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Platform

Wii

 

Genre

Racing

 

Publisher

Electronic Arts

 

Developer

EA Montreal

 

ESRB

E +10 (Everyone)

 

Released

November 3, 2009

 

 

- Built for the Wii and feels like it

- Lots of control options and a great sense of speed

 

 

- Can be frustrating for the first few races, especially until you find controls that work for you

- Arcade mode curiously leaves out some options for no apparent reason

 

 

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Need for Speed: Nitro

Score: 8.0 / 10

 

need for speed nitro          need for speed nitro

 

The Need for Speed series has had its ups and downs over the years and recently Iím happy to report that it seems to be on an upswing. This version, specifically designed for the Wii has given the series a much needed kickstart on the Wii.

 

When I first tried this version I used the standard Wiimote control to play. Shifting in the drag races involves shaking the up and down and turning involves merely the flick of a wrist. It sounds interesting in theory, but I personally found myself crashing into traffic way too often, causing me to fail a race completely. Fortunately, I stuck with it and found my Mario Kart steering wheel was a much better way to play. Support for the Gamecube and Classic controllers are also

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included as well as variants with the nunchuk. In short, there is no lack of options when it comes to control.

 

Picking your cars is a delight with lots of options from performance machines to street cars. The customization of your vehicle is done easily with the Wiimote and itís evident that the team spent a lot of time on this particular user

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interface aspect. The game is better for it because it extends the time youíll want to spend with the game if you are a tinkerer.

 

Like many racers before it, there are various options for the types of races and the tracks. Youíll find, as I did, that some appeal to you more than others. Nitro plays an important part of the experience as you want to boost at just the right time. If your car is in need of repair, your nitro is not available which will ultimately hurt your lap time.

 

The race types are pretty standard stuff if youíve played any of the games in the series before Ė circuit, elimination, time attack, speed trap, drift challenge and drag races and earning stars will help you unlock the next city. Pulling off drifts and other tricks will help you along the way but I found you might have to practice a fair amount with your chosen control scheme because you might get confused between them causing you to lose points. Overall, the game has a reasonable amount of difficulty without being overly difficult.

 

need for speed nitro          need for speed nitro

 

Multiplayer support (for up to four players) is included as well. Whatís fun here is that if one player gets knocked out of the race, they can come back as the cops! I liked this idea and it makes you almost want to perform poorly at least once to give it a shot.

 

Itís great to see Electronic Arts put some effort into a platform specific release instead of the sub-standard ports the Wii often tends to get. This game has blistering speeds at times with support for a full 60 frames a second and youíll feel right at home behind the wheel for this old friend with a fresh coat of paint. Highly recommended for fans of the series, just bring your wheel to the party.

 

- Syd Bolton

(January 21, 2010)


 Syd Bolton surrounds himself in classic games at the Personal Computer Museum (www.pcmuseum.ca) in Brantford, Ontario, Canada.

 

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