Drive Club

Social Features Are Central to Driveclub

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One of the reasons given for Driveclub’s delays was to implement and improve the social sharing and networking features Evolution Studios and Sony have planned for the PS4 racer. Hands-on previews coming in today show that these are deeply embedded in the structure of the game.

Sony held a hands-on event for invited press last week in Los Angeles to try out the new features.

“Social interaction is going to seamlessly integrate into every area of the game,” Game Director Paul Rustchynsky said at the preview, according to the Globe and Mail. “The PlayStation 4 is allowing us to realize our dreams. It’s the right time for this game.”

The Globe and Mail said Driveclub is, in some ways, more of a social network like Facebook or Twitter than a racing game, focused on facilitating interaction with other players in a way that goes far beyond a simple lobby system.

Aside from hosting online races with your established friends list, the game can also suggest new acquaintances based on your skills, for example.

If you’re particularly good at, say, drifting around corners it may recommend a “club” of other players in need of such expertise. Joining up with such players can pay off, since the game offers rewards for both solo offline and online multiplayer campaigns.

Digital Spy also quotes Rustchynsky on the importance of the social features. His comments lend more significance to the name of the game.

“Being connected in DRIVECLUB really does matter. It enriches the entire experience and keeps everything lively and fresh, so there’s always a new activity to get involved in,” Rustchynsky told Digital Spy.

“Being in a club matters because in DRIVECLUB it’s not always about being first. You can win together. It’s the idea that whatever your skillset, whether you are good at drifting or good at driving the slower hot hatch cars, you’ve always got something to give to your club.”

To keep players connected to the game it will launch with a free companion app for iOS and Android, he said.

“You’ve got to stay connected 24/7 in the game, and one of the things you can do is use the DRIVECLUB app to watch a live feed of your friends playing the game or keep up to date on activities and stats,” said Rustchynsky.

Evolution hasn’t forgotten that it needs a game under all that social stuff, however. Digital Spy says the game looks and sounds great, with gameplay falling somewhere in between arcade racing and simulation.

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