ProStreet is the latest installment of the Need for Speed series, and by all accounts it looks to be the most comprehensive one since the franchise started going Underground. This one still has a pseudo-sub-culture bent to it, but at least offers some serious motorsports action, and now you’ll get a chance to try it out for yourself. A demo of the game is now available for Xbox 360 gamers in the Live Marketplace. The demo apparently includes a taste of “grip” racing (called “racing” by you and me) as well as an event they call the Speed Challenge. So, fire up your download queues. Those 650-odd megs aren’t going to install themselves.
ProStreet is just shy of two months away for most of you, and we’re still learning some of the details of this game, including just how the career mode will progress. That’s helped a bit by this new trailer from GameTrailers showing some of the various organizations around the world hosting in-game events. It’s clear from the video that this racer could have perhaps the highest production values of any yet released. The question, of course, is whether the gameplay will live up.
Voodoo Extreme has a set of (heavily retouched, we fear) pictures showing off the drag mode in the upcoming Need for Speed: ProStreet release. The graphics look fantastic and the nose-up launch of that Hemi ‘Cuda certainly looks authentic, and we’re hoping that the overall experience will be slightly more exciting than that seen in other drag games, which tend to be more like reflex tests than anything to do with driving …
GameSpot has had the opportunity to check out an updated version of Need for Speed: ProStreet, and have posted both an updated preview and a video interview with Mark Little, one of the game’s producers. Interestingly, they stress how the game has taken a turn toward realism compared to the previous entries:
As we discovered in our hands-on time with the game, each of the event types in ProStreet has its own charm and its own challenges. With grip races, the challenge is dealing with the heavier feel of the cars. We tried a couple of different grip challenge races with cars, such as a Mitsubishi Lancer, which–while not the hottest car in the lineup–is certainly no slouch. The more realistic feel in ProStreet is most evident in weight transfer, which plays a big role in achieving quick times around the circuits. If you can manage to roll your momentum through the tracks, you’ll be that much quicker each lap. Interestingly, some grip events will feature two classes of cars, and your goal will be to win the race in you current class.
We’ll believe that when we see it, of course coming from the latest NFS entries, it wouldn’t take much of a change to be more realistic. Anyhow, check out the rest of the preview for more impressions of the game, and check out the video interview below.
Team Xbox has posted a new video showing off the career mode in ProStreet which, say what you want about the rest of the game, should be somewhat fun. Unfortunately it’s not something able to be embedded here, so if you’re interested head on over to Team Xbox.
Despite being only three months away, we really haven’t seen all that much of EA’s latest Need for Speed entry, ProStreet, in motion. Today, though, from two sources we have two different videos of the game in motion. Both show lots of, well, tire smoke primarily, but also lots of deformation of car bodies and high-speed racing.
Honestly the first video (below) is pretty reminiscent of NFS games of yore … minus the perfect looking exotics of course. The second video available here shows some rather more generic urban circuit-style racing. Could this be the first truly good NFS in a number of years? At the very least it looks like it’ll be better than our earlier assessment …
PS-Gamer has posted a preview of the upcoming high-impact racer: Need for Speed: ProStreet. The preview touches on a topic close to many readers’ hearts: the general boredom felt when thinking about yet another game in the NFS franchise.
If you were growing a little tired of the solid – if unspectacular – arcade style street racing action of Carbon and Most Wanted (or indeed, the two Underground games before them), then you’re not alone. Market research conducted by EA and developer Black Box revealed that the tried-and-tested Fast and the Furious style arcade romps of recent years simply weren’t pushing gamers’ buttons anymore, and that a fundamental change was required to add depth to the overall package.
While some similarities remain – most notably the fact the cars can be tuned and tinkered with in the most visually outrageous ways possible – the level of changes made to ProStreet run considerably deeper than a mere name change, altering the game’s fundamental concepts in ways Carbon or Most Wanted could only dream of.
We’re thinking it’s going to take more than extended customization options to woo people back to this increasingly more stale series.
As seen at Voodoo Extreme, the guys at Game Informer magazine sat down with John Doyle, a producer on the upcoming ProStreet, about his hopes for the game and how it differs from Carbon. It seems the game will feature something that’s a bit of a rarity among games with licensed cars: the ability to completely wreck them and to roll them onto their roofs.
GI: What you showed us of this game, you’re doing a lot more damage than seems to have been done before. How is that working with car manufacturers? In the past a lot of the car manufacturers—if you’re using a real car, they obviously don’t want to see their cars damaged.
Doyle: The manufacturers have actually been fantastic. We have a strong relationship that we’ve been working for on a lot of years with the Need For Speed games. Every manufacturer in the game has completely signed off on full customization and full damage to their cars, including flipping them, rolling them and totaling them. We’re excited by it. It’s a lot of work to make sure that everyone’s on board and everyone’s OK with it. It’s a lot of travel to a lot of corporate offices, but everyone’s on board and we think it’s going to be pretty cool.
If the now common inclusion of damage is anything to go by, it usually only takes one or two games to start a trend and all the others are quick to follow, so maybe in Forza Motorsport 3 we’ll finally have cars that suffer a bit of frame damage when the hit the wall at 150mph, or roll over when they get spun sideways. Still, whether or not it’ll make this game worth playing remains to be seen.
Last week’s revelation of just what the next Need for Speed would be didn’t exactly answer a lot of questions fans had. Namely: is this just Underground with brighter colors? It seems it’s not…at least not intended to be anyway. 1UP has conducted an interview with Senior Producer Mike Mann about the game where he talks a little about it, including the title, which expresses a desire to chart the “evolution of professionalism within street racing.” He goes on to explain a bit more about how the game will be played:
The whole game is wrapped around multidisciplinary race weekends, which have more of a festival vibe. It’s like a big show. These weekends are focused on four types of racing: drag, drift, speed, and grip. Drag racing was switched out for drifting in Need for Speed: Carbon because we felt we’d done everything we could do with that particular gameplay mechanic at the time, and drifting was becoming increasingly fashionable. Now that we’ve had some time to work on it, we feel we’ve really found a way to handle drag in a different way. In ProStreet you’re really going to be able to feel what it’s like to put down all that power and blast away from the line.
So, it’s Carbon with drag racing, then? There’s more, too, including so-called “speed racing,” where racers head to deserted desert (irony) roads and see who can hit the highest top speed. And then there’s something they sadly call “grip racing.” This is what most people would just call “racing,” i.e. the sort of driving where you try to go fast using grip. It seems we’ve reached a point where, in an NFS game, any racing mode where you don’t drift needs to be explicitly differentiated from one in which you do.