The first reviews for EA's Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit are live, and it looks as if the publisher and developer Criterion has a big hit on its hands.
At the time of writing the (PS3 version of the) game is averaging a very impressive 92 per cent on Metacritic. If that sticks it will make it the highest scoring game in the series' history, easily overtaking the 83 per cent average earned by last year's more serious Need for Speed: Shift from Slightly Mad Studios.
It also means Hot Pursuit, currently, is tracking ahead of another game whose reviews went live today – Call of Duty: Black Ops.
At its root Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit is about an exotic sense of speed, glamour and action, which it accomplishes on a level we've come to expect from Criterion racers,” CVG's review reads. It's fast, luxurious and recreates that big budget Hollywood chase sequence perfectly.”
IGN adds: Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit is pure over-the-top driving entertainment. The cars and environments are gorgeous, the crashes are spectacular, and the new Autolog feature breathes new life into the time-honored tradition of video game competition among friends.
The single-player races can become somewhat repetitive and there are some presentation issues, but overall, Hot Pursuit is a blast. If you're looking for a high-octane racer that grabs on tight but doesn't take itself too seriously, give this one a shot.”
And Eurogamer isn't shy with its praise, either.
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit is an unqualified triumph,” it states. It's stuffed with content but rarely for the sake of it, and knowing Criterion it will be handsomely supported for months to come, even though it's already the best pure arcade racing game since Burnout Paradise. For Need for Speed, it's a return to critical form to match, justify and potentially expand the series' enduring popularity.”