Review by racer129

"Need for Speed: Most Wanted - Does it really live up to its expectations and advertising?"

Need for Speed: Most Wanted, or as Gamefaqs calls it "Need for Speed: Most Wanted - A Criterion Game", is the 19th game installment of the famous video game racing branch "Need for Speed." This game has been advertised greatly during the previous months by means of videos. In every single video, the game looks amazing, like cars drifting around the city. Through the trailers, it pretty seems awesome and special. Everything there in the videos indicates the game belongs to another category of awesomeness; but, at the end, some of your expectations might be in taters.

Music and Sounds - 7/10

The choice of songs of this game is not that good. Some of the songs there doesn't fit the theme of the game itself. On the other hand, other songs are well picked and are awesome. My personal favorite song is "Butterflies and Hurricanes" made by Muse. I consider this song as the theme song of the game since it is the song played during the introduction. The sounds of the virtual world, on the other hand, is great. When you turn off your music, put on some headphones, turn off your car, and you close your eyes, it seems so real. My personal favorite is where you go at harbors or piers. The sound of the waves crashing to the rocks, the sound of seagulls flying in the air, and the sound of wind hitting your car will seriously make you think you are visiting a private beach with your girlfriend.

Graphics - 7/10

This game, is without a doubt, a really good looking game. The graphics are awesome, and sometimes, reality and digital kind of merge. When you drift, or even just drive fast, your sides blur, just like in real life. The animation of the cars are also great. When you switch cars, the animation of the logo the car you are entering shows in your screen. The animation is like a key dropping from point A, down to the lowest point, and onto point B. The graphics are also great when you crash. Even though that sounded negative, it not, well, at least for the graphics. When you crash, it actually seems you are looking at it at a 3rd world way. Also, when you hit something, some pieces detach from your car, giving you the impression of just having a fender-bender against objects. The cops also have reality in them. The spike strips seems so real. Their roadblocks, and other obstacles look extremely authentic. Some bad things about the graphics though is sometimes, being too real is kind of tough. Sometimes, the glare of the sun is really strong. If it shines on you, like, right in front of you, your eyes burn a little. Also, when you are racing in a tunnel, and you suddenly exit the tunnel with your eyes unprepared, the glare of the sun, yet again, hurts your eyes, but this time, even more.

Movies - 4/10

The movies of this game is extremely weird, and some which is just not right. Before any race, there is a short film,which you can skip. If this happens, I recommend you skip the movies. Some of the movies include cars floating through the air, or a single cop car multiply into and infinite number, or cop cars drop from the sky like rain. The most bizarre of these films for me is when cop cars merge to make like a giant out of control wheel chasing you throughout the city. I mean seriously, even though the animation is great, the movie itself just doesn't fit the game's style. These films are just weird, and wrong. Although, 11 movies are particularly awesome. Those are the Most Wanted 10 intros and the introduction movie.

Physics - 7/10

The Physics of this game is pretty good. The physics of this game is not like the old games where when you crash, you just stop automatically. Here, when you crash, you tumble, you twirl, you spin, just like a real car crash. Here, drifting physics is also improved. When you drift, smoke from the tires happen because of friction. When you stop from high speeds using the handbrake, you will spin to your side and. When you use the brake pedal however, you will keep on going for some more distance. This happens also in real life, but with a higher chance of injury. When you takedown a cop or a racer, it is just pretty easy to do. Just hit them at the back with speed, and they'll crash into the wall, or onto a barrier, or to another car. This is kind of sad since cops no longer has that amount of challenge they had 7-8 years ago, where you really need to hit them as hard as possibly to take them down.

Gameplay - 6/10

The gameplay of NFS:MW is actually more different than what I was hoping. Even though it has no story, you have one single objective to finish. That is to be the Most Wanted (of course) of Fairhaven. The primary way to get upgrades it to win races in second, or first. This may seem fun at first, but after you get and race using dozens of cars, you'll notice you are simply repeating the same races over and over again. You are only doing it in different cars. After some time, you will get bored from playing this.

Another flaw of this game it its Paint Shops. Each paint shop buffs out all the damages, and re-sprays your car in another color. Even though this seems good, there are so many paint shops located in the city. In fact, it is impossible you haven't ran into a paint shop every 5 minutes. The design of the paint shop too is flawed. The design of these is just like the drive-thrus in Burnout Paradise. You also cannot manually pick you color. You actually have to go in and out of the paint shop multiple times to have your desired color.

Some attributes of cop chases were also cut down. Pursuit Breakers and Cooldown Spots were also eliminated from the game. These two attributes were replaced by going through paint shops (to take out 1 heat level) and changing of cars. Both must be done while in cooldown mode in order to avoid being seen. Helicopters were also removed from the game. Reinflating tires replaced helicopters in the game. In my own opinion, this isn't right since there are no reinflating tires in the real world. Because of these changes, the pursuit system became easier to beat. This made being the most wanted easier, compared to the first game released in 2005. This also became relatively easier than Need for Speed's award winning game "Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit," which was released on 2010.

All in all - 7/10

Even though this game has flaws, some are minor, and some are like a sledgehammer to the stomach, it is still a very good game. It is a nice game, but I know Need for Speed will become better at their next game.

My Final Recommendation: Buy it, but don't expect it to be the game of the year.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 01/25/13

Game Release: Need for Speed: Most Wanted (US, 10/30/12)

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