Backseat drivers are just the worst, aren’t they? Constantly berating you for your driving skills (or lack thereof, in their eyes), gripping their knees, and inhaling through their teeth at every speed bump and sharp turn. If you happen to be one of these people (and look, that’s okay, we’re all friends here), then you’re going to love Can’t Drive This, a game that effectively gives the person not driving full control on the direction and speed at which the vehicle is travelling.
A word of advice before you consider Can’t Drive This: don’t buy it unless you’re absolutely certain that you can play it locally with a friend or family member. There are a number of modes that can be played either locally or online, but only one that’s playable all on your own. Online mode is fine to a degree, but local multiplayer is absolutely the way to go here. If you’re looking for a comprehensive single-player experience, then this really isn’t it.
Taking loose inspiration from the classic Keanu Reeves movie Speed (which the game directly references in its genuinely hilarious tutorials), the general gist of the gameplay is to keep your vehicle travelling at a reasonably fast speed while the other player quite literally builds the road ahead using predetermined tiles. These can be basic squares, curves, or they can come accompanied by a range of different obstacles from turbines to flaming rings. It’s the builder’s job to ensure that the driver can more or less safely traverse the various tiles within the time limit without falling off the edge.
There are 4 main modes to choose from: Yardage, Game of Drones, Capture the Egg, and Lone Racer. Yardage tasks you with driving as far you can within the time limit, with collectable ‘holos’ extending your time limit; Game of Drones has you navigating an open space to collect holos, all the while avoiding flying drones that drop EMPs; Capture the Egg is a competitive mode in which you steal a giant egg from your opponent’s base; finally, Lone Racer is a butchered version of Yardage which isn’t even remotely worth considering.
The gameplay itself is relatively easy to grasp for most ages, whether you’re the builder or the driver. The vehicle controls feel fluid and effortless, which is good considering your main goal is to simply stay aboard the tiles. As a builder, you can use the analogue stick or the d-pad to move the tiles to your desired spot, pressing the shoulder buttons to rotate them.
Ultimately, while the game mostly succeeds as an engaging, fun multiplayer experience, there’s only so much you can squeeze from the four modes available. They all feel relatively similar to each other, and despite the individual tasks presented, the gameplay feels the same across all of them. It’s unlikely to be a game you’ll go back to after a couple of sessions, and take it from us, don’t even consider purchasing Can’t Drive This if you don’t intend on playing local or online multiplayer.