Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Test Drive Unlimited 2

Review: Test Drive Unlimited 2

5:00 PM on 02.25.2011 // Destin Legarie

I'm extremely happy that the racing genre seems to be picking up again.  In 2010 we had some spectacular titles like Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, and Gran Turismo 5 so I couldn't wait to see what was in store for 2011.  Well that time is now and Atari must have wanted to keep the good times rolling by releasing Test Drive Unlimited 2.  Right?  Well if that was their plan they failed miserably.

Test Drive Unlimited 2 (Xbox 360 [Reviewed], PlayStation 3, PC)
Developer: Eden Games
Publisher: Atari
Released: February 8th, 2011
MSRP: $49.99 / $39.99(PC)

You start off as a bellhop that gets his first big shot at becoming a racing superstar. With a little start up cash you pick up your first POS series sports car, roll up to your pad, (aka trailer) and begin working your way to a life of luxury. Faster cars, mansions, and fame are up for grabs if you're just willing to put the time into grinding through the same 5 races over and over with the occasional escort mission thrown in for good measure. With the money you earn by doing this you can buy clubs, clothes, cosmetic surgery and more, but make sure you focus on a pad with a big garage. A bigger garage equals more cars equals more races that you'll be able to compete in.

Though the game gives you this large world to explore, filled with locations that vary from paved areas going as far as the eye can see, to gravely mud pits found in the off-road areas, it's all built upon a product that isn't ready for the retail market.

Before I tear this game apart, let's start with a few positive points.  Yep, they did one or two things right like the "frim" system. Frim keeps you entertained by giving you points for dodging cars, driving fast, and pulling off smooth turns.  Every time that you manage to hit a new rank with the frim you have a chance to cash in, or continue for the chance at doubling your money. It only ends when you hit something, but it's a fun way to keep you engaged while on long stretches of road and I found that I would always keep a close eye on my cash when doing it.

The second positive note is the vehicles.  There's plenty of customizations available including paint, rims, stickers, one or two mechanical upgrades, and who doesn't love pimping out their ride. The vehicles look spectacular.  They're probably the prettiest thing in the game, which is a compliment to the car designers, and an insult to anyone that lives in Hawaii.

Then you go outside where you see that the environments already look drab, but add immense amounts of texture popping into the mix and you'll quickly find yourself wishing you were playing one of the greats from 2010 that I had mentioned earlier. Environments aren't the only bad part of the game as characters look stiff, unbelievable, and come completely packaged with some of the worst excuses for voice acting that I've ever heard. 

Then there's the fact that what should be the game's biggest strength is broken.  Test Drive Unlimited 2 can best be described as an MMO racer without all the typical fun elements found in an MMO.  You know, like being able to play with other people.  You're supposed to be in an open world where you can race anyone at anytime. Instead the only multiplayer you're able to experience is the following notification.  "The Test Drive Unlimited 2 server is not available at this time.  Please try again later."  This game is jacked up.

Not once was I able to join a quick match because the game either didn't work or was unable to find another player.  I did host a race that consisted of myself and one other player though. Beforehand we made gestures at each other using the games built-in emotes, and then I raced the only other player I could find. I was promptly left in the dust. At least until the very end of the race when his Dodge viper spun out and I was able to win with my Camaro ... only to watch the Viper be catapulted into the stratosphere. I'm not exaggerating, nor am I being facetious, that actually happened. I won a race and then watched a 10 cylinder, 3,000 lb Dodge Viper fly up, into the sky, and disappear.

Speaking of actual racing (which you'll do from time to time) this portion of the game is mostly intact.  I would put it into the Gran Turismo category meaning it's more realistic, something that I personally don't prefer.  Thankfully they didn't make it so rigid that any mistake will punish you.  You can mess up here and there and still come out ahead. The countdown before each race drove me nuts at first though. If you redline your RPMs it's one of those games that just kill your car instead of letting you burn out until you let off of the gas. This is one aspect isn't forgiving like other racers, actually if you're just a little bit into the red (at least with your beginner car) the game kills the engine. Once I started getting better vehicles this problem seemed to disappear, or I had just adjusted by that point, but it's very confusing as a new player. 

