Review by scarecrow_nj

"The Best Seller is Back"

After the massive success of the original Need for Speed: Underground, it was no shock to see the sequel rise to the top of the best selling charts. And the release has lived up to most 's expectations. This is another marvelous game by EA and improves upon the original in every aspect.

The first thing you will notice is the massive free-roam city where all the shops, garages are situated, as well as the race courses which are integrated into the city's streets. You are able to drive your car (or ride) wherever you like in the city and come across rivals which you can challenge to an outrun race.

In the original, all the car parts were available for you to buy in the one garage or shop. In NFSU2 there are numerous different shops that you need to drive to in order to get different parts for your ride. There are body, performance, graphics and car specialties shops each with a huge amount of different parts for you to buy and install. The number of parts and designs is incredible and now there truly is an unlimited amount of design combinations.

Scattered around the city are various race events that you will have to find yourself by driving around and looking at clues on your map. There are two new race modes, Street X and Outrun. Street X is a race on a tight, technical course that rewards precise driving more than absolute speed. Outrun mode is triggered by driving close to a rival car making their way around the streets and challenging them. If you lose them by more than 200 metres you win, if you get behind by more than 200 m, you will lose.

The driving physics in NFSU2 are more realistic than in the original. The cars feel realistically more heavy and respond more accurately. There are alot more cars in NFSU2, including new sports utility vehicles and even a hummer! These new vehicles add a new element to the driving.

The track design has been improved as well. For those of you that found yourselves hitting the restart button 100 times in one race than this will be your dream come true. The tracks are frustrating in appropriate moments, not at every single bend like in the original. No longer will you find yourself running into a tunnel support 50 metres before the finish line. Although, the traffic is just as challenging as in the first, but they too drive more realistically.

NFSU2 offers a great amount to fans of the original and newcomers to the series. A sequel worthy of the title of best seller.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 01/04/05

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