Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. A fantastic driving game. It has style, variety and a solid ride with hours of action driving like a freaking maniac on the streets of Bay View.
  2. Everything "NFSU" was and more. Racing is now more realistic and the freedom to cruise the city and choose your events is an awesome improvement.
  3. It's simply a fantastic sequel to an already good game.
  4. 91
    An impressive, and more importantly, fun game that overcomes its faults with depth, breadth, and variety.
  5. NFS Underground 2 does one more thing exceptionally well; give the gamer plenty of bang for their buck. If 8 different game play modes wasn’t enough; Circuit, Drag, Drift, Sprint, Street X, Downhill Drift, Outrun, and Underground Racing League, you have a story mode that will give gamers over 40 hours of racing joy.
  6. Its immense thrills and spills through the open-ended city of Bayview is exhilarating, and the culture that is emerging is created in the game to great effect.
  7. The world is elaborate, the sense of speed is dizzying, and the customization could cost you a job or a girlfriend. But you'll still have Brooke to keep you company.
  8. 90
    EA's latest in the fledgeling spin-off series is another solid entry, even if it's not quite as polished as its predecessor.
  9. Does everything that the first one did except bigger and better!
  10. Ranks among the most entertaining games I've played in a while. [Apr 2005, p.85]
  11. This has quickly become my favourite and most often played game - and considering my statement a few months back that "I don't play driving games," that alone should tell you all you need to know about this outstanding racer.
  12. One of the best arcade racing games ever. The quantity and quality of the options available to you, the level design and the freedom of movement, the cars and their handling through traffic, the details, all these make NFS: U2 a winner.
  13. If EA can work in some car damage, a hard-core physics option, and some proper cockpit views for the next chapter, this franchise will leap into a league of its own. [Feb 2005, p.54]
  14. A worthy addition to the series, providing a much more interesting nonlinear style of play. The only major problem that seems to surface is the fact you will need to devote quite some time and mental energy to complete this game, and often the gameplay just gets too stale in the time needed to even complete just a few races in one sitting.
  15. 85
    The most important factor, outweighing most of its problems, is the intelligent layout. It's just about the right size, big enough to be varied and small enough to keep things close together, and packs in about all the different types of terrain you'd like.
  16. For an arcade game, it's even surprisingly playable with a steering wheel, with near misses causing no small amount of amateurish flinching. If you can't afford to attach largely pointless gadgets to your otherwise moribund vehicle, this is the next best thing. [PC Zone]
  17. In a gaming season plagued by same-old-same-old sequels, Need for Speed Underground 2 is a rare title that changes up the formula and still manages to stay fun. When you combine its lasting pick up appeal with a surprisingly well thought out campaign mode, you have a racing game that provides depth without sacrificing the over the top action of an arcade game.
  18. The fact that there's sod-all to do in the city apart from racing and upgrading means that it soon becomes little more than a glorified menu screen; the chance to pull a burnout in front of a crowd would make it more involving. [Christmas 2004, p.106]
  19. The courses in this game are just as much the stars as the cars. The dazzling downtown locations are massive, dominated by skyscrapers whose light bathes the streets in a radiant glow.
  20. The cars sound great, and have more of an individual roar than they did in the first game, which racing aficionados will no doubt appreciate.
  21. The original NFSU's city was a little repetitive, but now IT'S broken up into five distinct neighbourhoods, each is suitably spectacular. Most of the time you fly through these districts so quickly that everything becomes one big neon blur, but it's worth slowing down to soak up the sights.
  22. 80
    Naturally the pimping side of things have been expanded to a maddeningly complete degree.
  23. On the whole we admire what NFSU2 has brought to the table in terms of customisations and we’re even swayed by the glitzy graphics and excellent audio. It’s just a shame that the racing isn’t quite as exciting.
  24. Does a pretty good job capturing the tuner scene with fast races and flashy cars. However, some lingering A.I. issues and the excessive time it takes just to get where you need to go keeps this ride from shifting to fifth.
  25. Almost everything that has been added to this year's game detracts from the overall experience. Once you're in and racing and customizing your cars, it's a lot of fun, but there are too many obstacles standing between you and the best parts of the game.
  26. But strip away the culture it’s trying so very hard to win over and there’s a game that’s been hastily, and sparsely, updated, and was beaten to death in the womb by "Burnout 3" months ago. Just like 20” rims and a spoiler on a 1984 Volvo, this game may turn heads, but where it counts most it’s a phoney.
  27. There's plenty of depth, just not enough twists and turns not involving the streets you're tarring. [March 2005, p.82]
  28. Unfortunately, the extras and vehicle customisation can’t change the fact that the actual racing feels very average. The tracks seem to be more winding than the last game, which detracts from the feeling of speed, and the handling feels very sloppy when compared to other recent games in the genre. [Christmas 2004, p.117]
  29. 60
    There’s something almost absurd about paying for a game that inundates you with a constant stream of ads.
  30. The handling hasn’t evolved and a year on, with the masking novelty of the game’s tuning aspects worn off, it’s disappointingly limited and remote. And despite the increased choice and plot introduction the whole exercise can often feel soulless. [Christmas 2004, p.60]
  31. Not as much much fun as EA's other recent speed merchant "Burnout 3," but if getting under the hood to tinker with motors is your thing, this could be the one for you.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 308 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 39
  2. Negative: 4 out of 39
  1. DionisB
    Mar 30, 2008
    Seriously, I don't understand how some people think. How can you compare NFSU2 with any other so called ''racing Seriously, I don't understand how some people think. How can you compare NFSU2 with any other so called ''racing game''. First I dont't even think Burnout should be called a racing game, cause all the game is about is crash you car to the fullest. This game otherwise is terribly good game, just the feel of driving illegal street racing makes you play it more. Good music, damn good graphics for a game made 2004 and the best underground racing game to this day. Prostreet and Carbon was a disapointment but this classic brings you hope back that EA will ''probably'' make an new and better NFS than ever. Full Review »
  2. RiseFall
    Dec 22, 2004
    I can't play to racing games WITHOUT cars damage.
  3. Sep 22, 2014
    A nice game of series Need for Speed. It's a good game, I really do not what to say. Ok .. the truth is that after a while ...boring. MusicA nice game of series Need for Speed. It's a good game, I really do not what to say. Ok .. the truth is that after a while ...boring. Music and items in the game are ok. Full Review »