Need for Speed 2 - Xbox - A Review

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ricky Hustle, Oct 3, 2002.

  1. Ricky Hustle

    Ricky Hustle Supporting Actor

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    I picked this one up despite lukewarm reviews over at IGN. My feelings towards IGN's reviewers I'll spare you, as that is a subject for another thread. [​IMG]
    I'll start of by admitting that the graphics in the game are not at the level of a Halo, PGR, or Sega GT. But what gives this game it's unique sense of style is the interesting color palette that is used, making the landscapes look almost surreal, and even though the trees are not rendered in the highest possible detail, what you see as you fly by at speeds in excess of 100 MPH does the trick as far as getting the point across that there are trees on the side of the road.
    There are three modes of play, Single Race, Championship, and Hot Pursuit (which involves Cops). There is not much more than that, as this game is faithful to it's roots. Shallow, maybe, but for me, it's all I need. This is probably not a game that you will play for hours on end, it's an arcade racer best for gameplay sessions from 10 minutes to an hour or two. When playing thru the modes, winning races and earning medals open up new races below in the tree structure. There are 33 races in each of the Championship and Hot Pursuit modes. You earn points by racing well and earning medals, and you use these points to unlock new cars and tracks in the Single Race portion of the game. If you play as the cop, you can order road blocks, spike strips, and helicopter support.
    The gameplay is fun, and that's what draws me to the NFS games. If you are looking for something deeper than what you saw a couple of years ago in NFS: Hot Pursuit on the PC, you will be disappointed. It's more of the same, with new cars and new tracks. Custom soundtracks ARE supported! The packed in songs suit this style of racing fine, and Rush fans will be delighted that a track from the new Vapor Trails album is built in.
    I'll address some things that have hurt the game in a certain reviewers' eyes...
     
  2. Rob Varto

    Rob Varto Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the review. I had originally ordered this title with free shipping from EBGames, but cancelled upon word of some of the "sense of speed" issues you discussed. I got a little scared and didn't want to drop $50 on the game. After your review, I might wait a few weeks and see if CC or BB drops the price to $39.99.
     
  3. Duane Robinson

    Duane Robinson Second Unit

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    Bargain bin buy for me. I just got Soccer Slam and Quantum Redshift so I'm pretty set for new games and I'm not craving a new one just yet. Plus with Midtown Madness just around the corner, which was built from the ground up for Xbox and has a pretty good history on the PC I think I'll hold off until I can get it used or for really cheap.
     
  4. James Zos

    James Zos Supporting Actor

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    Excellent review. You should tell IGN to hire you and get rid of whoever wrote that NFS review in the first place.
     
  5. Ricky Hustle

    Ricky Hustle Supporting Actor

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  6. Paul_Fisher

    Paul_Fisher Screenwriter

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  7. Ricky Hustle

    Ricky Hustle Supporting Actor

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    I get mine from Game Crazy which is part of Hollywood Video. Their used games are priced from 14.99 - 39.99 depending upon how long they have been out. They offer an MVP membership which is $20 per year, and you save 10% on all used games, and they buy back games from you at an additional 10% with the membership.

    I also buy used games right here at the good ole HTF.
     
  8. Chris Flynn

    Chris Flynn Second Unit

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    I won't be buying NFS:HP2 for Xbox. The PS2 version has way more extras than the Xbox and GC versions.

    Since I don't own a PS2, EA won't get any of my money for this game. I'm so sick and tired of EA shafting Xbox owners in terms of online play, extras, etc.
     
  9. Ricky Hustle

    Ricky Hustle Supporting Actor

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  10. Chris Flynn

    Chris Flynn Second Unit

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    I just wish more people would be vocal about this sort of thing. I know I'm not the only person out there that thinks about EA this way.

    I used to love their sports games - FIFA, NHL, Madden... But nowadays every yearly update seems to be the same old thing, just different rosters. I wish more developers would step up and create better games than EA. Companies like Sega who completely blew me away with NFL2K3. Superior to Madden in every way, AND with online play.

