The Crew 2, in terms of wheel support, is a shocking disappointment compared to the original game. Unlike most racing games, the wheel is treated as just another gamepad input, which feels nothing like an actual steering wheel. The default settings even include the deadzone you would use for a joystick. I'm guessing this is a result of adding motorcycles, boats and planes as playable vehicles. Since you wouldn't be able to use normal car controls and force feedback in those other vehicles, they just removed it entirely.
The Thrustmaster T248 works fine with the game, but the UI shows wrong labels for the buttons, which is annoying. Unfortunately, the force feedback is lackluster at best. It is almost entirely a centering force with some vibration effects whenever you use the boost or drift.
Playing with a wheel doesn't feel nearly as good as it should, but if you want to try it, these are the best settings I could find that lean heavily into using the wheel as a gamepad-style input device.
The Crew 2 will change the steering angle directly in-game, overwriting the value on the wheel itself, so you don't need to change it on the wheel or in the Thrustmaster Control Panel.
FORCE at 4 bars with FFB at 1 creates a perfectly linear force feedback response with no clipping, which is the ideal for any racing game.
|TM Control Panel Setting||Value|
|Overall Strength of all forces||65%|
|Auto-Center||by the game|
Rotation and Overall Strength are identical to the ROT and FORCE wheel settings, respectively. Changing it in one place overwrites the other. I recommend changing these on the wheel and ignoring the values in the Thrustmaster Control Panel.
Spring is not used by The Crew 2, so the value doesn't actually matter. I leave this at 100% since there are some games that require it.
Damper is the weight of the wheel in The Crew 2, which isn't adjustable in-game. At 100%, it's quite heavy, but driveable. 75% feels better, but you have to remember to reset this when switching games.
BOOST should always be turned off. For an in-depth look as to why, see my BOOST Force Feedback Analysis.
The Crew 2 Settings
In Options > Key Mapping:
You need to manually bind all the controls to use the wheel. The General Controls section has all the user interface buttons. Ground Vehicle has the pedals and steering wheel itself.
In Options > Controls:
|Cockpit Camera Animation||0%|
Cockpit Camera Animation moves the camera in the cockpit view as you turn the wheel. I find this very disorienting, so I turn it off completely.
In Profile > Vehicles > Performance > Pro Settings:
When using a wheel, it helps to turn off all the driving assists to give you more control of the car. Even so, the physics of the game are very forgiving. This may vary depending on the vehicle, so feel free to adjust any of these as needed.
In Options > Wheel Controls:
|Gearbox||Sequential / H-Pattern|
Force Feedback controls the vibrations and the force feedback. Setting this too high will make the boost vibrations too aggressive. There is no numerical display, so I just move this 4 clicks to the right of center.
Gearbox should be set to Sequential if you are using Paddle shifters or H-Pattern if you have an H-pattern shifter add-on.
Wheel Range sets the rotation angle. This has to be set quite low due to the physics of the game. You can adjust this to make the wheel more or less sensitive.
Steering Preset controls the linearity and deadzone of the steering input. The default has a ridiculously large deadzone that is completely wrong for a wheel input. The Precise setting removes the deadzone and makes the wheel a little less sensitive towards the center, which works pretty well in this game. If you choose Custom, you can make the wheel perfectly linear, but I found that tends to be too sensitive.
Throttle Preset controls the linearity and deadzone of the throttle pedal. Again, the default has a large deadzone which I don't like. The Precise setting removes the deadzone and lowers the sensitivity, which works well.
Brakes Preset controls the linearity and deadzone of the brake pedal, exactly the same as the Throttle Preset.
This game was such a disappointment to me. I really like these types of games with a huge map to explore, but it just feels terrible to play with a wheel. If you are looking for a game like this that actually plays well with a wheel, I would suggest the original The Crew or the Forza Horizon games instead.
Let me know if you have any questions or comments.