SPOnG can today exclusively blow the lid on Electronic Arts’ next Need for Speed game, detailing the company’s thinking on the leading franchise update for the first time.
The series will ditch the Underground moniker, with the new game carrying the title Need for Speed: Most Wanted. The information, leaked to us last week, states that the multi-platform offering will ship across the world in late 2005.
Most Wanted will be available for Xbox 2, Xbox, PlayStation 2, GameCube, PC, PSP and “Game Boy Advance or Nintendo DS.” A pleasant added value news snippet details a “…simultaneous ship, with the western Xbox2 platform", which indicates a late 2005 release for Xbox2 too. Though whether the machine will go under the ‘Xbox2’ name is unclear. But the launch period, as dated by the world’s leading third-party publisher, can now be pencilled in.
The picture we get is of a game that is not really too different from the Underground duo, with one key difference: Most Wanted takes the series back to its roots, with police chases making up the body of the gameplay. We expect the game to feature a much greater emphasis on movie style police getaway missions, in levels specifically designed to emphasise this aspect of the game, with gameplay focussing on eluding police pursuit vehicles. The game will also feature other multiple action modes such as race, circuit, sprint and knockout.
There will also also be a rap-sheet system, in which a player’s notoriety is upped by performing more dangerous manoeuvres in the view of following police.
Four distinct 'regions' will be offered, along with real time weather and an evolving environment. There will be no racing during the night-time, with all the action taking place between sun up and sunset.
Online play will be included with what is described as a ‘similar feature set to NFSU2’ though this time, world-wide play will be included with no conflict between the North American and European versions.
Around 100 motors will be on offer. ‘Asian import (tuners), exotics, American muscle and Euro imports,” as detailed by EA.
Oh, one more thing! Burnout 4 is slated for Xbox 2 launch.
We’ll post screens when they become available.