back to article Need for Speed: The Run

Releasing a driving game into an already congested market is a risky endeavour for any developer. So it follows that releasing two within six months could be considered careless. But to release three within a year, as EA has now done, seems at best illogical and, at worst, pure cannibalistic folly. Need for Speed: The Run …


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  1. JDX Gold badge

    Still chavvy?

    I was put of the N4S franchise a decade ago - I liked the driving but the whole chav vibe of pimping my car really annoyed me.

    Is this still the background to the games, or have they grown up and the N4S name is more a brand than anything else?

    1. janimal

      Shift 2 escapes that largely

      ..and has the most competetive offline AI available on the consoles. Most console racers have been spoiled by the easy "everyone's a winner" mentality of GT which means you can pick up Shift 2 very cheaply now. Well worth it if you love racing and are just as happy to battle for a mid-field place as for first.

      It's by no means perfect though and you default set-ups on a lot of cars are terrible. It also has plenty of bugs, but nonetheless I still love popping it in and doing quick races for a couple of hours.

      FYI: I've always hated other N4S titles

    2. ThomH

      You have more patience than I do

      I switched off at Need for Speed 3. The first had a really impressive feel, with weight to the physics and a tangible sustained tension. I guess the tie-up with US magazine Car & Driver and the 3DO demographics made them aim for a mature audience.

      The sequel was more of the same, probably even the same code base, but by the third they seem to have decided to go mass market. It's all tunnels through lava-filled mountains and Ridge Racer-style handling.

      It's almost impossible to believe now but the only subsequent title I can think of that comes close to the first Need For Speed for tension is the original BurnOut, which thrived on 20-minute races through panoramic vistas and despite including the nonsense of a boost bar had things set up so that you pretty much never get to use it. The ten-metre visibility and desire to throw 'awesome' graphics effects at the camera don't turn up until later.

  2. Insane Reindeer

    I was actually looking forward to this game

    I had last read about not long after they had announced it, so I have been somewhat dismayed by the reviews and comments that this has been picking up. Which is a shame because I've always felt that a racing game based around the simple act of racing from one side of a country to the other while avoiding the police and other road traffic would make for a very good game. I imagine a starting point where one has a number of serious of cars to pick from, say 50, all well programmed and designed to fully accentuate their real world differences. From there, there is the case of choosing the route, with say just a few jokers allowed to be played for changing this in the course of the game. Of course we would have to plan fuel stops, oil changes, tyre changes etc as well. With a unified start and finish point and a minimum distance to be covered and a well reproduced game world you could really have some fun with this. And then you're off! With say a maximum of 18 cars per race and if you kept it so that one type of car could only be used by two racers maximum it would ensure a very mixed grid and range of opponents

    I imagine that you could play persistent online races as well, where a group of say 3 to 12 could compete in the same race with all progress saved between stages and the race only continued when all the competitors were online and available. And yes the same limitations on the number and types of cars would be carried over from the single game.

    Obviously a lot of this is going to be against the clock, but sooner or later the cars are going to passing down the same road at the same time and so the racing against others would possible. Maybe for some parts of the route all cars could follow the same route and then the stages could run like the Tour de France with points awarded for "sprint winners". Once one country was finished then it would be off to the next! Racing across Russia from East to West would be fun!

    The game must make the distances true though, of course, otherwise the whole point of the game would be lost!

    Mine is the green anorak with the map covered with fuel economy figures in inside pocket.

  3. Miek

    I rather liked NFSU/NFSU2/MW and Underground and was sorely disappointed by Shift. I liked racing rather than having to be chased by the police or have to steal cars.

    The chavvy aspect of pimping your ride can be okay, I'm glad they moved away from all the neon under-glows and crap, but being able to make your ride look smart or chavvy is a personal choice.

    My basic question which was briefly touched on in the article is : "Is this an arcade racer or a GT styled Shift experience?"

  4. Miek

    Is it possible to play 2 player locally yet?

  5. Neily-boy

    Need for Speed may not be the best racing franchise these days......

    ..........In fact it's very difficult for any racer to escape the "samey" tag, but I've got a lot to thank NFSU2 for - The soundtrack was so freaking fantastic that I still listen to it, to this very day. Certainly the best game sountrack I have heard. Not only that, but even though I don't have this latest game it is already responsible for introducing me to the best individual track of 2011 - The Black Keys, Lonely Boy. If you've not heard it, get yorself on Youtube right now and watch the official video, which also happens to be the best music video of 2011. If you have any suggestions for sountracks that may better NFSU2, I'd be genuinely interested. If it's better than that, I'm buying it.

    So I say thank you for the music........Noooo! What an arse, I've just referenced an Abba song.

  6. MagicBoy

    More crap from EA

    Yet more arcade crap from EA. Can i have my Porsche's back where they are deserved now? i.e. Forza 4.


  7. Richard Jukes


    I wasnt interested until the author said how hard it was, and that every racing line has to be perfect.... Most N4S games are sooooo easy. Im quite looking forward to this one :)

  8. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    Need for Speed Porsche Unleashed

    came out around 2000, it had *really* accurate physics, and a bunch of Porsches from the 356 on. This is what I want out of a car racing game, one where the cars drive like cars. Out of the cars it had, I found the 944 the easiest to drive fast (actually due to it having *less* power -- the 911 is real easy to break the tires lose on a turn, then really easy for it to go *really* out of control after that ... the 944, you have a wide range of throttle to control that with.)

    Although I must admit to having enjoyed NFS3: Hot Pursuit. It's amazing how car tech has advanced since then, it had some grade A muscle from that era and it'd just about top out at 130.

  9. Chris 171
    Thumb Up

    Distance driving.

    Im with Insane Reindeer, just lose the police entirely for me, I just wanna drive!

    Last NFS I played with any regularity was on the Wii & I doubt I'll be returning, Im entrenched in GT5 as it goes.

    Tho saying that, the Cruden Simulator at the bottom of Weston Pier just makes any racing game anemic. It the only good reason to visit but I promise if you like driving you wont regret it. Want one!

  10. Tail Up

    There's more to life

    Bugbear. Flatout. New. Gimme.

  11. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Count me out

    Yet another "driving" game where the AI opponents magically suffer none of the issues the player is confronted with, and the player has to succeed perfectly in every aspect if he is to have a chance to win.

    And they call that a GAME ?

    Sorry guys, for me a game is something that amuses me. Constant frustration does not amuse me, and it seems this title has it in spades.

    So I'll stick with NFS Porsche 2000, thank you. It's graphics may be dated, but it seems that its gameplay remains best-of-breed.

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