Need for Speed Rivals Ponderings

I managed to acquire two copies of Need for Speed Rivals for myself and the man on Monday, for the bargain price of £24.99 each. We’ve been wanting to get out hands on this for quite some time, and waiting for a decent price, so when I saw it in GAME at such a low price, it had to be bought. Even though I’m on my self-imposed game buying ban, I couldn’t resist.

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We’ve managed to play it for a good few hours so far, and it’s overall much more enjoyable than the lacklustre effort of Most Wanted. Although GHOST have combined the good bits of both Hot Pursuit and Most Wanted into one game, it’s still got a few teething issues on the multiplayer, but that doesn’t really bother me.

I like the idea that you can drive around with other players in a randomly generated public map, however I have set mine to private as I’m, as you may be aware, not overly keen on multiplayer anyway. Setting it to private, I can drive around on my own, or I can invite friends, and this is quite a nice luxury. When myself and the man were playing together, it was nice to be doing entirely different events, but still be playing on the same map, and even occasionally driving past each other.

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The map appears to be quite extensive, with a lot of varying terrain, which is a pleasant change from the cityscape feel of Most Wanted. It’s not quite Hot Pursuit in my eyes, but it’s an evolution I suppose. I’m still not very good at it, but it’s enjoyable nonetheless.

This time around, the cars aren’t unlocked and you must earn them by completing sets of objectives as you progress through the game. The frustrating part is, that even though you have unlocked the car, it must still be purchased with speed points. This feels like an unnecesary element, but thankfully speed points aren’t too hard to come by, as long as you bank them without being busted.

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This is one of the most frustrating parts, if only as a racer; if you don’t bank your speed points and your car is either wrecked or you’re busted by the cops, then you lose everything. I can see why they’ve done it, it adds an element of challenge, but I really wish it could be turned off for those of us (me) who aren’t necessarily that skilled. I probably spend more time crashing into walls and other cars than doing anything else.

It’s nice to have relative freedom to drive around and drop into any event you like, and it’s nice to have some objectives. The modification of your cars is also a nice novelty, but can be quite costly in the beginning, and you must install pursuit tech on every individual car. Overall, it’s a good, fun game to play so far, and I look forward to playing it to relax over the Christmas holidays.

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November Wishlist

November is a month full of action in terms of game releases, and there’s three big games that I’ve been wanting for a long time. The wait will soon be over, and this is what I want to get my hands on this month.

Watch Dogs

I’ve been excited about this ever since I saw the first trailer. I love the idea of holding so much power in your hand, that you can shut down an entire power grid. It looks to be an excellent statement on the current technological state of the world, and I can’t wait to start hacking my way into people’s lives, and shutting down street lights to make my quick escape. EDIT: At the point of me writing this post, the game was coming out in November. It has not been postponed until March/April.

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Assassins Creed IV: Black Flag

Assassins Creed III was terrible. There, I said it. I found it to be perpetually dull, and I have no desire to go back to it so I can finish it. However, Assassins Creed IV takes one of the good parts of Assassins Creed III and makes it a focal point of the game. I don’t think any character will ever compare to Ezio, but Kenway looks like he could be a likable pirate. I won’t give up in the series just yet, but ACIV has a lot to prove.

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Need for Speed Rivals

Anything is better than the poor offering that was the most recent Most Wanted game. It had a terrible multiplayer, and all the cars were unlocked from the beginning so it lacked challenge. I love Hot Pursuit, so Rivals looks to please that part of me that lusts for a similar concept. Recently announced was the addition of undercover cops as well, which will add an interesting dynamic when playing. I just want to race super cars around epic tracks, and I welcome the carnage of trying to take down the cops so I can win the race. I foresee many hours of multiplayer with the man on this one, and I seriously cannot wait.

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EA E3 2013 Live Blog

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The Good

  • Interesting montage of games from EA to start – Plants VS Zombies, Battlefield, Dragon Age etc
  • 11 games to be presented
  • Starting with Plants VS Zombies Garden Warfare – Nice light-hearted way to open – Coming to Xbox One, then to Xbox 360
  • Live action demo showing a new 3D animation style TPS to the PVZ franchise, showcasing some funny characters and general chaos.
  • Peggle 2 coming from Popcap.
  • Titanfall shown again – Already shown at Microsoft conference, hopefully more about it here – More talks from devs and producers, talking about multiplayer.
  • New game from DICE – Star Wars Battlefront
  • Need for Speed Rivals – Very excited about this one – All Drive new feature – Destroys the line between single player and multiplayer apparently.
  • Live demo showcasing single player as cop and racer – Looks beautiful, with realtime weather changes?
  • Seamless change between single player, multiplayer and whether you’re playing as a cop or a racer.
  • Dragon Age Inquisition up next.
  • Explore a vast open world which changes the story, and the world around you.
  • Some new characters, and some old ones.
  • Morrigan at the end of the trailer – Looks very epic, finger crossed it doesn’t suffer from the third in the series syndrome.
  • More Battlefield 4 – Already seen at Microsoft conference, hopefully a bit more detail and gameplay – Commander mode – live demo with 64 players on stage – Very impressive live showcase.
  • Mirrors Edge 2 – Brand new trailer, looks far more polished than the original, just as stunning and futuristic.

The Bad

  • EA Sports – All look very stunning, personally couldn’t care less – Powered by EA Sports Ignite – NBA Live 14 for PS4 and Xbox One.
  • BounceTek? I’m sorry, I just can’t get excited.
  • Madden NFL 25 – More fluid movements – Impressive, but not for me.
  • Drake – I do not care – Why is he promoting Fifa? No. Unnecessary celebrity.
  • Wrestling, UFC – More sports personalities – More realistic wrestling? Meh – Sorry, boxing, same difference.

The Not So Sure

  • Need for Speed movie? Unsure if want. – Behind the scenes shots of NFS movie.
  • Seems like Commander mode in multiplayer is just a single player gameplay trait, barely adapted for MP in BF4.