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Need for Speed Hot Pursuit

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Game Reviewed: Need for Speed Hot Pursuit
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Developer: Criterion Games
Reviewer: Matt Lewis
Platform: Xbox 360 (also on PS3 & PC)
Category: Racing
ESRB Rating: E10+
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Game Description:

Do you like to drive fast? Well, get comfortable! Need for Speed Hot Pursuit lets you do just that. In a high octane racer that incorporates many different aspects from various racing genres, the latest NFS installment returns to its roots. With memories of the first Hot Pursuit game still running through my head in all of its pixelated goodness, I had high expectations for the next-gen refinement. Criterion Games, the developer behind the Burnout series, has delivered yet again! Many aspects of the Burnout franchise are in this game, and Criterion's incredible attentiveness to detail is highly displayed here. The graphics are stunning and the gameplay is delightfully intense making this certainly one of the best racing games of the year.

Need for Speed includes many different modes of play. You can play single player, which puts you in the driver's seat of a classic car that is being pursued, or you can play on the side of the law, in which you chase down and incapacitate the lead-footed hooligans. In addition, there is an online mode, where you can compete against friends, either head-to-head or merely in a points competition.

What Parents Need to Know

Violence

Because it is a racing game, there is not much violence. Cars will flip and roll when they collide with other vehicles.

When playing as a cop, the goal is to get the racers to stop by causing them to crash. Different tools become available to assist with this. For example, spike strips and EMP’s can temporarily disable a car.

Language

Some of the music may contain some mild questionable content, but it is hard to hear the lyrics over the sound of the engines and the police radio.

Sexual Content

See Language Section.

Spiritual Content

See Language Section.

Misc.

As always, parents should closely monitor any online interactions. Need for Speed Hot Pursuit does offer online gameplay.

As the title vaguely suggests, there is the option to choose which side of the law you prefer. You can pursue or be pursued. Aside from choosing which car you are driving, cop or civilian, there are no other moral issues that can be played out in the game.

Reviewer's Thoughts

Overall, I really enjoyed this game. I am a picky gamer when it comes to the racing genre, because they are mostly a dime a dozen. Need for Speed Hot Pursuit certainly does not fall under that category. This is a well-made game, and a wonderful throwback to previous racing titles. After a few NFS flops, it seems that they have found their way home again. The graphics are fantastic, and the cars look beautiful. There is nothing like driving through the lamp lit streets in a sparkling silver Camaro. The racing is tense, and is not easy in any sense of the word. The learning curve is a happy medium. It does not take long to learn, but it constantly improves with practice.

My only complaint is that the single-player campaign gets monotonous after a while. Once you have played on a few circuits, there is really nothing new to offer. It seems to make up for this, though, by offering the option of playing as a police officer.

All in all, this is a very decent game. If you are looking for a fun racer, I lend my emphatic support to Need for Speed Hot Pursuit.



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