Need For Speed: World PC (Free-to-Play) Review
Peter Donnell / 5 years ago
Almost every gamer must have heard of the Need For Speed franchise, it’s been around for a very long time now and NFS: World marked the 15th installment in the series when it was released back in July 2010. EA released in the free-to-play format for Windows PC’s. For those of you who have played older Need For Speed titles, this game will immediately seem very familiar, taking from the visual and play style of titles such as NFS: Underground, Most Wanted and Carbon, as opposed to the more recent simulation style games like NFS: Shift.
Graphics are reasonable too, they are not going to win any awards for best in class, but they are clean and tidy enough to be kind to the eye and not so heavy that a low/mid range pc couldn’t run it. If you’ve played NFS Carbon, you can expect a similar level of detail and graphics here.
EA have gone to the world of MMO’s for inspiration on this one, with a sturdy progression system built into the game, along with a points/money system to help you upgrade your car and obtain game changing power ups such as speed boosts and the ability to turn opponents cars magnetic to attract nearby traffic, or even turn your car into an almost unstoppable juggernaut for smashing through police blockades, traffic and your opponents.
There are nearly 100 cars on offer in NFS: World, all fully licensed and supplying a mixture of Muscle, Tuner and Exotic cars for you to tear around the city streets in, with extensive customisation options and upgrades available throughout the game, meaning even with 100′s of players on the roads you’re not likely to see two cars the same.
There are a lot of options when it comes to making purchases in NFS World, there is the in game credits system, where you earn cash from winning races which you can then use to upgrade or buy items, you can sell old cars back to the game, you can rent certain cars for a smaller fee and some require the use of the Speedboost, which you can top up using real world money. Either way there is plenty on offer if you’re playing for free and for those willing to part with some loose change.
The world on offer here comes in the form of an extensive city road network, based upon the two cities Rockport and Palmon, from the Most Wanted and Carbon games in the series, while some of the area do seem a bit similar after a while a quick tour around in free drive will have you discovering all kinds of hidden nooks on the map, where can go on a treasure hunt to unlock bonuses if you find all 15 hidden gems on the map.
While most of the races focus around the point to point or curcuit race formula, which can be played in party mode, for when your friends are online, multiplayer for online matchmaking and single player, in which case you will be pitted against CPU opponents, or you can take part in classic need for speed tradition, police chases, in the games Team Escape mode, where you and upto 3 more racers must survive until the time runs out or until you reach your objective, but expect the police to be extremely suicidal in their attempts to take you down, with dozens of road blocks, spike strips, head on assaults and constant ramming, but it’s definitely a lot of fun regardless.
Finishing a race with a podium finish unlocks a reward card, you get to select one of five random cards, which when clicked flips over to reveal a prize, which range from power ups, upgrades, extra exp and bonus credits although you can also purchase packs of these prize cards with your Speedboost credits, if you have any of course.
Matchmaking was especially quick with this game, with a great persistent interface at the top of the screen to allow you to jump/search for the nearest available race, or just bring up the map to teleport to any events you have unlocked or to other areas of the map for you to drive around in free play mode.
Driving around in NFS World you can see the large number of other players simultaneously occupying the streets, although you can’t make physical constant with their cars and it can be quite disorientating when someone comes flying through your car after a blind turn. The only time you can make contact with an opponent is in one of the games events and races.
Overall I really enjoyed this game, although it got some mediocre reviews upon it’s release, I’ve had a lot of fun playing it. The old school NFS style is a long term classic, but you either love it or hate it, bear in mind though that little, if anything has changed in terms of the handling physics and general gameplay since some of the games PlayStation 1 roots, which in my opinion is a good thing, but if you’re looking for a fast paced, competitive racer that doesn’t cost a penny to purchase, with a very reasonable size map and lots of content on offer, then you would be mad not to give Need For Speed World a try. Because of the fun I’ve had with this game and how much gameplay I got from it, not to mention the fact I will continue to play it after this review, I am awarding it our Gamers Choice Award.