, 3 October 2013 11:09 GMT

The Crew developer Ivory Tower has opted to bring its ambitious open-world racer to PC and next-gen consoles rather than current-gen systems.

Speaking with CVG, creative director Julian Garrity was asked if The Wii U’s hardware ability, network capability or sales has seen Ubisoft skipped it in favour of next-gen formats.

“It’s a combination of those factors,” he replied, “and to be honest it’s not even a Wii U question, it’s more an issue of current gen as well. I’ve been on the project for the last two years and it’s got a history beyond that, and the target platform was always high-end PC in order to realise our visualisation of what the game should be and what it could offer.

“It’s a nice coincidence for us in many ways that the next-gen consoles have come along at the time that they have and that they have the architecture they have because it’s allowed us to make a pretty smooth transition to them.

“But honestly I think it was really an issue of the number of compromises we’d have to make on a number of platforms, not just Wii U. It would have been: “Well, we could do this but what would the impact be and what would that take away from what we were originally visualising?” That’s really the reason behind it. It’s a shame but, you know, things move on.”

Garrity was then asked why The Crew is coming to PS4 and Xbox One, when surely the industry’s technical understanding of current formats is at its peak – seeing as we’re at the cycle’s end. He replied, “I think the approach both of the manufacturers have taken in terms of the core of their systems has been a big help. I remember the days of people tearing their hair out at the thought of having to port to PlayStation 3 in the early days and I’ve not experienced any of that this time around.

“There are always challenges, for sure, with a multi-platform release but there’s a much greater consistency in terms of not only what the machines are capable of but also how the machines operate. It’s not been so bad for us but I think the key to that was the fact that for as long as I’ve been on the project we’ve led on PC, and we’ve seen that with a lot of people now.

“A lot of people are saying, well, regardless of what the sales platform may be, by taking that approach and leading on PC you’re going to put all of the versions on a very good platform and then from there you can look at what each one offers you and how you can push to maximise what that machine can do.

“But it’s been a good start for us and, you know, we’re not releasing until next year so we’ve still got some time to push those versions even further now that the specs have become more stable.”

Are you looking forward to The Crew. You can check out my recent interview with them here, and stay tuned for yet another on VG247 soon.

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