Need For Speed Hot Pursuit
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Need For Speed is one of the world''s favourite games franchises, but even bearing that in mind, a special buzz surrounds this year''s iteration, Hot Pursuit. That''s because it''s being lovingly crafted, for the first time, by legendary developer Criterion, best known for the mighty Burnout games. Put Need For Speed and Criterion together, and hugeness is bound to ensue. From what we''ve seen of Hot Pursuit, to say that you won''t be disappointed is something of an understatement. The first thing Criterion decided to do was to take the game back to its roots, so it''s all about cops versus racers. Except this time around, both sides are equipped with the finest motors known to mankind - even machines like the Bugatti Veyron and Lamborghini Reventon will appear with...
Greg Butler January 23, 2014 PS3
Rather than review a recent game this month, I thought I would turn the spotlight on a slightly older favourite, and a game that I think has been a little overlooked in favour of its flashier counterparts. That game is "Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit": a racing game from 2010 that might not have won the kind of plaudits that have been awarded to franchises like Gran Turismo or Forza Motorsport, but which is - in my humble opinion - a lot more fun than both.
The game's greatest strength is its apparent simplicity. This is not a game that's built around in-depth career modes, in which countless variables can be tweaked and endless modifications applied to your vehicle. No, as ridiculous as it may sound in today's world of ultra-detailed racers, this is a game that you can pick up and start playing in less than five minutes - and which is so easy to get to grips with that you'll be winning illegal road-races, stopping criminals, and unlocking countless bonuses within your first hour.
I mentioned winning illegal road-races AND stopping criminals for a reason: because one of the most fun elements of "Hot Pursuit" is that you can alternate between playing as one of the road-racers and playing as a cop who's trying to shut them down. This gives you access to two completely different play modes - one in which you have to win races and avoid the police, and the other in which you have to try and ram illegal racers off the road or otherwise detain them - as well as two different rosters of vehicles (even if a lot of the differences between the racers' and the cops' cars only seem superficial).
Along with the wide variety of tracks (although you only start with a couple of options, you quickly unlock many different routes) and all manner of power-ups and bonuses (particularly the nitro boosts, but also police-radio jammers for the criminals, and spike traps and roadblocks for the cops), it makes for a game that has a surprising amount of depth to go along with its surface simplicity.
On top of the basic mechanics of the game being very satisfying and solid, there are lots of presentational touches that help to make the game look and feel great. The beautiful scenery is surprisingly detailed (even if you only catch glimpses of it as you whizz by) and there are some cool weather and lighting effects that make tracks feel very different depending on what conditions you're racing in. Also, the crashes look amazingly detailed and realistic - an important part of any racing game, especially ones with tracks as challenging as this one - and the soundtrack choices are perfect, with lots of high-energy punk-y rock tracks to keep your adrenaline up.
Finally, this is a very well-designed and user-friendly game in which all of the interfaces (menus, options etc.) are very straightforward and easy to use. It all contributes to the impression that this is a title that has been streamlined to make it as simple as possible, while still serving up maximum enjoyment - which, in my mind, is exactly what a good racer should be.
For anyone who remembers the glory days of games like Sega Rally or Ridge Racer, "Hot Pursuit" feels like a real blast from the past in terms of its arcade style and easy-to-pick-up-and-play nature - but with all sorts of subtle extra trappings that help to enhance, rather than detract from, the core gameplay. Given that this game is a few years old now, you can probably pick it up fairly cheap, so if you see it at a decent price then I'd definitely urge you to pick it up. You'll be pleasantly surprised.
Rizwan Nazir January 04, 2012 360
It's a testament to the fact that pushing into the 2nd year after its release, Need for Speed Hot Pursuit STILL has me coming back for more. I've never really been a fan of the Need for Speed brand but when I heard that Criterion (Burnout Games) were developing the Hot Pursuit game I was intrigued and excited. I opted to write a review because I noticed that the game can now be purchased new at a ridiculously cheap price (Around £15, at the time of writing) and felt that for those who have yet to experience it, that they deserve to know just how good it is.
The rules are straightforward, the game has you playing as both a Cop and a Racer (Arguably a Robber) with a selection of fairly decent sports cars from the off which are available in both guises based on which side of the law you are playing on. You are then placed into the action whereby you have a single interchangeable objective; shut the racers down / escape.
Sounds simple enough, but then you need to add in a few options into the mix:
Police Road Blocks
Police frequency jammers
These vary on the level in question and on your role but greatly heighten the intensity of any given race making the difference between winning and losing. The graphics even today look amazing with dynamic weather and some races long enough to show an in game day to night / night to day transition which looks superb. A rocking soundtrack which can be shuffled whilst playing also gives a rush to an already sublime package.
One of the best things about the game is that all the cars are real life licensed ones and Criterion have amazingly implemented a decent FULL damage mode within. This is something that is missing from so many racing games (I'm looking at you Gran Turismo / Forza). The first time you crash into a racer or force him into the path of an oncoming truck is so satisfying it will put a huge grin on your face. The races have multiple routes, shortcuts, bridges and oncoming traffic to navigate over and above your primary objective. You need to think strategically and use your options wisely to survive a race, often having to play dirty once in a while. The more dangerously (but skilfully) you drive the more you are rewarded.
The computer AI is so good it will leave you speechless at times. I won't spoil it for anyone but on some one-on-one challenges, don't be surprised if the computer AI drives off in the complete opposite direction just when you think you have him pinned down! I very rarely buy DLC for games but on this one I have all of them, including all the specific online modes which allows you to race in teams as cops / racers, or one-on-one with a specific friend/gamer.
Criterion know how to make fun, intense racers and this is no exception. I urge anyone who has still not played the game to order it today and experience it for yourself - you won't be disappointed.
In some ways I am jealous of those who haven't played it as it is a game that I will never forget, especially the first time I used an in-game turbo to outrun the cops! In a weird way I am having to stop myself from purchasing it again as I already have it.
Enough from me, I'm off for another race!
- Need For Speed Hot Pursuit: Multiplayer Challenge 360PS3PC | 02:02 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit - Cop Trailer 360PS3PC | 01:16 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit - Demo Explained 360PS3PC | 02:38 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit - Launch Trailer 360PS3PC | 01:22 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit - Pagani vs Lambo 360PS3PC | 02:15 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit - Sizzle 360PS3PC | 01:27 Play Trailer
- Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit: Uncovered 360PS3PC | 01:44 Play Trailer