    They do nothing special for us Xbox owners. They give the PS2 the best version of NFS:HP2. We get a watered down version. Take advantage of the power of the Xbox or something, ANYTHING... All we get are ports, and in this case a poor port. They make no effort to make the game better. And forsaking online play via Xbox Live? That's the ultimate slap in the face to Xbox owners.

    I have ONE EA game in my house currently, and that Battlefield 1942. And if their track record with supporting games hold true, I expect rampant cheating in it soon, while EA rests on their laurels and does nothing about it. Just like Medal of Honor : Allied Assault.

    EA is the video game equivalent of Anthony Hopkins. They'll put their name on anything for a few bucks.
     
  11. Peter_A

    Peter_A Second Unit

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  12. Chris Flynn

    Chris Flynn Second Unit

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  13. Damien

    Damien Supporting Actor

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    anyone with an xbox should not get this, moto opl, rallisport, pgr, and to an extent sega gt 2002 are MUCH better
     
  14. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

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    I STILL like the 3DO version of this game. [​IMG] The point to point track design was excellent, and even the irritating "video guy" was okay. [​IMG]
     
  15. Ricky Hustle

    Ricky Hustle Supporting Actor

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    Well, after playing this game a few more days, I feel the urge to alter my original review even though I am still enjoying the game. I finally attempted to view a replay and discovered that you can only view it in the view that you raced, there are no fixed cameras placed throughout the track that capture the action. Who wants to see what they just saw for 10 minutes while racing. Whats the point of even rendering my car if I can't view it from an external camera? I play with the cockpit view, so the only time I see my car is from the jump cam.
    EA, you suck. I will NOT buy another of your products for the Xbox. You can stay snuggled up Sony's ass for all I care. [​IMG]
    My review at the top of the page has been altered.
     
  16. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  17. Peter_A

    Peter_A Second Unit

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  18. Jerry Gracia

    Jerry Gracia Supporting Actor

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    I think allot of people are jumping the gun here. Just because most web-site and mag publications say one version is better doesn't make it so...granted, most say that the PS2 version is better and this opinion is almost unanimous! I strongly urge most of you to spend some time with the XBOX version and don't give in to the hype, the XBOX version really is the better version IMO. I have both versions, here's my opinion:

    I’ve been reading much about the comparisons of Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on the internet and in gaming magazines (XBOX vs. PS2). For the record, I own both the XBOX and PS2 and I also own both versions of NFPHP2. One of the most consistent things I keep hearing is how much better the PlayStation 2 version is than the XBOX version. Here is an interesting quote:

    “the Xbox and GameCube versions of Hot Pursuit II have slightly detuned graphics, mushier controls, and inexplicably, a variety of minute but tangible omissions from the PlayStation 2 game.” –GAMESPOT.COM

    I can’t help but wonder how the author of this review came to this conclusion. The controls may seem “mushier” due to the fact that on the XBOX, NFPHP2 handles more like a SIM than the PS2 version. The PS2 version is as ARCADEY as you can get in game in my opinion…I think they are mistaking “tight” and “responsive” handling with ARCADE handling! “Detuned graphics”!? This one has me baffled! Again, I don’t know what kind of TV they are using or how they might have their reviewing monitors set up, but the XBOX version is clearly the better looking version. The PS2 version, when compared to the XBOX version, looks very PS1-like…heck, I even think the car models are better looking on the XBOX!

