Need for Speed: World
|Need for Speed: World|
Cover art featuring a Lamborghini Gallardo being chased by police
|Developer(s)||EA Black Box (former)
Quicklime Games (former)
|Series||Need for Speed|
|Engine||Modified EAGL 3|
|Release date(s)||July 27, 2010 (July 20, 2010 for users who pre-ordered the Starter Pack)|
Need for Speed: World (previously known as Need for Speed: World Online) is the fifteenth installment in the long-running racing video game Need for Speed franchise published by Electronic Arts. This iteration has been co-developed by EA Black Box (rebranded Quicklime Games before closing in 2013) and EA Singapore. It is the first freemium MMORG in the Need for Speed series (though Motor City Online was originally conceived as a Need for Speed game) and is available exclusively for Windows-based PCs. World was released worldwide on July 27, 2010. However, people who ordered the Need for Speed: World Starter Pack had an early "head-start" in the game, which started on July 20, 2010.
World takes on the gameplay style of 2005's Most Wanted and 2006's Carbon, focusing on illegal street racing, tuning and police chases, and adds classic MMO elements to the mix such as special abilities. World is set in the fictional Tri-City, which is a mixture of the cities of Rockport and Palmont, the cities of Most Wanted and Carbon, into its map design, with redesigned graphics and new locations on the map to make travel between the two cities easier. The game currently features over 100 licensed cars consisting of tuners, muscle cars, exotics, race cars and SUVs. Manufactures range from Alfa Romeo to Volkswagen and there are over 30 manufactures in the game.
On December 2010, car performance customization was made available to players. Players can win parts from lucky draw, including rare Pro and Ultra series parts. Free players have a lower chance of winning a part compared to those who purchased SpeedBoost. Special card packs can be bought with SpeedBoost that give the greatly coveted parts. On March 16, 2011, visual aftermarket customization was also made available. All the in game cash bodykits from previous versions were removed. Most body kits require SpeedBoost to purchase. On March 31, 2011, Electronic Arts introduced a new game mode called Team Escape, a cooperative version of a police pursuit where up to four players must race as a team driving from point A to point B while avoiding numerous cops. For this mode, two co-op versions of the game's power-ups have been released.
On July 26, 2011, a new game mode called Treasure Hunt was released. In this mode, played during free roam, players collect fifteen gems around a randomly selected area once a day in the World to earn boosts of reputation and in-game cash. Playing the Treasure Hunt mode multiple days in a row can build up what is known as a Treasure Hunt Streak. Players can earn high-end performance parts or additional power-ups after completing every hunt based on the day count of the streak (for example, if the player completes Treasure Hunt for twelve days in a row, they will receive a tier 1 pro performance part).
Skill customization was released, replacing the old level-up skill point system. All players that had the old skill points invested got skill mods corresponding with the skills they had invested points in. Players could only receive a maximum of 125 skill mods regardless of how many skills or cars they had. 4-star (highest) skill mods can be won from lucky draws or purchased through card packs. One-star mods are purchasable for in-game cash. On November 16, 2012, police vehicles were removed from free roam in World . Players were no longer able to start pursuits by ramming police vehicles; police chases are only possible by joining Pursuit Outrun events. On October 16, 2012, drag racing was introduced to World. This mode allowed players to race other players to the finish line in various strips of straight roads. Players would need to use manual transmission and shift their way to the finish. Automatic transmission is also available to the players. Single player mode has also been made available with in-game traffic.
Before September 8, 2010, after reaching level 10 and access to only first tier and some second tier cars, the player would not be able to progress further in the game and would cease to earn any more experience points or cash. To continue the game, the player had to purchase the Need for Speed World Starter Pack. Without it, the player was allowed to play the game for as long as he or she wants, but he or she would cease to earn experience and cash. On September 8, 2010 World had passed 1 million registrations. To celebrate that, the game was made free-to-play and the level cap was removed.
The game was first announced to be free-to-play. In October 2009, World was opened to public beta-testing limited to residents of Taiwan. There have been seven closed beta sessions in total. Except the first one, all were available worldwide to residents who sign up, meet admission criteria, and get accepted. An open beta was started on July 2, 2010 at 10am PDT. The Beta was scheduled to close on July 6, 2010 but was extended to July 9, 2010. A stress-test was opened from July 13 through 14th, 2010. Players who purchased the starter pack were able to play the game one week before the official release. Players who did not purchase the starter pack were able to play on July 27, 2010.
On April 10, 2013 an opportunity to win valuable in-game rewards by completing various achievements was introduced. This aggravated the pre-existing and largely ignored problem of cheating in the game. The existence of the problem was finally acknowledged by a Community Manager on April 15, 2013. Quicklime Games, which was in charge of game development, maintenance and updates, was shut down on April 25, 2013. By the end of May 2013, the number of instances of cheating has dropped off with no official announcement on what actions were taken. On September 10, 2013, a Community Manager announced that Easy Studios (developers for Battlefield Play4Free) took over from Quicklime Games. Since the takeover by Easy Studios, the game has been left in a vulnerable state with the new studio not knowing how it functions even after many months of training and transition. ". The problem of cheating still remains an issue.
Map of World
World features a large map consisting of the cities of Palmont and Rockport, from Carbon and 2005's Most Wanted respectively. Highways from the game have been placed to interconnect with the other cities and several new roads have been created in both cities, as well as tunnels. Even though it only features two maps, there is a rumour that the Tri-City Bay, the city featured in Undercover, will be placed in the game, since there is a road connecting to a turnpike over a bridge which leads to a tollbooth, although it is closed. Maps that may come soon are the new connector road linking Downtown Palmont and Kempton to Downtown Rockport and also the canyons from Carbon, but as of 2014 this is nothing but rumors.
The highest praise of the game came from GamingXP, which commented that "The game feels like a combination of previous Need for Speed games except the single player has been cut off. Add some role-play elements and you have a racing MMO." PC Format gave a somewhat mediocre review in their October 2010 issue, concluding that the game "feels like a missed opportunity." Eurogamer commented that "It's a real shame that the MMO aspect of World is effectively a needlessly elaborate lobby." In November 2012, World surpassed 20 million registered users.
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