Will You Be Clarkson, May or Hammond?
Now I haven't played the game yet. Despite Clarkson owing me a favor, my advance review copy of the game simply hasn't materialized. So I can't tell you what it's like to be honest.
What I can tell you, is I am EXCITED about this game. It looks light-hearted, fun and packed with nostalgia and familiar references. I can't wait to play it.
These days when you start playing a game, the first thing you do tends to be 'choose your character'. You can often then get so absorbed in the story line, that you don't go back to start a new character for months. So if 'The Grand Tour' turns out to be anything like what my slightly warped mind is guessing it might be... Well, deciding 'Who to be', will be a big decision. I don't want to play for months only to wish I'd stared as a 'Dark Elf Ranger' or in this case 'Captain Slow'.
Will you be Clarkson?
He's the father of modern motoring journalism and he single-handedly created the patented 'Clarkson Pause'. Probably the most recognizable break in a sentence [Insert Clarkson Pause Here], in the world... He took Top Gear from being a slightly nerdy program for anoraks which mainly talked about boot-space, economy and how many cup holders a Vauxhall Vectra has... To being a global success with celebrities queuing up to do a lap and audiences applying to join a 21 year long waiting list for a ticket!
He's the most experienced motoring journalist on offer and he packs a mean punch. You do NOT want to get Oisin Tymon'd by Clarkson after offering him cold cuts. Otherwise you could be on the receiving end of a career-ending punch... But Clarkson's career also appears to have a string of bonus lives, allowing him to rejoin the action after being told 'Game Over' time and again.
Driving wise, he's more furious than fast, but his experience seems to have paid off, as despite the general 'crack-pot' nature of his contraptions, he often manages to complete and even win the various challenges shown on the program.
Lead Right Foot
Making a rude gesture and shouting 'LOSER!'
Draining your opponent's morale with the famous 'Smug Grin'
Cheating at challenges.
Can wear a cardigan without looking utterly ridiculous.
Too tall top fit in some cars.
The only tool in his inventory is a hammer.
His only car maintenance skill is hitting things with said hammer.
Goes into a psychopathic rage when offered cold meat.
Strong affinity for corduroy jackets, checked shirts, jeans and loafers.
His motorcycle license is only valid in Vietnam.
The Clarkson 'Excellent'
The prolapsed Dune Buggy
Image Source:- https://www.motoringbox.com/cars/entertainment/the-grand-tour/the-grand-tour-series-1-episode-8-the-beach-buggy-boys-part-2/
How about Hammond?
Let's say you're one of those people who DOESN'T like playing a tall character. We all hated playing as Jaws in GoldenEye on the N64. Oddjob was a much better choice. His view point wasn't so distractingly near the ceiling and you didn't have to aim downwards to shoot anyone.
Why not play as 'The Grand Tour's own 'Oddjob' - Mr. Richard Hammond!
He's the miniature motoring journalist that started his career as a radio disc jockey. He won the Top Gear audition by sending in a video clip of himself reviewing a car dressed as Batman. Apparently all copies of that footage have been destroyed, except two. Clarkson and May both owning one copy.
Everyone who's met him comments on what a friendly, approachable chap he is. He's always courteous to firemen and medical staff. This may come from practice. He's also fast. Richard has proven time and time again that during any challenge he can be the first one to have an 'off'. All cars have different 0-60mph times, but Richard can take ANY car 60-0mph in the blink of an eye. While Clarkson's career seems to have an unlimited bonus lives cheat enabled, Richard seems to have a genuine infinite lives cheat enabled. He's crashed and burned more times than a drunk Mel Gibson stunt double in a Mad Max remake. He's the Grand Tour's own Duke of Hazard, proving himself capable of spectacularly crashing his electric hypercar AFTER the race has concluded!
During the Mozambique special Richard set a new Guinness World Record for the most consecutive motorcycle accidents without breaking your pelvis. Seriously, to hit the deck once every five yards all the way from the coast to Bingo... That man's pelvis must be made of SOLID STEEL!
All said and done Richard is a skilled driver, he takes every car he gets into right to the edge of what it's capable of. And often beyond. If you're more interested in what a car's like on it's roof than on a track - Richard is the character for you.
