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October 7 2011
Need for Speed: The Run - PS3 Preview
Release Date Distributer Publisher Developer
17/11/2011EA GamesEA GamesEA Black Box
Offline Players Online players Price Anticipation
12-?$109.95
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Car detail in NFS: The Run is solid.
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Racing through the snowy mountains.

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Need for Speed: The Run looks impressive.
Racing games are a dime a dozen, with this generation seeing everying from full on arcade titles, to full on simulators. Need for Speed: The Run is the 18th title in Electronic Arts' long running racing franchise, and is set for release in only a few weeks time. Indeed, it's looking very impressive.

We don't really have a lot of details on the storyline, but it's a racing game so it's probably not a primary concern. What we do know is that you play the role of jack who owes a whole swag of money to some less then legitimate people, and he enters a race called "The Run" to pay off a $25 million debt. Electronic Arts have been pushing the "gripping" storyline in this game so perhaps they have something special in store - and we know it's not just the cops that will be chasing you down on the road!

So this is essentially a cross-country race from San Francisco to New York. As EA's press release states "Entering the race is just the beginning as you blow across borders, weave through dense urban traffic, rocket down icy mountain passes and navigate narrow canyons at breakneck speeds." While the game sees you racing from San Francisco to New York plenty of other cities will feature including Las Vegas, Denver, and Detroit. Indeed the developers have created over 300km of roads to race on - more then three times more then that in Need for Speed Hot Pursuit.

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NFS: The Run uses the Frostbite2 engine.
The biggest change this game will bring to the series though is the ability to jump out of the car and run around on foot. Interestingly this game will also introduce Quick Time Events, the outcomes of which may have some bearing on the storyline and events in the game.

The game will include a swag of great cars, but as a bonus for PS3 owners there are seven exclusive, and damn impressive, cars including a Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, Hennessey Venom GT, Gumpert Apollo Sports, Lamborghini Countach QV5000, Koenigsegg Agera R, Lexus LF-A and Porsche Carrera GT.

Autolog, the Need for Speed? franchise’s revolutionary social competition functionality, is back and better in Need for Speed The Run as it will continue to reinvent how people play games, track career progression and compare game stats.

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Oh yes, the visuals are nice...
Need for Speed: The Run actually runs on DICE's Frostbite2 engine which will debut with the release of Battlefield 3 in late October, only a couple of weeks before this game. It will be interesting to see how well the engine, which previous versions have all been used for FPS (read: Battlefield) titles, adapts to the racing genre, although the development team has taken a year to adapt the engine to suit the game. As you would be able to see yourself, the screenshots and footage are certainly very impressive.

We're pretty excited about this game actually with everything seemingly in place for a very solid title indeed. With a release set for November 17 we don't have too long to see if EA Black Box have continued on the strong run of titles in the franchise of late following Shift 2: Unleashed released early this year, and last years very impressive Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit which was developed by Criterion. A demo is due out on October 18, about a month before NFS: The Run hits shelves.