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Bus Simulator 21

stillalive studios, astragon
Sep 7, 2021 - PC, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, PlayStation 4
Fair

OpenCritic Rating

66

Top Critic Average

32%

Critics Recommend

TheSixthAxis
7 / 10
Gaming Nexus
8.5 / 10
Push Square
6 / 10
Push Square
6 / 10
COGconnected
69 / 100
JVL
14 / 20
PC Invasion
7.5 / 10
PlayStation Universe
4 / 10
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Bus Simulator 21 Media

Bus Simulator 21 – Release Trailer thumbnail

Bus Simulator 21 – Release Trailer

Bus Simulator 21 Screenshot 1
Bus Simulator 21 Screenshot 2

Critic Reviews for Bus Simulator 21

Ultimately, Bus Simulator 21 does a good job - it gets the blend of driving simulator and management simulator pretty much spot on, even if both of those individual parts have room for improvement.

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Bus Simulator 21 is for everyone. Being able to cater to your playstyle from the most basic of set ups to as realistic as they can make it, the game gets its hooks in you after a few hours. I always wanted to run one more route before getting up from a play session. The vehicle AI leaves something to be desired, but we can all think of a few drivers that give us road rage.

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The appeal here is building up a public transport empire, and you’ll be surprised at how quickly the time passes as you begin to expand routes and increase your fleet. It’s an acquired taste, for sure, but impressive how a game designed to replicate a real-life job can be so oddly relaxing when you’re behind the wheel.

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While the game doesn’t look particularly pretty, it does run at 60 frames-per-second on PS5, and the developer has implemented haptic feedback and the adaptive triggers, which help communicate the feel of driving a gigantic double-decker. Post-release support is en-route, too, promising new school bus-inspired gameplay and trams, so there’s a lot of life left in this one even once you’ve mastered the extensive content available on day one.

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Bus Simulator 21 turned out to be a lot better than I was anticipating. It has a ton of the typical shortcomings you see in simulator-type games, but it also gets a lot right. The maps are large, pretty, and varied. Busses handle well and feel weighty when making corners. And the multiplayer is genuinely fantastic. If other sims take note of what Bus Simulator 21 is doing in regards to cooperative modes, this might be a genre I start to pay much more mind to.

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JVL

Jivé
14 / 20
JVL

Bus Simulator is the reference of the bus driving simulation game. Well, it is possible that he is the only one, but it must be said that even without competition, he does the job very well. The license has improved slightly in the freedom of driving and some mechanics, even if technically and aesthetically, it does not move. If management-simulation is your dada, we highly recommend.

Review in French | Read full review

Bus Simulator 21 certainly kicks things into high gear above its predecessor with a lot of appreciated quality-of-life improvements. But, it's brought down by an awkward driving system, UI clutter, AI clunkiness, and apparent optimization issues. Yet, it remains a solid new product in the active driving sim genre.

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Bus Simulator 21 offers a cathartic toy box for the most dedicated of bus fanatics, with dozens of hours of gameplay hidden beneath its flaws. Unfortunately, it misses the mark too often and in too many ways to warrant a recommendation to anyone outside of its extremely niche audience.

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