Friday, November 04, 2005

Underground Racing

Need for Speed Underground is one of the funnest racing games I have ever played. In fact, the only close rivals I have seen so far are the sequels, Need for Speed Underground 2 and Need for Speed Most Wanted.

To start with, the graphics are absolutely stunning. The graphics engine has been so finely tuned that thousands of shiny surfaces can be drawn in real-time on my 256 RAM 2.2 Ghz laptop. Tons of awesome smoke and flame effects show up during the game as well, creating a truly spectacular playing world to race in.

The sounds are awesome too. Skids, squeaks, nitro, shifting, crashing, it's all there; and it combines with the graphics to create an incredibly immersive gaming environment. Some sounds can hardly be noticed, but help to create a great feeling of being involved, sucking the gamer into the monitor and putting him behind the driver's seat.

The controls are very intuitive in their default setting, and mapped to your playing style it almost feels as if they don't exist at all, and everything comes naturally and fluidly while playing the game. Combine this with the graphics and sounds I told you of, and it's hard to tell where reality ends and fantasy begins.

The physics engine is top-knotch. Many games in the series have allowed EA to refine their physics algorithms to the point where everything works so well it's hard to steer badly or accelerate at the wrong time; that's how real it feels. I'm not sure how much better it has gotten in NFSU2 or NFSMW, but I'm sure it couldn't have gotten much better than this.

All the things I just mentioned would be totally worthless if it wasn't for the great gameplay. Zipping around at night, winning money to buy parts, earning style to unlock parts and increase your multiplier, and using nitro to blast into first at the last second are all thrilling features that truly make this game a must-play.

Not much of a story however. You're a new guy in town, and you have to prove your guts and skill, and earn respect from the veteran streetracers of the area.

Other than that, this game rocks. It is one of only three games that have a shortcut on my desktop.



Blogger Mr. Levingston said...

and the other 2 are??

I only have 2 games on mine.

Halo and Red Alert 2: Yuri's Revenge

Saturday, November 05, 2005 4:07:00 PM PST  

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