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Mixed or average reviews- based on 425 Ratings

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  1. Dec 18, 2012
    I find a lot of you being blatant jerks and giving the game a score of 0 or 1. I would think anyone with a rational bone in their body would use these low scores for their intended purpose, which is to give something that is such a complete abomination that it is broken.... un-playable. Have some professionalism people!
    It seems like most of the complaints are stating that you played the
    game for 30 minutes, maybe an hour ( Personally I always know every last detail there is to know about every last game I buy after 10 minutes of game play, so I don't know what is wrong with you all) and complain about how the game is not a real NFS title.... how it is the death of the franchise... How Criterion ruined Need For Speed. Well it was stated months ago in every major published preview of the game that Criterion was the Developer (Shocker number one for you all I know) and that the title would follow the same style of game play as Criterion's "Burnout Paradise" (Shocker number two). So It was clearly said BY EA that the game would be a sort of mash up of Need For Speed: Most wanted, and Criterion's Burnout Paradise.... Hence the title: "Need For Speed: Most Wanted - a Criterion game". Wow so now that you dingbats with the 0's and 1's have no excuse... You officially know that this game was developed by Criterion with burnout paradise in mind as a model, and I think they did a DAMN GOOD JOB!
    The game is set in a gorgeous open world, the selection of cars is nothing short of awesome, the soundtrack is stellar, and the game play is fantastic.
    One aspect I found to be particularly cool was that you had the option to compete in different style-race events catered to each individual car, which would earn you speed points advancing you closer to the coveted number 1 most wanted spot, and earn you upgrades such as specialized tires, nitro boost, better chassis and gearbox layouts, ect.. But you have a virtual bevy of other options to earn points. These include the obvious such as catching air and smashing through billboards much like in Burnout Paradise, deliberately crashing into cops and starting chases, finding new cars, driving past speed cameras in excess of the posted speed and more... Aside from this you also earn points from reaching certain milestones such as drifting certain distances, driving for set amounts of time (with different point scales for driving on the correct side of the road, and driving into oncoming traffic) and many other activities that tend to just happen from driving each car anyway.
    The Graphics and sound are just PHENOMENAL, The cars sound as close as can be to their actual counterparts in reality (I know because I watch A LOT of "Top Gear" UK), the soundtrack is one that you would come to expect from an EA title except a lot better than usual, the day to night cycles and weather effects are so realistic that as in real life they just blend into the greater world as something that is just happening (not to mention that I found the wet ground/ spray from driving to be absolutely life-like). The cars pick up dirt, or mud if driving after poor weather conditions, and as with all of the effects in the game this looks fantastic. There are many different parts to this open world leaving something for everyone.... Crazy architecture for the stunt driver, bumpy dirt trails for the rally driver, Winding mountain roads for the initial-d loving toge drivers, freeway systems for pedal to the metal top-speed drivers, and of course... the city itself for the good old fashioned track racers (I found many hours wasted developing my own routes through the city, which helped me earn milestones in each different car i used. Now here is where we get to the major parts of this game that prevented it from earning a higher score in my book. First and by far the worst is the multiplayer. It is great racing around and making friends who's high scores are then posted into the speed cameras, billboards ect. in your city, meaning you can beat their scores in single player. This makes for some fun competition amongst friends. This is all well and good but the multiplayer games are horribly difficult to find out what you are supposed to be doing, and sometimes when you do find out the challenge is so stupid that it might prompt some to leave the game then and there. I found myself spending so much of the time trying to figure out what to do that in many cases I had been eliminated before having a chance to even compete. Another major flaw is the inability to select a manual transmission. I do not know what the developers were thinking and I put it off as the game being released pre-maturely in order to fit into the holiday sales period. If this is the case it was a huge mistake on the part of EA as most of the people I have talked to playing this game find this to be a major flaw in an otherwise great game. All and all I would recommend this title to any fan of arcade style racers
  2. Dec 22, 2012
    I haven't found myself frustrated at a NFS game since Prostreet. Trying to mash Burnout mechanics into the game was a **** move and the cam that happens every single time you even touch something is frankly irritating. The focus on the "social" aspect in the game has ruined it. I don't want to compare stupid times with friends, I just want to race clean races without having to restart every event 20 times.

