Review by Dorkaroonie

"Less customization, more racing. Hallelujia."

Most Wanted goes back to its Need for Speed roots by concentrating more on the driving and a bit less on the customization.

The game works like so: You're a street racer (duh) and you run into some people who aren't very much fond of you. The leader of this group, as well as your main rival in the game, is #15 on a blacklist of 15 racers. His gang rigs your car (obviously without your knowing) and you race him. Your car, being rigged, craps out on you and he wins the race, as well as the pink slip to your car. He then uses your car and gets to #1 on the Blacklist. And thus begins the game. Mia, your "hookup" in the game, hooks you up with a selection of rides from which you select your starting vehicle. You win races, get money, customize the car and work your way up the blacklist to get to #1 and beat your main rival. Naturally, the more you move up, the more areas and customization parts you unlock. In order to challenge a blacklisted rider, you must complete a preset list of challenges. These include having achieved a certain number of milestones gained during cop chases (such as "Avoid 3 roadblocks" or "Trade paint"), having won a certain number of races and having your bounty at a certain amount.

While the customization is here, it's definitely not as varied as in Underground 2. For starters, you can't customize headlights or taillights, the muffler tip or add neons (which makes sense since the races take place during the daytime). As for body kits, you get just that. You choose from a rather small selection of about 7 or 8 preset body kits for your car, which means you can't individually add front bumpers, back bumpers or side skirts. To keep it short, the same goes for most of the customization options. Less variation is basically it. I, however, like this since I spend less time trying to make my car look like a beast and more time unleashing that beast on the streets. But don't shy away right away, though. While the customization options are limited, there's still alot present to make your car look like one mean machine.

Cop chases are well done. The police will use an array of tactics to bust you, including trying to box you with several cars, popping your tires with spikes, road blocks, SUVs ramming you head on and more. It's real fun listening in on their radio since it really does sound like a real life car chase. They communicate with each other and come up with tactics and it's just plain fun listening in.

That's roughly it. If you liked Underground 2, definitely give this one a shot. It may focus less on the customization but it goes back to concentrating on what Need for Speed is all about... the racing.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 11/30/05

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