Review: Need for Speed Hot Pursuit, by Electronic Arts
Need for Speed Hot Pursuit HD, by Electronic Arts
• Can play as the cop or the bad guy
• Goes beyond a simple racing game
• Game seems to crash frequently
• Graphics seems slightly under par
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit is a slightly different EA racing game. Rather than just compete against other cars in various racing scenarios, in this game you can choose to either be a speeding racer trying to avoid police capture, or you can be the police trying to capture a speeding car. There are various racing elements, and some of the stages are simply a race to see how you stack up, but many of the stages have specific scenarios or goal. I was choosing to play as the police, so in the very first scenario I had to find a way to disable/bring down a speeding motorist using road blocks as well as trying to tap the car from the rear.
This new added element to the gameplay make the game much more interesting that a straightforward racing game. Yes, the racing elements are still there, but now there is an added sense of urgency or purpose – you aren’t just trying to come in first place in a race. Like the other Need for Speed games, the graphics are very nice, although they don’t seem to be as smooth or clear as other NFS racing games. With that said, when you are playing the scenery and cars really seem to come to life. I have read that other people have problems with screen stutter or jumping frames, but I haven’t experienced any of that. And like other racing games, the controls are easy. Tilt the iPad to turn, tap on the left for brakes. You can choose to have auto-acceleration turned on, or have a manual accelerate option. Auto-acceleration is nice, because you may have to be using your right hand for other functions – like releasing spike strips, setting up road blocks, even releasing an EMP to disable another car. You also can use the screen to trigger the nitro speed boost or use the 180 degree hand brake turn (nice for a quick turn to pursue a car!).
As you proceed through various stages, you build up money for achieving various results (even small things like taking a curve smoothly) that you can use to get new cars and such. Some cars are unlocked as a police man, others are unlocked as a speeder, so you need to play both modes to fully unlock everything.
The biggest issue I had with the game is that it would seemingly crash on a regular basis. I would start the game up, and at some point it would just shut down again. I am not sure if it is due to my iPad in particular (jailbroken) or if others have experienced this as well. It would happen at various times – starting the game, at the menu screen, starting a race, seemingly any time was potentially vulnerable. Given the relatively long boot up screen, this got to be quite annoying when I was playing.
All in all, this is a fun, fast paced take on the racing genre. By adding the element of cops/speeders to the game, it brings a whole new level of excitement. While the graphics aren’t as stunning as some racing games, they are still very nice and make the game enjoyable. For $9.99, I recommend that people who like the Need for Speed franchise, or those who just want to try a different take on a racing game, give it a shot. Four out of five stars.
* = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
*** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
**** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.
Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating. Please comment on these reviews. If you own the app, tell me what your opinion is. If the review prompted you to buy (or not buy) the app, let me know why. If you want more information about the app, go ahead and ask.