    I heard that the PS2 version had a “faster” frame rate. Granted, when I played the PS2 version for a few hours yesterday, there was a great sense of speed…but there was also a sense of cheapness in the graphics. Everything that flew by just had that PS1 look/feel to it. I also heard that on the XBOX, the frame rate was slower…again, these folks are confusing slow frame rate with simulation! When you drive a slower car, the frame rate will seem to be slower. Yesterday I ran some fast cars and the frame rate was every bit as good as in the PS2 version, but with prettier scenery going by! HOWEVER, in order to get that great sense of speed on the XBOX you have to use the 1st person road view, if you use any of the “outside” 3rd person views, the sense of speed is not there, this may be the grip most people have with the frame rate on the XBOX. Here’s something that some XBOX owners may not know…the RIGHT trigger actually acts as a boost button! The game manual and the game itself has no mention of this! (at least non that I could find)

    I like the game play much better on the XBOX. You don’t just mindlessly drive, you actually have to drive smartly…especially when a cop is right next to you, they can and will spin you around in 360 degrees all the way around and you can do the same thing to the cops! Tap their rear quarter panel and see them spin out out-of-control as you look back…its very satisfying to see that! You can do this to the AI cars, too! But you have to be careful because sometimes it’ll throw the handling of your car off and you can wreck as a result of these tactics too! The PS2 physics are much different, very different in fact. On the PS2 version, all you have to do is not let the cops pin you against the guard rail/wall…other than that, its quite easy to out run the cops on the PS2 version…there is never a threat that the cops will bump your rear quarter panel and spin you around in circles because it seems this type of handling physic isn’t programmed into the PS2 version. I tried over and over to produce this in the PS2 version and it never worked. Even setting the handling to “extreme” didn’t help on the PS2…your car slides, but it never completely spins out on the “extreme” setting.

    The PS2 version is much more forgiving. Little skill is required and perhaps that’s just what EA wanted for the PS2 version. The XBOX version requires a certain level of skill in navigating the turns, not allot, but some…much like in Gran Turismo 3.

    I don’t understand how/why so many web-site and gaming magazines have rated the PS2 version consistently higher than the XBOX version. If you only own the PS2, than you’ll be happy, no doubt. You won’t miss the other version until you play the game for yourself….and then again, maybe a more sim oriented NFP game isn’t your cup of tea, and that’s all good. But for me, the XBOX version is preferred.
    If you own an XBOX and a PS2 and have been wondering what version to get, I say get the XBOX version!

    If I had to part with one version, it would be the PS2 game that would go.

    Something to ponder…I am 28 and I prefer the XBOX version. My friend is 29 and he also prefers the XBOX version (we played both versions extensively yesterday)…my son is 8 and he likes playing the PS2 version. Make of that what you will.

    If there is one thing that I wished was available on the XBOX that is on the PS2 version, it’s the replays! The PS2 has a great replay after you run a race. You also have multiple camera angles to choose from during the replay. I can’t understand why this couldn’t have been implemented on the XBOX. On the XBOX, you only see the replay from the same camera angle you had during the race…I mean, what’s the point in that!?

    The 5.1 Dolby Digital surround sound can’t be beat on the XBOX either!

    Here’s a brief summary comparing the two versions:

    PS2 = Mindless fun.
    XBOX = Calculated, prettier fun.

    Just my view on the subject.
     
  19. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    Jerry,
    as you know i've spent some time now with the PS2 version, and despite what I said at your house, it's actually a really great game. It's just a matter of readjusting my perception of what I ask of the game. Like I told you Need for Speed III was just like this and I loved that game, and this one is world's better than 'NfSIII' was. I can find no major faults with your review, in fact I agree with just about all of it, however I must disagree with you on two points...
    1. The cops are actually very aggressive, I can't shake them most of the time. They may not spin you out as easily as the X-Box edition but I did get spun out by them.
    2. The graphics for the environments are nowhere near PS1 in quality. On the VVEGA they are extremely rich and deep, with very complex particle and water effects going on. I think you may have been referring to the jaggies which are very presant, but they can be minimized by the sharpness setting without sacrificing detail in the game.
    I'm 30 BTW. [​IMG]
     
  20. James Zos

    James Zos Supporting Actor

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    You bought the game for BOTH systems? $100 for basically the same game?
     

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