HOT PURSUIT marks a turning point for EA’s successful 16-year Need for Speed racing franchise.
The latest title ditches standard races in exchange for cat-and-mouse chases between police cars and other speeding drivers. EA is confident the new title will be a return to form for Need for Speed.
“I’ve been at EA for a few years now and it’s definitely the best Need for Speed I’ve seen to date, comfortably,” says EA UK product manager Kevin Flynn.
“Shift was a great game but different and a bit serious, whereas Hot Pursuit is more fun and accessible. The quality is definitely there.”
Hot Pursuit is developed by Burnout creators Criterion. Players are rewarded for racing on the wrong side of the road as their nitro boost gauge will charge quicker – and gamers can shunt cars to knock them off the road in Burnout-style takedowns. And while racers get nitro boosts and weapons, cops get roadblocks, helicopters and speed spike strips to stop them.
There’s also an emphases on seriously sexy supercars in Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, with the Lamborghini Reventon, McLaren MP4, Bugatti Veyron and loads of others to choose from.
But it’s the game’s Autolog system that drives innovation. On top of the single-player cop and racer career modes, an in-game social network keeps track of players’ fast times and accomplishments, and allows friends to challenge one another – both offline or online.
Flynn adds: “It’s totally about social competition. The connectivity opens the game up. People have families, jobs and social lives so they have less time to play. So this is something that’s going to appeal to that audience in a massive way.”
A ticket to ride
Hot Pursuit comes with a few optional extras – and some features fitted as standard.
Limited edition models
EA is releasing a Limited Edition of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit.
Buyers will gain access to the following six exotic cars out of the box:
- Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione
- Ford Shelby GT500
- Audi TT RS Coupé
- Chevrolet Camaro SS
- Porsche Cayman S
- Dodge Challenger SRT8
EA says the six cars give players a day-one advantage at competing against friends.
The game is set in an an open world that emulates the California coastline and features desert, forest, seaside and mountainous regions. The world is also four times bigger than that of Burnout Paradise.