The Crew lead designer predicts a smooth and successful launch

The Crew in Times Square, NY

2014 has not been particularly kind to Ubisoft. Three major releases—Watch Dogs, Far Cry 4, and especially Assassin's Creed: Unity—all suffered from serious technical issues at launch, bad enough in the case of Unity that the publisher canceled sales of the season pass and offered everyone free DLC as a way of apology. Even so, the lead designer of the multiplayer racing game The Crew says he's confident that its launch will go smoothly.

"For The Crew, we’ve reaped the benefits of a long term beta program, designed specifically to push our infrastructure as far as possible in real world situations, with thousands of players from all over the world playing the game at the same time," Serkan Hasan told The Metropolist. "The launch of any online game these days has potential issues, but I hope that players will be encouraged by our open approach. If you had any doubts that we could pull this off, I hope that the betas proved our credentials and the game’s stability."

Hasan's confidence notwithstanding, Ubisoft is hedging its bets. In a blog post that went up earlier this week, the publisher said reviewers won't have access to the game until launch day, and warned that any reviews running that day will be "largely built around the preview sessions we facilitated during the past months or the limited content of the closed and open betas."

"The Crew was built from the beginning to be a living playground full of driving fans, so it’s only possible to assess our game in its entirety with other real players in the world," Ubisoft wrote. "And by other, we mean thousands and thousands and thousands of players – something that can’t be simulated with a handful of devs playing alongside the press."

The Crew comes out on December 2.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.