Metascore
72

Mixed or average reviews - based on 61 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 61
  2. Negative: 1 out of 61
Buy On
  1. Nov 22, 2019
    90
    When a game is genuinely good, it doesn’t feel like I’m playing it just for the sake of the review. Need for Speed Heat evokes that feeling as I’m simply having too much fun with it. Compared to its obvious role models, it doesn’t ramble all over the place but has a grateful focus to it. The game comfortably speeds along a yellow brick road that goes neatly between calculated appeal of Forza Horizon and the excess abundance of The Crew, and that’s why I liked it better than those two. In fact, I’m afraid that NFS Heat kind of spoils its genre. I need games with a human touch and after this, racing games without this much personality just won’t do anymore
  2. Nov 8, 2019
    85
    Need for Speed Heat leaves a good taste: a enormous map, lots of races and missions to complete, good speed sensation and huge customization options (both in cars and avatar)... It feels like a greatest hits album, with the best parts from the previous 15 years of NFS remixed.
  3. 85
    Need for Speed ​​Heat is the greeting of the series to this generation but also a new beginning thanks to its solidity, aesthetics, and playability. Ghost Games has combined the simplicity of the inputs with a great sense of control, in a beautiful open world to see and full of events.
  4. Nov 8, 2019
    85
    Need for Speed: Heat is the kind of game that reinvigorates the franchise. With so many things to do, so much to explore and unlock, it’s a complete experience with an extreme racing intensity that's somewhat hampered by tedious grinding at later levels and the extreme difficulty of high Heat levels. If you haven’t gotten into a Need for Speed game in a while, this is probably the time to finally hop back in.
  5. Dec 2, 2019
    83
    Again, I don’t think Need for Speed Heat does much to re-invent the wheel when it comes to open-world racing games, but it does help reset the franchise in a way that felt necessary at this point. It’s an enjoyable experience throughout, the story is entertaining if maybe a little too serious, and the overall progression path is well realized. If you’re hungry to get behind the wheel of a virtual car this season, Need for Speed Heat is likely going to be the game for you.
  6. Dec 2, 2019
    80
    With over 120 cars and customisation options to improve performance, there doesn't seem to be much purpose to continue rising once the story mode is complete, and the only sense of competitiveness comes from the standard cop pursuits. However, there is no doubt that Need for Speed: Heat is one of the better entries in the franchise since Ghost Games has taken over development.
  7. Nov 25, 2019
    80
    Like comfort food for fans who’ve loved the Underground/Most Wanted games from back in the day. The day and night system is addictive, the cars feel great and distinct, the visuals are fantastic (especially at night) and the old-school customization is back and better than ever.
  8. Nov 21, 2019
    80
    Need for Speed Heat feels like a return to form for the franchise. There’s very little new here, but what is here is certainly a crowdpleaser for anyone who has dipped in and out of the 25-year-old racing IP.
  9. 80
    Need For Speed Heat takes the series back to its roots which means night time racing, angry cops and plenty of car customisation and is all the better for it.
  10. Nov 18, 2019
    80
    While it doesn’t quite meet the lofty standards of those early-2000’s entries, it’s definitely the best Need for Speed we’ve seen in quite some time.
  11. Nov 13, 2019
    80
    Need for Speed Heat is the best the series has been in a while. It’s not perfect by any stretch, but it has a charm that reminds me of the Underground days of old. Now that’s a NfS game I can get down with.
  12. Nov 12, 2019
    80
    Need for Speed Heat may be a greatest hits collection of past success stories in an attempt to make up for the past, but it still pushes the pedal to the metal when it comes to being a guilty pleasure of pure street racing junk food that’s hot off the engine block.
  13. 80
    Need for Speed Heat is a solid arcade racer, in a landscape that continues to suffer from a drought of them. It is also, surprisingly, a solid arcade racer that is not plagued by the scourge that can be microtransactions, in a landscape (and from a publisher) that continues to practically drown in them.
  14. Nov 11, 2019
    80
    Need for Speed heat has one of the best gameplay and visuals ever seen in a racing game. It also marks a change for the franchise, a game that focus more on street racing rather than the story. However, it takes a lot of mechanics from other games like The Crew or Forza Horizon, resulting in an experience that, although it's fun, lacks personality.
  15. Nov 11, 2019
    80
    NFS: Heat is kind of a best-of with the best elements from the previous NFS games, with the addition of day and night races. All of it isn't very innovative, but not less entertaining because of it.
  16. Nov 8, 2019
    80
    Given EA's conservative approach, you already know exactly what you can expect from Need for Speed Heat. We are nevertheless happy with this pleasant exercise in street racing, tuning and police prosecution - although the whole thing has been somewhat frayed.
  17. Nov 8, 2019
    80
    Heat is the best Need for Speed in years, motivates and is a tuning monster - but not in a league with the competition.
  18. Nov 8, 2019
    80
    While Need for Speed Heat feels a little more like a mosaic of existing concepts rather than something especially trendsetting, Ghost has certainly scraped these ideas from some of the most-loved games in the now 25-year-old series. Heat doesn’t always sizzle but it’s definitely much hotter than I’d expected. This is easily the most impressive Need for Speed game in many years.
  19. Nov 8, 2019
    80
    For the first time in years, Need For Speed has remembered why people used to play it so religiously, and recognised the more recent elements that put them off. I’ll take a missed checkpoint or a dodgy police bust now and again in exchange for a return to Underground’s unlock structure and tuner fetishism; for Hot Pursuit’s high stakes chases; for an EA release in 2019 without an RNG element designed to slow progress.
  20. Nov 8, 2019
    80
    Need for Speed Heat features plenty of hours worth of high octane racing while representing an encouraging return to form for the franchise as it heads into the next generation.
  21. Nov 13, 2019
    78
    Need for Speed has meant different things over the years, but Heat is a good all-around representation of the franchise. The police could be a little more prominent, and the world – while well stocked – isn’t as interesting as Forza Horizon’s, for instance, but NFS Heat is the best iteration since Ghost Games’ reboot in 2015.
  22. Nov 18, 2019
    76
    NFS Heat is a great attempt to return to ye old form of previous titles. A strong foundation to build upon.
  23. Nov 21, 2019
    75
    Chances are you already know if this game is for you. It’s Need for Speed through and through, for better or worse, but the execution is far better here than the last few attempts I’ve made to dive back in. If you’re looking for classic, core arcade racing without a lot of frills and don’t mind a story mode that is distracting at best, you could do worse with your $60 than Need for Speed Heat. Problem is, you can also do better.
  24. Nov 11, 2019
    75
    while it's not the awaited comeback, Need for Speed: Heat is a decent game that is faithful to what we love about this series.
  25. Nov 8, 2019
    75
    Quotation forthcoming.
  26. Nov 8, 2019
    75
    In General, Need For Speed Heat looks quite acceptable for the game for a few dozen evenings.
  27. Nov 15, 2019
    74
    The aesthetic is beautiful, the new drifting mechanic feels solid, and the game even offers daily challenges to earn a little extra bank. If you enjoy arcade racing this is definitely a title for you, and I am happy to see Need for Speed find some traction again and hopefully it will take off once more.
  28. Nov 19, 2019
    72
    In the end, Need for Speed Heat is a return to the series' old form, with an emphasis on "old." It's not completely stuck in the past but clearly tries to emulate different features from different past titles and consolidate them into one experience. That means returning players will find many things to like here, but not all of that is purely great. Looking at the bigger picture, NFS Heat is a small win for a franchise that has lost its way for years and is slowly getting its stride back. Heat plays it a little too safe, so it'll be interesting to see if the series builds on this progress with a bolder next entry to deliver a great experience instead of a decent one.
  29. Dec 30, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed: Heat is the first good step for the franchise in years. Devoid of micro transactions, providing some Underground-like neon vibes with it’s best customization system, it can provide more than a dozen of hours of fun, despite it’s dead like world design and irrelevant and boring story.
  30. Playstation Official Magazine UK
    Dec 17, 2019
    70
    The Heat meter effectively turns GTA’s wanted level into score attack, which is awesome. But the open-world busywork, generic city, and too-flimsy obstacles dilute the otherwise decent gameplay. [Issue#170, p.88]
  31. 70
    When Need for Speed: Heat is producing its promised fantasy, it’s a wonderful game which I’m always happy to keep coming back to. Ghost Games have improved their engine and systems to make the city and cars feel better than ever, and Heat’s core gameplay loop is designed to last. Occasionally there are the moments which require suspension of disbelief, and it’s possible for the more misguided elements to build tedium in an otherwise strong entry to the series. Heat is a marked improvement on the last few Need for Speed games, however, and I hope that further refinement will see the series better deliver on its legacy.
  32. Nov 25, 2019
    70
    A fantastic sense of speed and exciting night-time racing help make Need for Speed Heat the best entry into the series in a while, even though the online component is mostly dead-on-arrival and progression can feel like a grind at times due to a stingy economy.
  33. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed Heat has a lot of fun ideas, intense police chases, an incredible look and great sense of speed. It does however lack something to make it stand out from the pack, and after the story's done, there's not much keeping me coming back for more.
  34. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    It took four attempts, but Ghost Games has finally managed to create a Need for Speed game that rivals the best entries of the long running series.
  35. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    While it’s got a long way to go to hit the heights of the Forza Horizon competition, the improved story telling, inventive Night vs. Day structure, and fun driving make Heat worth picking up even if Payback and 2015’s reboot put you off the series.
  36. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    Need For Speed Heat is easily one of the better Need For Speed games of the Frostbite engine era. If it wasn't up against some extremely impressive rival racing games like GRID this year, then it would probably be more of an essential purchase, but even so Need For Speed fans will want to get hold of this one. Unless, of course, the lack of live-action cutscenes is a complete turnoff.
  37. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    While the racing is fun and the customization is deep, Need for Speed: Heat feels far too familiar. The day-night gameplay loop does mix things up a little but this racing title does very little to separate it from its predecessors. Its story is predictable and its presentation is underwhelming. Need for Speed: Heat is fun but predictable and slightly stale.
  38. Nov 18, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed Heat is far from the revival of the series which fans have hoped for, and makes you wonder what happened to Criterion. Ghost games did a decent job steering back Need for Speed into safer waters, but it lacks the passion and the visceral fun which made Underground legendary. Need for Speed Heat is a decent game, but not a memorable one.
  39. Nov 15, 2019
    70
    By fusing the design and feel of Most Wanted and Underground, Ghost Games created a game that is by all means better than Payback, but is still struggling to find its place in the market. And with the competition now -in the form of Forza Horizon 4- galloping, Ghost Games must surely up their game with their new project.
  40. Nov 14, 2019
    70
    With only a select few events, no discernible difference between each car's handling, and a simplistic driving model, Need for Speed Heat does stumble into repetition during its final few hours. It's not quite a rip-roaring return to form, then, but this latest entry puts the Need for Speed series back on the right track.
  41. Nov 14, 2019
    70
    Palm City is a lot of fun to explore at night, yet kind of boring during the day. Lots of tuning options and exciting chase sequences will keep you playing, though the same can unfortunately not be said about the game's lackluster story.
  42. Nov 13, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed Heat is the best entry in the franchise for quite some time, but it's still not quite where it needs to be. The day vs. night gameplay is a compelling loop, and it's a big step in the right direction for the series in general. It's a solid effort with fun handling and lots of customisation options. It's a shame the open world lacks personality, and the police are perhaps a little too hardball, but there's still plenty to like. At the tail end of this generation, Need for Speed is back to being good -- let's hope it can be great in future.
  43. Nov 12, 2019
    70
    The best Need For Speed in several years, which may sound like mild praise but despite a lack of variety this is a fun arcade racer hybrid that respects its roots.
  44. Nov 12, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed: Heat can be a ton of fun but is held back by incredibly questionable AI. The vehicle customisation and tuning is incredible and the games has plenty of content to keep you racing for weeks. The story feels a little silly but the racing itself is a joy to play. This is the course-correction the series so desperately needed, and I can't wait to see Ghost Games build on this solid foundation for their next entry.
  45. Nov 12, 2019
    70
    To the game’s credit, the police presence on the track feels less like a gimmick than a genuine menace.
  46. Nov 11, 2019
    70
    Need for Speed Heat is a full open world racing game. It does just about everything the competition offers, but without thinking outside the box. Less generalist than Gran Turismo or Forza Horizon, which he comes closest, he is far from equal. However, it offers a good alternative to change the mood. Racing games in open world are no longer jostling at the gate anyway.
  47. Nov 8, 2019
    70
    Great modding and a decent game engine can’t disguise the tired story and simplistic driving.
  48. Nov 13, 2019
    68
    Unfortunately, Need for Speed: Heat is not the game that will bring back the magic to the franchise, but nonetheless, it's still a solid entry which certainly deserves your attention, only if you're a fan of this kind of game.
  49. Nov 11, 2019
    68
    It wouldn’t be totally fair to call Need for Speed Heat a bad game, but given the exciting high-speed material it’s defined by, it is a disappointingly boring one. Small blessings like the lack of over-aggressive microtransactions and an incredibly in-depth car customization suite can’t make up for gameplay and progression loops which, at best, feel routine and archaic, and at worst frustrating and obtuse. It’s understandable that publisher Electronic Arts would want to recapture the glory of Need for Speed’s heyday, but all Need for Speed Heat proves is that maybe the series just needs to rest for a while.
  50. Nov 8, 2019
    67
    Need for Speed: Heat clearly shows why the series needs a serious pause to reorganize itself.
  51. Nov 25, 2019
    65
    Need for Speed Heat is an average game that maintains some essential elements of the franchise, with some poor implementations that sabotaged the project itself.
  52. Nov 8, 2019
    65
    Need for Speed: Heat needs a better balance, both in the progression system and police chases, to make it all fun, instead of frustrating.
  53. Nov 8, 2019
    65
    You can have a lot of fun tinkering with the car's trim, you can spend hours changing your car's livery, and some chase with the police will no doubt be remarkable, but beyond this Heat it remains a Need For Speed ​​without too much momentum.
  54. Nov 8, 2019
    64
    This is pure mediocrity. The simple driving physics deliver solid arcade feeling, but the boring story and some disputable design decisions throw a spanner in the works.
  55. Nov 19, 2019
    60
    Need for Speed Heat ditching its predecessor’s heavy-handed microtransactions and live-service nonsense is commendable, but in most other ways, this is actually a step back for the series. The game provides some solid arcade thrills, but a limited map, so-so visuals, slapdash action, and irritating cops weigh the experience down. If you’re desperate for a new open-world racer, Need for Speed Heat may be worth a spin, but most will want to wait until this one hits the used car lot.
  56. Nov 13, 2019
    60
    Need for Speed Heat’s driving is a step in the right direction for a franchise that’s stuck at the back of the pack. However, its poor story, severe balance problems, and complete lack of an online presence stop it from ever reaching top speed.
  57. Nov 8, 2019
    60
    Need For Speed Heat is a fun racing game that is still held back by a weak, multiplayer, story, and lack of event variety.
  58. Nov 8, 2019
    60
    Need for Speed Heat is a conglomeration Need for Speeds past. A little Payback, a little Rivals, a little Hot Pursuit, a little Underground. The result is a good foundation to build upon, but weird AI issues, a lack of variety in events, and some poor tuning in cop chases mean it's not great. Maybe next gen will see Ghost Games bringing a little more real heat.
  59. Nov 8, 2019
    55
    This Need for Speed has everything it needs to please the players, especially those looking for an heir to Most Wanted. But Heat lacks of driving sensations, of a proper physic management, and has plenty of balance problems, making the game more frustrating than fun.
  60. 50
    An unnecessary release which cobbles together pieces from other, better racing games into a competent but dull experience. Save your cash and grab a copy of Burnout Paradise Remastered instead.
  61. Nov 18, 2019
    30
    If Forza and Heat were in a boxing match, Forza would be Mike Tyson in his prime and Heat would be a toddler.
User Score
6.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 659 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Nov 8, 2019
    10
    i think story is nice and gameplay is much better than payback
    ghost games really cleaned their mess on payback
  2. Nov 10, 2019
    2
    Boring and flawed.

    No button mapping to configure your controller. Drifting is a joke. No race line to show you the layout of the track.
    Boring and flawed.

    No button mapping to configure your controller.
    Drifting is a joke.
    No race line to show you the layout of the track.

    It's just a pretty car show. It has nothing to do with racing.
    Full Review »
  3. Nov 8, 2019
    9
    One of the best NFS games in years. Worth your time and money. I played the trial and now that it is released I can say I’ve never had so muchOne of the best NFS games in years. Worth your time and money. I played the trial and now that it is released I can say I’ve never had so much fun with a NFS title since the days of Most wanted and Carbon. 9/10 Full Review »