Need For Speed Heat

Need For Speed used to be a fun little racer that you could play split-screen against your mate (or wife) on the original Playstation. It’s grown up a bit since then, but not as much as the rest of the industry.

Need For Speed Heat retains much of what has helped it remain a fan favorite, a huge amount of customization and being one of the only racers that have police that try and stop you having fun. Heat introduces a day-night option, with different rules for each. This works well, but both sides of the day suffer from the same issues.

The main issue is that for an open-world racer, Heat still feels like it’s stuck in an old 80’s arcade, you know, one of those racers where you sit down in the fake car with a steering wheel and peddles. The handling and physics just don’t feel that fresh.

Sure it’s supposed to be a street racer, but haven’t we all learned how to drive video game cars by now? Can’t we have more realistic feeling cars? Can’t we feel like we’re pushing them to the limit rather than being safe in the knowledge that drifting is the most basic driving skill in the NFS world?

And then there are the cops. I do like the aspect of being in a police chase, but it gets frustrating when a cop blocks you, so you stop, throw the car in reverse and as you’re backing away from him you get arrested!!

So the pros are that Heat looks pretty. Real pretty. The night/day concept is cool, and who doesn’t like the option of fleeing from the police?

The cons, however, are that it feels like it hasn’t grown up. And that’s fine if you want to go play with a bunch of three-year-olds and their Hotwheels cars, but if you’re playing on a modern gaming console you probably want a more meaty experience.

Rating: M Suitable for mature audiences 16 years and over. NOTE: Coarse language, online interactivity.

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