    You can say I suck at the game but I don't remember having this problem with previous titles in the franchise. So far I've spent about 2 hours on it and having to change cars all the time and repeating events in all of them are frankly mind boggling. Climbing the Most Wanted list does not feel like a significant achievement at all.

    Glad I borrowed it from a friend instead of buying this piece of ****
  3. Dec 25, 2012
    Crazy how real racing enthusiast are being criticized because they want "manual transmission" option... the mental capacity required for this game is fit for a 9 year old... with all due respect, no story, few options and the inability to simply choose whether I want manual or automatic is atrocious. On a good note, the graphics are about the best I've seen in any NFS games.
  4. Dec 27, 2012
    Bah This game is heavily Repetitive compared to the 2005 Most wanted. No story which makes the racing pointless. After beating the most wanted which was really easy, The game feels really empty and doesn't really reward much. The multiplayer is quite repetitive as well.
  5. Dec 30, 2012
    This is a sublime street racing game, one of the best of it's kind. The autolog is more innovative than you may realise and allows fluid transitions between different cars and locations (races).

    The only truly frustrating aspect is the way DLC content is forced into the game itself. You see a new car-jack spot and head over to claim your new car only to be taken to the in-game store
    to buy the right to use the content. DLC is here and can actually be used to breathe new life into titles but to have it severely impact on the fluidity of the game unless you pay for it is a real let down. Expand
  6. Dec 31, 2012
    This game is awesome! It's the best racing game I've ever played, but being that it was made by Criterion, it was far more like Burnout. I like Burnout way more than Need for Speed, so I didn't mind playing what, essentially, is a Burnout game with the Need for Speed name. They kept some elements of customization, but this game a lot more fun and a lot less difficult than other Need for Speed games. Expand
  7. Jan 17, 2013
    I am very disapointed in this game and its developers. I played it 5 min and got shocked by a for this time poor graphic, a unrealistic steering which makes you think that there is somebody else steering your car while you drive, just to make you mad.
    No customization, just a crappy bumper few, no manual transmission, no tuning, no making money, no money needed at all for some strange
    reason. Its all together a big idiotic dissapointment and not worth it 5 $. Why in hell did i buy this? Expand
  8. Jan 20, 2013
    Oh, by the way, this game may give you all the cars instead of making you buy them with money you win from races, but the "scavenger hunt" to look for and find the cars is a whole new level of fun.
  9. Jan 22, 2013
    reguardless of it's shortcomings... this game is fun and by far the best arcade racer on the major consoles right now. it's just fun...and that is why you should play a game. because it is fun. the added features are amazing graphics and great sound. huge open worlds and destruction on cars.
    i give it a 9.0 from a burnout fan and a nfs fan... i like this joint project between the two
    company's. i think they did a great job. Expand
  10. Jan 23, 2013
    I like how this need for speed game is focused on the open map. Unlike recent need for speed games. You don't have to play races unless you want too. You can get cars at any time, by going around and finding them. Which I love. There is lots of places to visit, the cops are good. I enjoy this game.
  11. Feb 6, 2013
    This game is good i admit, but when i play online and say a host leaves the game, it sometimes freezes my Ps3, so i turn my console off after a while of waiting for it to un-freeze. Then i go back into the game and my Single player has been reset, this has happened to me twice and and it's really annoying, does anyone have any ideas how to stop this from happening?
  12. Apr 2, 2013
    Need for Speed is back to its core, or is it?

