The Evolution of Need for Speed Games (1994-2020)

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Need for Speed ​​is an arcade racing game that everyone has heard of or played. NFS games have been around for a long time and since then there have been improvements to every game released under the Need for Speed ​​franchise. Looking ahead to how the next game in the franchise, titled Need for Speed: Unbound, is set to release on December 2 this year, we take a look at the top 10 Need for Speed ​​games you should play if you like racing games.

The best need for speed games.

Before starting this list, the games on this list have been mentioned in no particular order. This is simply a list of the must-have games in the Need for Speed ​​franchise.

Need for Speed: Most Wanted (2005)

Whenever you talk about Need for Speed ​​games, there is one game that always comes to mind, the original NFS Most Wanted game. Sure, it’s a pretty old game at this point, but the nostalgia for the game is pretty high. The game has 15 racers that you have to defeat. There are different types of main events and missions that you need to complete in order to win and eventually win your opponent’s car.

The BMW M3 is one of the most popular cars in the Need for Speed ​​franchise. It is the same car that Razer takes from you and to get it back you will have to defeat it. But you also have to be aware of the police who will always be behind you. Every time your wanted level increases, the police launch tougher police forces trying to take you down. If you haven’t played this game yet, it’s time for you to give it a try and see what it’s all about.

  • Release date: November 11, 2005
  • Plataformas PC, PS2, Xbox, Xbox 360, PSP, Nintendo DS, Nintendo Gameboy Advance

Need for Speed ​​II SE

Let’s go back to the Need for Speed ​​games of the late 90s. Need for Speed ​​II SE was one of the few games that were played by a lot of people. It could even be said that it was the first Need for Speed ​​game from which users started to enjoy NFS games. The graphics of the games for the time were quite nice. You can choose to play single-player, multiplayer, or even split-screen.

The game also features a good number of cars and plenty of tracks that you can race on. Of course, there were also some cars and tracks that you could unlock using cheat codes. The game was simple and easy to play. No paywalls or microtransactions. If you haven’t played this one, you can also check out the game on one of the many abandonware websites you can download the game from.

  • Release Date: March 31, 1997
  • Platforms: PC

Need for Speed: Most Wanted 2012

The new Most Wanted game did not look like what players expected. It had a completely different approach and was quite a departure from the original Most Wanted game. However, the game was quite interesting because you always had the blacklist ranking that you could race against and eventually win their car and be the best racer on the market. In terms of graphics, they were quite good, the roads and cities looked more realistic, and the sounds of the cars felt quite real.

Many gamers called 2012 Most Wanted a car collecting simulator. Simply because finding cars is easier, and more importantly, it is very easy to switch between the current car and the car you just saw in a particular place. When it comes to upgrading vehicles, the options are very limited. There are occasional police chases that will take place at certain events and races.

  • Release date: November 30, 2012
  • Plataformas: Android, iOS, PS3, Xbox 360, PC, PS Vita, Kindle Fire, Nintendo Wii U

Need for speed: running

The Run, much like 2012’s Most Wanted, was a completely different take on the NFS franchise. You see, The Run was nothing like a classic Need for Speed ​​game. It was a game that had a story and you were kind of limited to doing things other than participating in the events of the story. Free roaming was never an option at The Run. The Run is a great race where more than 100 runners run between San Francisco and New York.

During this great illegal race, you will find a series of mini-races and events that you must participate in progress. You can also run in different weather conditions, including day and night. Of course, there is the multiplayer mode where you can play and compete with your friends online. The entire game can be completed in a single session.

  • Release date: November 15, 2011
  • Plataformas: PC, Xbox 360, PS3, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo 3DS

Need for Speed: encubierto

Need for Speed ​​Undercover received a lot of mixed reactions. The plot of the game was that while you are taking part in various races, your job is also to eliminate various international criminals. Apart from taking down the criminals, you will also have to fight against the cops who will always be there trying to take you down.

For most players, NFS Undercover was more of a repetitive game than got repetitive and boring. The graphics were average even at the time of its release. The game is best viewed on portable devices. It’s still a good game if you just want to drive and play some races.

  • Release date: November 18, 2008
  • Plataformas: PC, PS2, PS3, PSP, Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, Android, iOS, Blackberry, Symbian, Windows Phone webOS

need for speed underground 2

It was about the Need for Speed ​​games that got a lot of people into customization. Underground 2 had many (for its time) visual and performance enhancements to make your car stand out and be the fastest on the market. In Underground 2, you will be able to participate in races anywhere and anytime. Since upgrades and customization were the focus of the game, you will be able to find various shops that you can visit to improve your vehicle.

Another cool feature of NFS Underground 2 is that players can freely move around the map. You can also move freely and compete with your friends, thanks to the online multiplayer mode.

  • Release date: October 4, 2004
  • Plataformas: GameCube, PS2, Xbox, PC, Gameboy Advance

Need for Speed: heat

One of the newcomers to the Need for Speed ​​franchise is Heat. This time the game focuses more on participating in races and improving your cars. You can choose between day and night modes. During the day you can participate in races and if you win you will earn money that will help you improve your rides. Meanwhile, at night the races become more difficult as you have the police behind you most of the time. This is also when your reputation level increases.


Need for Speed: Heat has a huge list of cars that you can unlock and purchase as you rank up in the game. There is also a multiplayer mode where you can join a party with other random people online or with your friends. The game has a very neon vibe that is best seen at night.

  • Release date: November 8, 2019
  • Plataformas: PS4, Xbox One, PC

Need for Speed: Carbon

If you like old-school Need for Speed ​​games, NFS Carbon is one of the games you have to try. The game follows NFS Most Wanted where you take part in illegal street racing and your goal is to be the best in town. You will race against different crews and then choose to represent Tuner, Muscle, or Sports class cars. You can of course customize your car’s performance and visuals. Carbon introduced new Canyon Duel and Drift racing modes to the game.

  • Release date: October 30, 2006
  • Plataformas: PC, macOS, PS2, PS3, PSP, Xbox, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, GameCube, GameBoy Advance, Nintendo DS

Need for Speed: return on investment

When NFS Payback was announced, people weren’t happy with the direction it was taking. Mainly because it just moved away from what most NFS games tend to be. In Payback, you play as three different characters, each good at a particular style of running. The game has an interesting story, but when it came to upgrading your vehicle, it required you to work harder and sometimes even repeat a series of races just to upgrade and unlock performance parts.

In terms of graphics, Payback has good graphics and looks good in 2022. Payback has a lot of fun drift challenges that you can complete, thanks to the beautiful curvy roads that are available in abundance.

  • Release date: November 10, 2017
  • Plataformas: PC, PS4, Xbox One

need for speed 2015

Need for Speed ​​2015 is a good overall game that lacks graphics and even physical management. Many people would easily say that NFS 2015 is better than Payback, and indeed it is. For starters, it has appropriate NFS-style races and events to take part in, as well as car customization options. However, you can improve Need for Speed ​​2015 using mods like Unite Mod which improves the game by miles.

  • Release date: November 3, 2015
  • Plataforma: PC, PS4, Xbox One

final thoughts

This concludes the list of the best Need for Speed ​​games to play. While there may be some games that we wouldn’t have added to the list, you can always comment on which NFS game you think should have been on the list. Need for Speed ​​No Limits is a mobile game that not everyone likes for various reasons. With a new Need for Speed ​​release in December, what do you think is the best Need for Speed ​​game of all time? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.


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