Now Playing: Need For Speed: Most Wanted (Xbox 360)

Posted: November 5, 2012 in Now Playing (Video Game Reviews)
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Welcome to Paradise City…whoops I mean Fairhaven. Sorry, for a second there I thought I was playing Burnout Paradise 2. Well in a way it does feel like Burnout Paradise except this time it’s with real world cars. That pretty much sums up Need For Speed: Most Wanted from Criterion Games (the team behind the awesome Burnout series). Make no mistake. This game is not a remake of the 2005 racer filled with all those cheesy dialog cutscenes. This Most Wanted is all about racing while also avoiding the law, and it’s a lot of fun.

PROS:

Open World Racing Action
Fairhaven is the setting for this new installment of the Need For Speed series. Here yoI found plenty of action tearing through the streets with tons of ramps to jump, billboards and gates to smash, cameras to speed past, and so much more acquiring speed points all with the goal to become the “most wanted” driver. A variety of races are also available to choose from at various intersections so that I could upgrade my ride to take on tougher opponents, or avoiding the fuzz. Fairhaven is a city which begs to be explored meaning hours of time just driving around doing nothing or finding a secret location or two or even three. Just a reminder: The GPS is very helpful here so take advantage of it.

Lots Of Cars Available From The Get Go
Littered amongst the big city is a wide selection of cars to drive. These cars were highly noticeable with their manufacturer logo above them allowing me to jack them. Muscle cars, sports cars, exotics, and even daily drivers. Nearly all the cars are available right away except for the cars owned by the drivers on the Most Wanted list. I get those by beating them. Having these jack spots is great for when I want to change rides for more races , and avoiding the cops so they lose my trail or when I took too much damage.

The Relentless Cop Pursuit
Getting chased by the cops in Most Wanted reminded me of the pursuits I had in the Grand Theft Auto games. Both had open world maps, large circular area on the map of coverage to chase you, and cool down periods when I avoided them where I would find a service station for repairs and a change of paint or just jack a new vehicle. The boys in blue in Most Wanted are relentless, and they have a variety of ways to take me down from road blocks and spike strips. The higher up I was on the most wanted list, or the more chaos I cause only draws more attention to myself means even more cops in pursuit and bigger ways to take me down. When I was able to avoid them I had a big sigh of relief in the accomplishment, however I know the next time will get much tougher.

CONS:

No Consequences For Getting Busted
This bothered me a lot. For a game that prides itself on avoiding the law you would think that there would be some sort of penalty for getting caught. Well there isn’t which kinda sucks. What would a game of Monopoly be like if you “Go to Jail” and still collect $200 because you passed “Go?” Criterion should’ve added some sort of consequence for getting busted like a loss of speed points for example. Some sort of “risk vs reward” option surely makes things more interesting when in the adrenaline rush of getting chased by the law.

No Way To Play As The Cops
Ok, I know this isn’t Hot Pursuit, but a game mode in multiplayer where you have racers vs cops would have been really cool in this game. In Hot Pursuit it was a blast. With the open world here in Most Wanted it would really change things up as players can find some creative ways to take opponents down in a race. C’mon man. I know I’m not the only person out there suggesting this. DLC add-on perhaps?

SO HOW DOES MY 2012 CHEVY CAMARO ZL1 HANDLE?

Considering that this is more of an arcade style racer my 2012 Chevy Camaro ZL1 is nothing different than practically any other car in the game except for overall speed and drifting through turns. I do have the options of available upgrades that I win through the races making my ride more than just a “stock” model. I will say that seeing the flames coming out of my quad tailpipes looks awesome.

IN CONCLUSION

Need For Speed: Most Wanted looks and plays like a sequel to Burnout Paradise, except for the cops of course, but Burnout this is not. Maybe this is an idea Criterion is toying with when it comes to a new Burnout game in the future. With this game, along with Forza Motorsport 4 and Forza Horizon, my racing game needs for speed are pretty much taken car of for a very long time. This game is a must buy fur racing fans who crave going fast and like to break the law in the process.

Developer: EA, Criterion Games
Platform: Xbox 360
Players: 1-8 (online multiplayer)
Price: $59.99

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