    I have been a long time fan of the Need for Speed Franchise but have been disappointed in the series in the past few years. The Run was shameful, ProStreet was abysmal, Undercover was just a Most Wanted Rip off. Although Hot Pursuit and Most Wanted have been redeeming and funnily enough made by the same developers.

    Gameplay 9/10 Action
    packed, Cinematic police chase and crazily fast races. All this makes Most Wanted one of my favourite racers this generation. If you've ever played Burnout Paradise, you'll instantly be able to see the comparison between the two. The Races can get a little repetitive at points and you only have 5 races per car or up to 4 extra with the DLC but you could easily get lost driving around the city.

    Story 0/10 No Narrative, Just Takedown the Most Wanted to be the Most Wanted... Simple.

    Presentation 8/10 I do love the new way the things are presented in the game (which are also featured in Metal Gear Rising), from race starts to scores everything is easily visible and clear. Race checkpoints and finish lines can be seen above the buildings in the distance and the scores are tagged onto the car like little price tags. Its brilliant and Minimalistic.

    DLC 6/10 The DLC for this game is quite good, the new terminal brings in a whole new section into the game... although its just an airstrip with a few jumps it does make for some fun races and jumps as well as a good place to set some top speeds. The Pricing of the Packs are £7.99 each or £20 for the bundle. Getting the bundle is worthwhile as you get a bunch of new mods and cars, new and old. I personally love the Spyder & the James Bond DB. I wasn't a fan of the pricing though.

    Overall 9/10 Brilliant game which has brought the need for speed series back to its roots, although the customisation is limited and it feels alot like Burnout Paradise 2. It separates itself from that shadow and brings its own unique content. The Graphics of the game set it apart from things like GT5, the Lighting under the wheels when the tires are blown are amazing at nighttime making it seem like fire from under the car.

    I really enjoyed this game and recommend you buy the game, aswell as the DLC bundle!
  13. Mar 25, 2013
    Absolutely rubbish. No vehicle customization, terrible game-engine, no realism whatsoever, over saturated filter... Criterion has ruined it and EA is stupid for letting them.
  14. Apr 3, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I get myself into a chase by cop, I've found it pretty much impossible, I get out of the circle of sight, but I don't enter Cooldown?
    I've tried running on the highway, no good tip toeing around the construction area, no good hanging around a repair station, turn off engine.... no good!!

    IF I do ever manage to break sight of the cops, they have such a wide area of sight I'm finding it impossible to "hide". There also seems to be an infinite number of cops around?!

    Please tell me I'm doing something wrong as this is not fun at all
  15. May 1, 2013
    Best NFS game yet races are a good challenge and the graphics are amazing when it comes to upgrading your car there is not a lot of options but the races are that good you don't miss it. Multiplayer is also amazing overall the best arcade racer money can buy.
  16. Oct 14, 2013
    I thoroughly enjoy this game. Once I got a hang of the reward and open world mechanics I found it immensely satisfying to gather the points needed to unlock the next Most Wanted challenge. The cars really have different handling, and the power-ups like different gear ratios that you unlock by winning races have a huge impact on them. The graphics are impressive, the controls feel responsive and the engines roar when attached to a stereo. What I find somewhat frustrating is the amount of luck involved sometimes: The police and traffic appear somewhat randomly, and if you're out of luck you'll crash without any chance of avoiding it shortly before the end of a 5 minute race. The uncertainty does add some additional thrill on the other hand. Also, the rubber-band is somewhat annoying. While it is very hard to win a race when you accidentally crash more than a 2-3 times, opponents are always close behind you even if you do a perfect display and should be way out front, so any mistake leads to a lost race. What I also found annoying is the aggressive promotion of DLC-stuff. It is in all the regular menus and the DLC-cars can be found around town just like the other ones, just until you approach them to switch and see a "Hit Button to go to store" instead of "to switch cars". All in all a very fun arcade racing game. Expand
  17. Aug 4, 2013
    Why zero? Because the cars are unresponsive; there is no merit to be found in a racing game where steering is so slow. Graphics and sound, customisation, balance, progression and challenge these all hinge on being able to control the action, and in NFS: MW this is impossible.
  18. Jul 5, 2013
    i give a 2 for the graphism because the rest is a fake burnout style. horrible gameplay, horrible police car
    better to pay 5e for burnout paradise than this awful game
  19. Jul 22, 2013
    I have owned and played every NFS game since NFS 2 SE for PC, and I'm probably the biggest racing-junkie out there. I don't come out and write reviews too often, but this game really made me want to come out and express my displeasure.

