For me this was the best racing game ever, awesome soundtrack. I never played a racing game with a better soundtrack then this game...everything about this game was fun... If This ever gets remastered for ps3 I am most def buying this. To me this is the best racer ever. This should of easily got a 10..
I think that the police AI was a factor in it not getting a 10, as I could easily predict their driving patterns as well as their roadblocks and helicopters.
As for the soundtrack, I like it as well, but I think hands-down the best soundtrack to a racing game ever is in Need for Speed 3: Hot Pursuit.
Excluding Underground 1, I've played every single NFS game up until Pro Street, and this one has a the best soundtrack of the series, but I'd have to give the best soundtrack award to Midnight Club: LA. At least to the rock and hard rock playlists. They have some great songs that somehow make you drive much better than you would under normal circumstances. Songs like Reach for the Sky by Social Distortion, Indestructible by Disturbed, and Partie Traumatic by Black Kids, just to name a few.