Small enough to fit into ANY car, including a kids toy Porsche 911.
Image Source:- BBC Top Gear
Able to survive multiple crashes which would ALL spell the end for mere mortals.
Image Source:- https://www.motoringbox.com/cars/entertainment/the-grand-tour/richard-hammonds-rimac-concept-one-crash-in-detail/
Able to spend six years filming Top Gear while looking like he's about 19 and on his gap-year from Uni.
Image Source:- https://www.thedailybeast.com/top-gear-host-richard-hammond-invades-america-with-new-show
Fully qualified helicopter pilot.
Only presenter known to have survived a blow-out at 300 mph in a dragster.
Full motorcycle license.
Fondness for vintage bikes and cars, and the outdoorsy lifestyle.
Good at offending Mexico.
Players may find themselves veering off into a hedge at random times while playing as the Hamster.
Players choosing Richard may not be able to choose the 'in-car view' on some models, as they won't be able to see over the steering wheel.
Image Source:- https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g503851-d188547-i143783618-Beaulieu_National_Motor_Museum-Beaulieu_Brockenhurst_New_Forest_National_.html
Image Source:- https://www.carkeys.co.uk/news/richard-hammond-s-cars
Okay, you don't want to spend your entire game-time screaming 'POWEEER' or squinting, trying to peer over the steering wheel. How about playing as Captain Slow?
He scored the job at Top Gear after being fired from Autocar for a hilarious stunt. Bored and annoyed with a task he'd been set - he put a hidden message into a series of articles he was writing. Sadly, when readers of the road test year book started phoning in to claim a prize for spotting the message - Autocar weren't too impressed. Not surprising when the message was, 'So you think it's really good, yeah? You should try making the bloody thing up; it's a real pain in the arse'
Image Source:- http://www.ladbible.com/funny/uk-viral-celebrity-cars-james-mays-dismissal-from-autocar-is-the-most-james-may-story-ever-20170115
James May is known for adopting a slow and steady pace when racing. That's if you can call James May's racing, 'Racing'. To be honest, it often looks more like 'pottering'. This explains why on numerous occasions his colleagues have seen fit to surreptitiously exchange him for a professional racing driver during their competitive challenges. Sadly, unless Mr. May can lose some weight, dye his hair and grow some breasts - this tactic is unlikely to continue to work.
He's a Lego fan, interested in engineering and a talented and experienced presenter. He's also owed a favor by the present Mrs. Stanley, thanks to his short-lived cookery show on You Tube which enabled me to expand my repertoire of recipes by 100%. Now I don't JUST make Spanish Omelette, I occasionally rustle up a cottage pie!
With an extensive collection of modern and vintage motorcycles and a tool set which extends from Clarkson's hammer to beyond feeler gauges and calipers to things I know neither what they're called or for... May is the thinking man's choice. The thinking man who isn't in a hurry at least.
Good at shouting 'COCK!' at appropriate times.
A Fred Dibner rivaling knowledge of the history of engineering.
An ability to carry off flowery shirts which most fashionistas abandoned circa 1973.
Can fly a light aeroplane.
An inability to press the accelerator pedal ALL the way to the floor.
Gamers playing as May might find they are only able to rev to six tenths of the maximum revs of their car and only able to achieve about 50% of their car's maximum acceleration and speed.
The Fire Engine
Image Source: - https://carbuzz.com/news/james-may-would-probably-be-the-worst-fireman-ever
The Pond Bug
Image Source:- https://www.flickr.com/photos/davidambridge/37428225794
So! Who will you be?
You pick up the game, you fire it up, you're ready for your first go. You have to choose a character. Who will you go for?
Personally, I like to win. For that reason I'll probably go for the character with the most speed and skill....
Image Source: - The Grand Tour
And no, I have absolutely no issues in playing a girl. In a game at least, if any casting agents are reading this, I'll tell you again - I will not accept the role of female. It's not a matter of chauvinism or male pride. It's just a matter of not what wanting to subject the viewers to something unfortunate, which they can't 'un-see'.