    When I first heard about Criterion making a "sequel" to the original Need For Speed Most Wanted, I was extremely excited. Criterion made Burnout Paradise
    (Once of the funnest racing games this generation), Need For Speed Hot Pursuit (Another great game), and here they are making the long awaited sequel that fans have been begging for YEARS (Youtube, Facebook. Every video fan asked for a new NFS MW)

    Boy, they really let all of them down.

    Of course, no one knew any better before it came out. Positive reviews were coming out a few days before launch, and I would even check Google news every few hours for any new info on it. I pre-ordered the Limited Edition for $60.

    It came in 2 days after launch, and I immediately put it in. And was immediately disappointed.

    There are examples of the devs being CHEAP everywhere you look. There are only 2 car views (compared to the original: 4 views) The licensed soundtrack is HORRIBLE (I turned it off after about 5 min) The "career mode" is NOTHING. It is far too easy, and didn't make me want to come back to play the game. You just drove around doing random races for not real purpose. Oh and no split-screen! If that isn't cutting corners, I don't know what is. The freaking GAMECUBE ORIGINAL HAD SPLIT/SCREEN! Seven years ago! And they can't do that today!

    Probably biggest letdown though: Overall, it was not fun to play. Cars handled like TANKS. While in Burnout Paradise it took SKILL and good reflexes to get by traffic at blazing speeds, here you will crash out in random situations. MANY TIMES. I consider myself an excellent racer, and when I keep crashing for BS reasons too many times, there is a problem. (There is also too much traffic, as if they want you to continue to keep crashing out.)

    You drive around, "hijacking" whatever car you see. You get no feeling of "accomplishment" and again is extremely boring. No visual customization (but you can change the paint by going through repair shops. Its random too. Common, this is so pathetic that they completely IGNORED the BEST PART about the original game!)

    Cop chases was the best mode in the original MW. It was very dramatic, and was it was fun smashing into cop cars (WITHOUT "CRASHING OUT" YOUR OWN CAR EVERY TIME YOU TOUCH SOMETHING) and knocking donuts shops over, blowing up gas stations. It was very cool. In this game however, it is a total JOKE. There is no dramatic music, no things to knock over. If they replaced those with something else, I would be happy. But no. The cops are SUPER DUMB, and will try to take yo out no matter what (the original, they also tried to spin you out, but again you wouldn't get "crashed out".)This makes for REAL BORING cop chases. I didn't even try in them, because nothing happened to you if you were caught! (The original had cool videos, and you would have to pay with money or impound you're car.)

    Looking at the online stuff, it's obvious Criterion spent most of their time here. And I admit, I give them some credit for making a somewhat decent system. Too bad they ENCOURAGED players to take each other out(Yes, they give you points for this)! I wouldn't go 30 seconds without someone smashing into me. This is not real racing. And no way is fun. Anyone who says otherwise is either brainwashed from all the mediocre games lately, or works for EA.

    In the end, this is more of a "reboot" and new interpretation of the term "Most Wanted". If they tried to make something original that was fun--they failed. If they intended to make a direct sequel--COMPLETE FAIL. This game gave me no enjoyment, and is currently sitting on Craigslist for $30. (Funny fact: the game was $35 everywhere 2 weeks after it came out. Thanks guys!)

