EA has a lot of making up to do for the disaster that was Need For Speed: The Run. Fans are disillusioned and will approach the next instalment in the franchise with trepidation. Can EA win back fans loyalty with its rebooted version of Need For Speed: Most Wanted?
According to EA, Most Wanted is progressing with the times, and is “designed for a new, more connected generation of racing fans [which will] offer players an expansive open world.“ Criterion Games have been entrusted to do the relaunch of the hugely popular title that sold almost 6 million copies globally since 2005.
An open world in a racer is certainly new and innovative. But then so was putting a decent story line in a racer and that failed miserably in The Run. Its painfully stagnated and linear progression was far from what gamers wanted in a racing game and it seems EA have reacted drastically by creating a sandbox environment in this next release.
This open world, called Fairhaven City, is designed to fully immerse players and see an end to menus in multi-player. Players will be able to race any time anywhere with the only constraint being “there are no rules.“ This basically means the player has more freedom as to when and where they race the constant being there is a start and finish to each race. The open world component alludes to players being able to use the terrain around them to test their skills and find races at amongst it all.
Players will have to watch out for plenty of cops in Fairhaven city as there will be plenty of “epic cop chases.” Cops will be on to you as soon as they spot you speeding, crashing or driving dangerously.
Autolog is EA’s matchmaking service in racing games and an update version is set to be released with the game. Autolog 2, is “the next evolution of the ground-breaking, friend-connecting Autolog technology, players can once again recommend gameplay challenges across their social network.”
This major difference between the two versions is that you will now be able to use this feature in both single player and multiplayer gameplay. I am assuming this means leaderboards can be followed in single player mode, which was done successfully in Trials Evolution.
Everything the player does, in game, earns them Speed Points. It is with these points that establishes the Most Wanted list (aka the leaderboard).
It is a risky move bringing a well known racing game into this kind of environment. EA took a risk with The Run and that was an utter failure. It would seem they have rolled the dice again with such an out there idea for this kind of genre. The question remains can EA find success in the relaunch of Most Wanted?
Need for Speed Most Wanted will be released 30/10/2012 in North America and 1/11/2012 Europe and Australia.