Need for Speed: ProStreet - hands-on

Oct 22, 2007

Mirroring Formula One’s Ferrari-McLaren alledge-a-thon, this year EA Black Box have clearly helped themselves to an eyeful of the blueprints belonging to traditionally serious racers such as Forza. For starters, we’re off the streets and into the pit lanes of numerous real-world race tracks. According to the game’s producer, this reflects where the street racing culture is heading.

Apparently bored with having to endure fifteen-minute police chases every time they want an innocent high-speed street race, our racers have fled to the professional circuits, where they can pursue their hobby. This doesn’t make too much of a difference to the gameplay - some of the duller circuits have been sexed-up to bring them in line with the curvy wonders we’ve played in Need For Speed games past. But there’s another change that does change the way you approach the game. Significantly so, in fact.

As part of what seems to be a drive to transfer the Need for Speed series from its slot as an arcade racer into more of a simulation, ProStreet features full-damage modeling. So, instead of ricocheting off walls, your car will scrape, contort and disintegrate upon coming into contact with part of the environment. Good?

Well, kinda. It felt a bit weird to be drifting around the courses in time-honoured fashion, only to be knocked out of the race instantly because our wheel fell off in a collision with an inconveniently-placed cactus. But then, it’s only natural for a change like this to take time to get used to.


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