Need for Speed's recent purple patch ends in the mixed influences of this flat and awkward reboot.
Need for Speed looks the part, sounds the part, and is surprisingly reverent to real-world car culture. I like the direction Ghost has taken here, and I think it's the right one, but beneath its flashy exterior it's not quite firing on all cylinders.
A tragically misjudged series reboot that gets all of the fundamentals wrong, while adding absolutely nothing new to the franchise except flashier graphics.
Need for Speed takes driving into a gorgeous world with a modern edge, but its pesky attitude and strict online-only requirement make you yearn for the good old days.
Blazing through the night provides some fun racing moments, but NFS doesn't support or assemble its constituent parts to any cumulative positive
Need For Speed borrows from the series' past to create an excellent street racer with a handful of obnoxious but ultimately forgivable problems.
The quality feel of the driving and nice-looking environment are buried under heaps of technical issues and bland objectives.
Need for Speed returns to its urban car culture roots with a gorgeous-looking, very well designed game that offers five different racing styles to tackle - and a bevy of interesting cars to modify and make your own. Its story is a lot of fun, and it's set in an impressively large environment that is very enjoyable to drive around. A great arcade racer that's both challenging and addictive.
This year's installment of Need For Speed isn't the end-all-be-all, but it has proven there are still great things to be offered to the genre. Each car is crafted extremely well both visually and audibly. Engines give strong roars as they power up for quick releases. Tires scream with a certain screech when pulling off the perfect drift. Through the nuts and bolts, getting to the core of the title, it's all mostly safe and directed in a simple form. It's a solid base to grow from—few complaints but few things to gush over.
When you factor in Need for Speed's forgettable story, you're left with a slightly above average racing game that's not as enjoyable as past series entries. From a pure gameplay perspective, it works, but it never manages to elevate itself. If you're in the mood for a new cinematic racer though, you could do a whole lot worse.
Need For Speed feels like a plucky contender, that is close to greatness but tragically falters at number of key moments. There is genuinely plenty of fun to be had in its world, and the return to the themes of Need For Speed: Underground are welcome. However, there simply isn't the level of consistent quality that the franchise has had during Criterion's stewardship, despite a large number of their staff moving to Ghost Games, and indeed in a number of ways it feels like a step back from 2013's Rivals. This year's Need For Speed is close to greatness, but it doesn't quite make the podium.
2015's Need for Speed is in many ways more grounded than other recent entries. You don't throw spike strips at each other and you don't jump off buildings. It's more about the inherent excitement of dodging traffic and drifting down the side of a mountain. The customization features are a welcome return, and the five-layered career lets you play with different approaches to driving. Some aspects of Need for Speed could use more variety, but it's a solid foundation to move the series forward..
If you're a long-time fan of the series, you'll find something to enjoy here, but if this is your first time behind the wheel, you're going to want sit this one out and check out some of previously-released Need for Speed titles.
A perfectly serviceable racer with great looks, plenty of customisation options, and passable driving, but it's a real shame that latest reboot of this franchise had the hallmarks of the greats in the series' past and could have been truly special.
The customization and racing itself is fantastic, but Need For Speed reboot has certainly not gotten out to a fast start behind frame rate issues and the insistence to be always online.
Slow, boring, and rarely challenging, Need For Speed is a serious misstep.
The Need for Speed reboot improves upon several of the more recent installments in the game, which were plagued with problems more serious than these. But I was disappointed when my pure joy in the look and driving feel of NFS drained away over time, sucked out by boring treks across the city and one too many encounters with unfair A.I.
Just how many fist-bumps you're willing to sit through may determine your longevity with its achingly desperate attempts to be millennial and street (the loading tips are a confusion of Twitter and WhatsApp or whatever it is the kidz are into these days), but perfecting your drift by practise and tweaking is an extremely rewarding – if ridiculously arcadey – fun time.
EA's famous racer is promisingly rebooted in its 21st installment, but still needs some work under the hood
This year's Need for Speed reboot feels like a fresh start for the series — and one that will likely be improved upon when its inevitable 2016 sequel rolls around.