Just last week, mega publisher EA gave us our very first taste of Need for Speed Unbound. Whatever your take on the unique art style chosen by developers Criterion and Codemasters, it certain stands out from the crowd.
The animation style is definitely slick, with buzzing neon lights and cartoonish characters giving Unbound a distinctly arcade-like feel. The response to this overtly stylised design choice has been mostly positive, despite having seen only a little in game footage. That changed today, with EA dropping a load more gameplay for us to drool over.
You can check the white-knuckle on-road action, customisation options and more for yourself in the below video.
In a world of near real-life racing simulations, this is a breath of fresh air in an increasingly monotone landscape. Make no mistake, this is an arcade racer, through and through. But of course, diversity in the face of monotony will always ruffle feathers. But for the naysayers out there, those animated “flourishes” can be turned off at will. This reverts Unbound to a more traditional looking Need for Speed game.
Why anyone would do this, however, remains a mystery. But the options there, at least.
Need to know more? Here are Need for Speed Unbound’s key features…
“Race against time, outsmart the cops, and take on weekly qualifiers to reach The Grand, Lakeshore’s ultimate street racing challenge. Pack your garage with precision-tuned, custom rides and light up the streets with your style and a vibrant global soundtrack that bumps in every corner of the world.”
The World is Your Canvas
Graffiti comes to life with an all-new, unique visual style that blends elements of the freshest street art with the most realistic looking cars in Need for Speed history. Access a new toolkit of high-energy visual and sound effects to express your driving skills, including Burst Nitrous, a new boost tactic that delivers a dizzying rush of speed.
Race to the Top
To get to the top, you gotta take risks. Choose how and when to put it all on the line, pulling huge drifts, outdriving the cops, or placing side bets with your own earnings against rival racers. Time is money, so find the fastest way to earn enough cash to enter the weekly qualifiers and make it to Lakeshore’s ultimate race, The Grand.
Run these Streets
The more you race, the more you build heat. While the cops pile on the pressure, you make tactical decisions using new escape mechanics. Do you outrun the cops, battle them head on, or hide out in Lakeshore’s underground? Run these streets and you’ll reap the rewards.
Show off the latest fits and express yourself through your ride with the cleanest tags and driving effects to represent your personal style. Transform your car with unique wraps and cutaways, and stunt on the competition with customizable win poses.
Need for Speed Unbound drifts onto PC, Xbox Series X/S, and PS5 on December 2.
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Olly S, July 2020