    I will never pre-order a NFS game again. EA had every reason in the world to make this a fun, enjoyable game. And failed. They are ANNIHILATING the fans that have been here for them since the beginning. While the original game was fun, and overall a well-polished AAA game, here we have a over-rated CR@P that is a COMPLETE disgrace the Need for Speed series and racing games nowadays. Criterion must be INSANE to think they made a great game. The "professional" critics have not played the earlier NFS games: back when they were well-polished fun, long-lasting experiences to realize that this is total CR@P. They are praising mediocre games that do not have any heart or soul (I guarantee the older NFS games had a bigger budget and had more man-hours into them. That's why they are still great today!)
  20. Aug 11, 2013
    I'm so happy this was a free game for PlayStation Plus members, because I wouldn't pay a penny for it, it's boring, the cops come from the woodwork, the options for the game are to a minimum. You can't turn off the cut scene's if you crash.

    Bad car handling, no car customization, everything Need For Speed was is chucked out the window. I however admit the graphics are ten times better,
    however that doesn't make a good game. I won't be purchasing a game of NFS again, again thankfully I didn't buy this, I would of sent it back to EA and requested a refund. Expand
  21. Aug 16, 2013
    This game was an OK experience. The graphics are good, the cars have great detail, and there is a lot of cars in this game, BUT the thing that made me give this game a relatively average score is that you have to "find" them instead of earning them, the only cars you can earn are the cars you win when you complete a most wanted race, witch there are 10 in total. In the PS2 games, you'd have to BUY the cars, earning money from races and challenges. I felt no reward what so ever when i found an supercar a random place in the city, (and btw, the city is not big at all) it's even marked on your map when you're close to the cars you find. Another problem are the cops, they ram into you, it feels like they want to kill you, not stop you. If you're on an edge of a cliff, they just ram into you, killing you and themselves. Crashes are SOO frustrating and BORING in this game, they last waay to long, and your car looks the same after you've crashed your car 200 KmH into a wall. What happened to the crashes from Burnout? It's the same studio that made that game, why isn't it here Criterion? Another let down is NO customization AT ALL, the only things you can do is put off-road tires and nitro-boost in your car. The online can be pretty fun, but you have to drive to these locations and do the races or challenges, then drive to a new one. Why isn't there MODES in this game? If you want to do free-roam only in a public game, too bad, there is none of that, only in-between the races or challenges. Some people might enjoy this, but why not include RACE-ONLY, JUMP-CHALLENGES ONLY or DRIFTING-CHALLENGES ONLY modes. I am disappointed Critirion. The game can be really fun at times, racing against other on the highway is pretty fun, free roam is also fun, but is ruined by lack off specific modes, you have to do all this things you might not be intrested in too. There is nothing that makes your car special, in multiplayer, none will notice your car.
    If this is the way you want to go, having no customization, finding cars around the city, even starting off with a supercar, i will not buy your next game, and a lot of other fans that want progression and customization.
  22. Sep 28, 2013
    This game is retarded. You can never handle the car. You will crash all the time. You can never win in one go. It's like driving in GTA. How can anybody like this crap?
  23. Nov 10, 2013
    Worst driving physics of any racing game. I got the game free from PS Plus so can't complain too much, however I'd be gutted if I'd paid for it. When driving you feel as though you only have 50% influence on what happens to the car when doing races, you kind of need to guide the car rather than drive it and hope it lurches and bounces in the right direction.