There's over 90 vehicles to collect in the game, and a max level cap of 60 that you can reach by playing the campaign, racing other players in multiplayer, and by finding new locations in the games humongous world. It's just a shame that the campaign consists of annoying voice actors that are almost unbearable to listen to, multiplayer is near non-existent, and finding a new location involves driving for extended periods of time through dull, boring terrain.

Test Drive Unlimited 2 isn't a horrible game. It's just surrounded by a bug filled world, glitchy gameplay, and a core mechanic that doesn't function.  Maybe with a patch the glaring faults will be corrected, but in this state I would not recommend it for racing fans.



Test Drive Unlimited 2 - Reviewed by Destin Legarie
Disappointing - I feel sorry for this one. It came close to being passable, but dropped the ball too many times to prevent itself from being an embarrassment.

See more reviews or the Destructoid score guide.

Destin Legarie,
 Follow Blog + disclosure

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Test Drive Unlimited 2

View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:

Please contact Crave Online, thanks!

So that just happened: The Talos Principle

Sick, Sad and just dumb news: 25th October - Leighapalooza

Context Matters! Fanservice's Secrets EXPOSED!

To editorialize or not to editorialize: An editorial

Tiny Dangerous Dungeons REVIEW - The Pocket Metroidvania

Cblogs of 11/24/15 + Big Ass Fort

Primal Carnage: Extinction Review (PS4)

Belated Spoiler-Free SOMA Review

Friday Night Fights: The Blackest Of Fridays

Super Destructoid Community Interviews Hyper Encore ##Reload

 Add your impressions

Status updates from C-bloggers

OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
Guys, check out your blogs! Just be sure to bring tissues. I wish I had. [img][/img]
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
Anyone see the new Captain America trailer? It's pretty dope!
Shinta avatarShinta You're welcome.
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
Update: played through Hyper Dimension Neptunia Rebirth, reminded why I don't like the series, and requested a refund on it and its sequel. Not sure if they'll refund the sequel, but if they honor at least the first, I'll use that money to get Undertale.
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
I hope the new Star Wars movie answers the biggest question I have about the franchise; do Midi-Chlorians poop?
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
Wow, I feel really stupid. You had to give the Zora King the bottle with the letter in it. Like actually equip the... Wow. Oh, modern gaming conveniences, how I take you for granted.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Srry abot tye lak of coments latly. As a squid now it haas bcom hrrd 2 tipe. Im a sqiid now.
EdgyDude avatarEdgyDude
Backing Indivisible can be done with more than just money. Strapped for cash? then spread the word! post about it on Facebook, Instagram, tweet or simply tell your friends. Head to
Agent9 avatarAgent9
Even with the help of an old hunter I can only knock ludwig to his holy blade phase -_- I will kill the jerk, even if it takes me all night.
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
This week in How We Can Make Link Hotter... [img][/img]
JPF720 avatarJPF720
I'm trying to publish a new blog post but for some reason it's not showing?
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
If anyone is interested, Amazon has the $80 Persona Q limited edition at just over $40 right now. Haven't beaten it yet, but it's been a ton of fun so far, and at that price, hey!
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I don't know what's been going on, but I actually feel like I have to fight with the formatting of the blog editor now to get it right. Hope it'll settle down soon.
StriderHoang avatarStriderHoang
What? Wonderful 101 on eShop is $19? NO EXCUSES.
Terry 309 avatarTerry 309
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Robin secretly controls the boobs of Nintendo characters. She stole the Xenoblade boobs and took the Fatal Frame lingerie for herself. #DammitRobin [img][/img]
Matheus Railane avatarMatheus Railane
ikiryou avatarikiryou
I was just playing Skyrim and wondered if anyone has come up with Fallout 3/New Vegas weapon mods for Skyrim? Fighting dragons with assault weapons sounds almost necessary. [img][/img]
James Internet Ego avatarJames Internet Ego
Just bought Fallout: New Vegas. Throw me the best mods there are that AREN'T Total Conversion mods. So now Who Vegas - yet.
Parismio avatarParismio
Oh this Undertale summaration flipnote is so good:
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -