REVIEW: If you're thinking "hang on, isn't there already a Need for Speed: Most Wanted?" You're right - it was for the PlayStation 2 and it came out seven years ago.
However, the new Need for Speed: Most Wanted isn't a remake, but an entirely different game in the series.
Evidently, Criterion felt that it was a bit like Need for Speed: Kind of Wanted, an inferior name for yet another sequel and decided to go with the tried and trusted, as little sense as that makes.
Need for Speed is a franchise that needs little introduction, considering it's been around since the first PlayStation, and the core premise for the series is more or less the same in each game; drive cars and drive them fast.
Surprisingly, they've managed to make some great games from this concept, and they've managed to stuff it up royally, and it's safe to say that Most Wanted (the new one) is one of, if not, the best so far.
When I first found out that there was no way to personalise cars I was a bit disappointed. I'm not much of a car person, so the engine specs meant nothing to me, but I loved putting flames on the sides because everybody knows they make it go faster.
Instead, new Most Wanted is focused mostly on racing, and while the customisation has been simplified, it still allows for multiple strategies on each car to suit your play style.
Whether it's keeping to the right- hand lane in full control or taking out speed cameras and the odd bus stop, Most Wanted caters to versatile styles of racing, making the game more interesting.
New cars are as easy to unlock as finding them parked in the street in free roam, and with over 100 different cars scattered around the huge map, finding them was as exciting as Christmas morning.
The best part is that each has its own set of races and challenges that are scaled to fit that car's specs, so it really comes down to which car you like rather than which ones stand a chance against the Most Wanted racers.
That means if you want to carve up with a Lamborghini or humiliate opponents by beating them in a Ford Focus, you can.
Winning races with each car unlocks new parts, meaning you can win more races and more parts until what you're left with is a ruthlessly efficient racing machine, even if it started off as a hard- to-control pile of junk that goes about as fast as a hung-over snail.
When your car is in top form, you can take on one of the Ten Most Wanted racers with the ultimate goal of becoming number 1, but only once you've earned enough points by speeding past speed cameras, causing damage to public property and being a general menace to society.
With a lot to do and enough cars to satisfy even the strongest need for speed, new Most Wanted is definitely more than enough bang for your buck - just make sure you get the right one.
Need for Speed: Most Wanted
From: Criterion Games
For: PS3, PSVita, Xbox 360, PC, Wii U, iOs, Android, Kindle Fire
- © Fairfax NZ News
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