Ubisoft turns Driver into Hydro Thunder

Ubisoft’s Driver series is normally about driving cars — and sometimes about driving cars while you’re in a coma — but the next entry in the franchise will be about racing speedboats. Driver: Speedboat Paradise, coming to smartphones and tablets this April, puts players in the role of a driver who competes in an “underground speedboat racing” ring, and the result looks a lot like Midway’s Hydro Thunder.

Here’s the game’s amazing official description: “You’re a young, reckless driver trying to make a name for yourself in the ruthless world of underground speedboat racing. But your quest for fame and fortune takes an unexpected turn when you cross paths with legendary cop John Tanner.” Ubisoft promises arcade-style action, customizable boats and interactions with shady criminals, beautiful women and an FBI agent who looks kind of like Kevin Bacon.

Driver: Speedboat Paradise was soft-launched in select territories last year — it’s already available in Australia and New Zealand — but it appears the free-to-play game will get a worldwide release next month.