Need For Speed is one of the longest running game franchises in the industry—and quite possibly the most veteran in the racing genre. The first NFS appeared back in 1994 and was as close as console gamers had ever gotten to a sim racer, featuring realistic (for the time) handling and real-world cars. Over the years sequels came and went, as did NFS‘s reputation among gamers. Now, NFS is old enough to buy itself a beer, but is this latest version—a reboot developed by Ghost Games and the series’ 22nd entry—any good?
NFS is an open world racing game, a subgenre we first saw with games such as Test Drive Unlimited back in 2006. The action takes place in Ventura Bay, where no one ever sleeps and the sun never shines, because the entire game takes place at night. You play an unnamed driver who meets up with Spike, a trustafarian and young Brad Pitt lookalike (played by Adam Long) who introduces you to his rather engaging crew of underground racers, drifters, and tuners.
As with most games of this sort, you start out off with a rather cheap and underpowered car—in this case either a Honda Civic Type-R (the EK9 version), Ford Mustang (Fox body), or Subaru BRZ. You’ll be able to supe your car up with prize money from races and drifting competitions, or you can save your winnings and upgrade to something faster and more exotic, including bona fide icons like the 1973 Porsche 911 RSR, Ferrari’s legendary F40, or even the just-released McLaren 570S. Choose wisely; your garage will only hold up to five cars, so you’ll have to sell one if you fill it up and want to drive something else.