- Build the ultimate street machine by earning cash to pay for custom body kits
- Perfect skills by nailing the perfect shift in drag racing and by putting you street cred on the line
- For up to four players
- 20 fully customizable, licensed cars from Mitsubishi Motors, Subaru, Toyota, and more
- Features urban street racing and high performance tuner cars
List Price: $39.99
Need for Speed Underground Description
Reviews By Derek G : Date December 18, 2003
Driving fans rejoice! Jumping on the popularity of import street racing, and borrowing heavily from the driving scenes of The Fast and the Furious, NFS Underground is a combination of both beauty and brains that’s a must-have for any racing fan; provided you have the hardware to handle it. Best of all, you don’t have to endure Paul Walker’s lame acting.
Slicked up and glowing with neon, EA’s latest release is the most visually stunning NFS game produced to date. You can actually see the reflection of your car and the surroundings off the rain-soaked streets. Even more impressive are how the screen explodes in light and your surroundings shake into a chaotic mess as you approach speeds much higher than your car was originally designed to handle. It’s the most visceral feeling of speed in a game yet as you really feel like your computer is doing 150mph. Unfortunately, all this eye candy comes at a price as you’ll need some serious hardware to experience it in all its glory. Plan on having at least a Geforce 3 or a Radeon 9000 just for low detail settings. For full detail you’ll need at least a Radeon 9600 or a Geforce 5600, not to mention a quick CPU and plenty of RAM.
Many liked EA’s previous NFS release, Hot Pursuit, but I was disappointed as the attention to the driving physics seemed to go out the window. I had the same complaint about Midnight Club II; a game that, in a word, sucked. Fortunately, I can say this is not the case in NFS Underground. Each car has a distinctive feel, with individual strengths and weaknesses. It’s an arcade racer at heart, but there are enough differences in the cars to make you want to experiment with different cars and find the one that suits your style of driving best.
Sound effects are top-notch. THX enabled, the engines roar to life and cars, buildings, and slow moving objects whoosh past your ears in true surround sound. Those with 4+ speaker setups are in for a real treat with this game. Also included are about 25 tracks ranging from rap to rock to techno, featuring artists like BT, Nate Dogg, Overseer, Fuel, and Static-X. While it’s a decent selection, it’s still only about 2 hours of music. Perhaps it’s just me, but music with vocals gets repetitive and annoying over time as opposed to background music. I never liked that "Get Low" song much to begin with. I’ve heard it so much now I’m at the point of self-mutilation. Fortunately, EA provides you with the ability to customize the soundtrack so you can eliminate the songs you don’t like.
The game isn’t perfect.
Reviews By Lorin Reed : Date December 5, 2003
Okay, so everyone is nuts about this game. and when i finally played it, i understood why. the cutomization options are such a fun gimmick- i had a lot of fun turning an ugly yellow VW GTI into a drag racing monster with beautifully tinted windows, custom decals, and rims of my choosing. It’s what everyone wants when they play a racing game- the ability to craft a car that suits their taste, right down to the type of exhaust. And i have no problem with the fact that this feature was implemented. i think it was a good idea. The problem I have is with the way that it was implemented.
Why am i still unlocking decals and vinyl at level 100? who cares that i finally unlocked the nitrous express decal; dont i deserve more than that at level 100? and why dont i get the wide body kit until the 3rd to last race? great! i can throw this wide body kit on my car, which does absolutely nothing for performance, so that i look good for the final competition.
Money is never a problem in this game. You always have more than enough to unlock anything you want, because you get money after every race. So, a better way to do this would have been to make everything availible from the start of the game, with higher prices on the performance parts and consistent lower prices on the things you dont need (like decals and vinyl). That way, the player can see what they could potentially be unlocking and work for it, instead of just having it blindly handed to them when they can most definately afford it. But because of the way the customization system was implemented, theres really no point in having money in this game.
My other complaint is with the AI. its not like you’re actually racing to gain distance on other cars, ever. its more like you’re racing against other cars that will always either be ahead of you, or slightly behind you, and catching up fast. This is especially true in later races, where even if you set the difficulty to easy, cars will catch up quickly, and most likely, pass you. I did an experiment to see how the AI worked, and what i found was kind of dissapointing. In later races, when i would perform almost flawlessly (because i’d had to do the same race about 50 times over and over), another car would always be right behind me, or in front of me.
Reviews By DeadlyFred : Date December 18, 2004
Regardless of your personal views of illegal street racing, Need For Speed : Underground provides an unmatched thrill-ride in the racing genre. You may think the cars look silly, you may think the reckless people who drag race them down public streets should all be arrested, but when you slap it all into a well-polished video game package, the appeal is undeniable. Whether its the allure of the tuner subculture or just an enjoyment of racing games in general that draws you in, I can almost gaurantee you’ll be hooked after the first few 100 mile an hour tours of NFS:U’s virtual metropolis.
The driving engine offered here is both friendly yet complex, allowing beginners to quickly pick up and become familiar with it, and more seasoned players to exploit a number of skillful feats to shave precious seconds off their lap times. In addition, it has an excellent “feel” to it. Both the car’s physics and the motion of the camera will constantly react to even the slightest control input as you send your tricked-out racers barreling across intersections and down narrow alleyways at break-neck speeds.
As much as I personally enjoy games like GTA and Mafia which allow you to race recklessly down city streets, the average cookie-cutter racing sim has never really appealed to me much. You get a fancy car, you get a nice open track, and you get to drive around it; I can’t say the formula excites me much.