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Need For Speed: Most Wanted Review
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Need For Speed: Most Wanted, EA’s latest foray into the NFS franchise, is now available from the app store. Sporting some of mobile racing’s best graphics to date, a variety of powerful vehicles to unlock, and the menacing presence of “the law” to throw a monkey wrench into the standard racing formats, Need For Speed: Most Wanted not only plays fantastically, but looks great doing it.

Need For Speed: Most Wanted Pros:

  • Impressive graphics and smooth, action-packed gameplay
  • Rocking soundtrack and power-heavy sound effects add to the experience
  • Tilt and touch controls are available for steering, very responsive
  • Addition of police involvement makes for exciting circumstances
  • Nice variety of vehicle types, locations, and race types, as well as vehicle mods to improve performance

Need For Speed: Most Wanted Cons:

  • Origin system used instead of GameCenter for social gaming aspects
  • No persistent vehicle mods

Need For Speed: Most Wanted features three dozen vehicles to unlock and race, spanning a number of vehicle types from everyday and muscle cars to SUVs, exotics, and more. You’ll start with enough cash to buy a Ford Focus, with subsequent races typically rewarding you with enough money to move up to a Mitsubishi Lancer or Audi A1. Before long, you’ll be raking in the dough from top 3 finishes, allowing you to afford to pick up some really sweet rides. There are a handful of race types in which to engage, from a standard 6-car race to the finish to a head-to-head competition and time trials where you compete against your best time. Races play out in a fairly limited number of locations that represent different areas within Fairhaven, USA. One of the great wrinkles in this version involves the presence of police vehicles that attempt to ram you off the road and disrupt your getaway with road blocks, all while you continue to compete against AI racers to reach the finish line. You do have the ability to take them down with well-timed push maneuvers, offering you an instant refill of your nitrous meter when you do. Otherwise, your nitrous meter slowly fills as you progress. Drifting is easy to accomplish, and there is a brake pedal if needed, though we didn’t find any use for it.

Graphically, Need For Speed: Most Wanted brings some of the best graphics to the iDevices yet. Environments feature crisp detail and the cars are gorgeous. Damage taken during the race is reflected in the models, with shattered windows and detached front ends acting as testament to your aggressiveness. The game offers a visceral sense of speed and the smoothness of the gameplay makes it incredibly enjoyable to play. Driving is controlled via touch or tilt, though the tilt controls were so spot on that we never even bothered with the touch, opting for the more realistic feeling of turning the device like a wheel to maintain control. Sliding your thumb upward on the right side of the screen will initiate nitrous, which uses up everything in your reserve in one go. Tapping in the lower left corner allows you to brake, while tapping the lower right corner initiates drifting around curves. The soundtrack provides up-tempo techno/rock tracks to keep the adrenaline flowing. Sound effects reinforce the power of the vehicles, and police chatter alerts you to their presence and any upcoming road blocks they have planned.

Replay value is great, as you earn Speed Points during play that unlocks new race locations and vehicles for purchase. It’ll take a while to get everything unlock and longer still to be able to purchase them all. Vehicle mods become available as you play, giving you the ability to add items to specific vehicles to improve performance on a per-race basis. The only shortcoming that left us a bit disappointed was the lack of multiplayer outside of forcing players to use the Origin system. As far as we can tell, using the system doesn’t allow you to race against any friends, but rather see their times and try to top them on the leaderboards. We would prefer to see GameCenter utilized, as it’s the most robust social gaming network available on the platform. Otherwise, Need For Speed: Most Wanted is another solid racing game, providing a 4.5-Dimple premium experience at a premium $6.99 price point.

Need For Speed: Most Wanted Review, reviewed by Kevin on 2012-11-03T23:35:55+00:00 rating 4.5 out of 5

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