    Need for speed has never
    been known for realism but this sets the standard for woeful driving experiences. Avoid if you're buying, but if you're getting it for free, don't expect anything close to a driving sim, it's awful. Expand
  24. Feb 22, 2014
    Don't trust the other reviewers. This is a great game, and a big improvment from Hot Pursuit. I like how it is open world, doesn't feel to linear, and the races and chases are mega intense. The speed point system is good, and not to complex. And contrary to popular belief, there is a consequence for being busted by the cops. During the pursuits, you rack up speed points, but they only give them to you if you escape. If you are busted, you gain NOTHING. For example, I was saving up speed points for my next most wanted race, and this one particular pursuit ran very long, about 40 minutes. Sounds boring, right? No. This one was filled with epic moments and high speed. I had about 40,000 speed points in the pursuit, the heat levels were in 5 or 6, and I knew that if I was busted, all that hard work would lead to nothing. I escaped by going up into a train track and waiting it out. One of the best feeling you can get from a game. Sure the handling feels a bit vague, and it can get really frustrating really quickly, but this is one of the best racers on the market so far. Expand
  25. Dec 15, 2013
    I'm a huge fan of the first NFS Most Wanted, but the 2012 one is just awful. Graphics wise it is great, but the gameplay is horrible. It's almost impossible to win races and there is absolutely no sense of accomplishment in this game. You have all the cars unlocked from the beginning, but that doesn't even matter, since the AI opponents are always right behind you, no matter what car you drive or how many times you crash into them. Expand
  26. Apr 29, 2014
    Absolute superb game. Beautiful graphics, immersive gameplay, awesome cars, huge open world and amazing multiplayer experience. Best racing game ever made on Earth.
  27. Feb 10, 2014
    This is stupid, I had the impression it was a remake of the original PS2 game to be greatly disappointed, the PS2 game is even better than this garbage. Only good if all you care about is graphics and lacks story based reason or motive for becoming most wanted.
  28. Apr 7, 2014
    Ill make this short for people looking to buy the game. I am a big fan of the nfs series and this one fits right in, sure it has its problems such as i dont like the car switching system and some of the car physics could use some work but outside of that the game is fun and action packed. You will be racing in multiple fast cars and coming up against some hard AI drivers, in a battle to become number 1. It is a great game and a great buy but in my opinion it did not do the original nfs most wanted justice. Expand
  29. Mar 22, 2014
    I bought this game on the PSN & I am royally pissed I can't get my $10 back! That's a pack of smokes with some change I could of bought. Zero visual customization, no manual transmission, extremely low amount of performance modifications, terrible AI, insanely aggressive cops with Crown Victorians (Police Interceptor does 0-60mph in 6 seconds), & the way you get new cars is childish. If your buying this game for a kid, then by all means buy it. If your an adult that goes to the local track as a hobby like myself, then DON'T WASTE YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY! Cars physics are as far from reality as Criterion could possibly make them. The repair stations are a absolute joke, races are extremely linear and trying to hit the apex of a turn will only lead to frustration as you likely have a head on collision with the average motorist. Graphics are nothing to write home to mom about & the ergonomics are laughable. I have deleted my digital copy from my HDD & wish there was a way to delete it from my downloads list in the PSN store. It is hind sight but I wish I came to this website to be informed of the mistake that is NFS: Most Wanted instead of going off the rating on the PSN store. BE FOR WARNED AND BEHOLD THE DEATH OF THE NFS SERIES. Expand
  30. Aug 23, 2014
    Criterion did a good job, altough it differs from PC, it's about gameplay, the graphics of the PS3 is good and the cars are really great to drive, though crashing happens but it doesn't really stops you from completing the game, unless you're looking for a harder challenge of getting gold medals and unlock all parts. There is also different parts and you can combine them to make your customized car and unlock their pro variants for a bigger boost. I specially like the Subaru WRX STI Hatchback which is the one I first did customize fully to my taste, and Lancer, more specifically everyday cars, they are also fun to race with and doesn't crash as much. Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. Dec 17, 2012
    Great multiplayer and a huge sandbox to play in make this a wild and crazy ride. [Jan 2013, p.64]
  2. Nov 30, 2012
    Easily the best arcade racer of this generation. [Issue#225, p.76]
  3. Take Burnout Paradise's massive open world, strip out the wild, physics-defying, cabin-crushing crashes and insert a generous handful of the world's hottest or most iconic motors. This is Need for Speed that only Criterion could create. [Christmas 2012, p.83]