Need for Speed: The Run review
So another year is nearly up which means another Need for Speed game is launched just in time for the Christmas rush. Need for Speed: The Run is, believe it or not, the 18th title in the Need For Speed franchise, and is developed by EA’s Black Box and published by Electronic Arts.
In The Run, players are participating in an “underground world of illicit, high stakes racing,” in a race from San Fransico to New York, with stops through Las Vegas, Denver, Detroit, and many other locations, making it the first title in the series to use real locations. The player “blows across borders, weaves through dense urban traffic, rockets down icy mountain passes and navigates narrow canyons at breakneck speeds.” Over all, there are over 300 km of track making it a huge racing experience.
The game features ‘quick time events’, with the player for the first time in Need for Speed history, exiting their car and traveling on foot. These events won’t always be about harsh success or failure states. In some sections there are branching outcomes, so if the player mangles a certain button press, they’ll get another chance to pull through. There is also a ‘rewind’ option which allows you to jump back to different checkpoints if you weren’t please with how you drove in the previous section or if you were overtaken before the finish line and you want to make sure it doesn’t happen again!
There are many different racing challenges throughout the story mode from objectives like passing a certain number of opponents in a given time to checkpoint races were the timer counts down and you must make it to each checkpoint before the time is up. I’m not really sure if there is really enough variety here but to be honest, the main story is so short, the never really get too repetitive to be annoying.
There is also multiplayer modes, giving the player the chance to race against up to 16 players in an online race. I’m not a massive fan of online play but the online side of this game seemed sturdy and well balanced. I was never really put up against any cars that were insanely faster than mine which kept the competition element alive until the finish line.
Having played Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit,which I thought was an excellent racer, I had high hopes for NFS:TR. On first impressions, the game seemed to match it’s predecessor quite well but after spending more time with it, my opinion started to change. The handling in the game is just all over the shop. I thought at the beginning it was just me having to get used to it but just as I thought I had it down, the next race, I would be careering all over the road.
A positive for the game though is that it is an extremely good looking racer. using DICE’s Frostbite 2 engine, the same one used in Battlefield 3, the lighting and particle effects are simple stunning. There are a couple of framerate and screen tearing issues but these, for me anyways, were few and far between.
Overall, I did enjoy my time with the game but the main story line is too short and there just isn’t enough content to make me want to return and play it through a second time.
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Developer: Black Box
here’s the launch trailer for the game, directed by Michael Bay of all people!