New, Used, Abused: Need For Speed Undercover

Latest in the Need for Speed series, undercover takes a different direction. a good direction, well..

When I heard about this game I was hopeful that it might be something that I’d enjoy. It’s been a while since racing games have been worthwhile playing, and I thought this might be fun.

First off, you’re thrown into this highspeed car chase with a billion cops following you, and you have to escape by outrunning them. Well shit, this might actually be good! The scene ends.

You’re rewarded with a cutscene, with a chick telling some balding 30 year old that he has to infiltrate a group of smugglers by street racing (see Fast and Furious). First initial though was “I don’t want to play as this guy! He’s old, boring, and kind of a dick!”. But I figured I could look past that seeing as he never gets out of the car. So whatever.

Then I’m thrown into a blank and dull city, which looks like they stole the maps from Burnout Paradise. Freeroaming is back much to my dislike, but it’s okay, because you can basically start races on every street, again something I saw in Paradise. What happened EA? This was a brand you actually created more or less, and you’ve stooped to ripping off other racing games.

To their credit the cars handle pretty well, but they’ve taken out all the interesting race types but in most wanted, so you’re stuck with ciruit, sprint, and this weird mode where you have to race past someone for x minutes or x meters. It’s honestly not that fun. Oh, and sometimes you need to get the police on you, but it takes forever and really if I wanted to run from police I’d play GTA.

The graphics are good of course, but so is everything these days and really has since ceased to matter. Gameplay is what people want, which is why they play games like Plants Vs Zombies, Killing Floor or even World of Goo. You’ve got to make your game interesting to play, or there’s no point playing and people will quit.

Which is actually precisely what I did. After about 2 hours I quit because I KNEW that the game would just be more and more of this mindless crap. The game ended up becoming this mindless run from street to street without knowing what the hell was going on. It felt like a dream, but a really annoying pointless one. I want my characters to have at least 2 Dimensions, not… well none to be honest. I want my gameplay to be fun,  not repeatitive and boring. I want to actually know what the hell’s going on.

This must be the shortest review I’ve made yet, but really there’s not much to say about this game. To my credit I’ve never quit a game before like ten hours before,  so that’ll give you an idea of how much this game seems like a waste of time to me.

So buy this game if you don’t mind racing in what feels like a repeatitive sludge that was stolen from other franchises. Personally I now know why it was selling for $20 now.


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