Need For Speed Rivals is the latest game in the Need For Speed series and the first one on the new game system, the PS4. While the game is also out on the last gen systems, it does look better on the more powerful PS4. This iteration of Need For Speed was developed by Ghost Games and published by EA. It does resemble some of the past Need For Speed games mainly Hot Pursuit, but has the open world game play of Need For Speed Most Wanted.
The game takes place in a fictional county called Redview County. It does not contain an urban landscape, nevertheless, the different type of terrain you’ll be driving through in the open world map of Redview County is pretty amazing. There’s lots of windy roads that go high up in the mountains, plus you’ll be driving through farm fields, forests, deserts, and even a wide open interstate highway.
There is a day and night system in the game as well as different types of weather you’ll be encountering such as snow in the mountains and even rain and storms in the lower areas. With the power of the PS4, it all combines very well graphically and the draw distance is done very well here.
There are two types of story mode or campaign you can choose to play as which is Racer or Cop. If you choose racer, you then get to choose which set of challenges you want to complete to advance the story and unlock new content such as new cars, pursuit tech which is basically different types of weapons to arm your car with such as an EMP wave or shockwave, and you can also unlock upgrades. The types of challenges you get to choose from range anywhere from racing tasks, tasks of evading the cops, or doing special things with your vehicle such as long drifts or long jump distances.
If you choose cop, you go through the training and officially become a member of the Redview County Police Department. You basically do challenges here as well to unlock new vehicles and upgrades, but they are more geared toward taking down racers. I would say that it is definitely less challenging than the racer campaign mode, but it is easy to switch between the two if you want to change it up.
You do have to earn points which is called SP in the game in order to buy new cars, upgrades, or weapons for your vehicle. There is a good range of vehicles in the game such as Ferrari, Porsche, Aston Martin, and more. All of them do have different handling, but it is not too difficult to master and the upgrades you can add to each vehicle does help as well.
The cops chases in the game are definitely challenging and do give you an adrenaline rush. Your vehicles do take damage and if the cops damage your vehicle enough, you are busted and all the points (SP) that you earned are gone. The only way to avoid this is to try and make it to a hideout where you can enter to get away from the cops and save your SP. The good news is that there is a GPS you can access easily that will guide you and show you the distance to the nearest repair shop or hideout.
In Need For Speed Rivals, the line between single player and online is virtually gone. When you start a game (hopefully you have an internet connection and are a member of PS Plus), it will automatically connect you to a server where you can do each story mode and challenges on your own and while there is game AI roaming the map, there will also be other online players on the map as well.
You could be in the middle of an intense police chase and an online player can suddenly drive up and take out one of the cops for you, on the other hand though you could be in the middle of a race and an online player may challenge you and try to take you out of the race. It does make for some very interesting game play.
I give Need For Speed Rivals a solid 4 out of 5 stars. It is a fun and adrenaline fueled game to play and the fact that it is one of the first PS4 open world games that came out with the launch of the system, you certainly can’t go wrong. The Racer story mode can certainly be challenging and with your heat level going higher as you progress, the cop chases do get very intense and if your not near a hideout to save all your points, it can be frustrating when the cops take you out and you lose all the points that you earned to try and buy new cars and weapons.
The Cop mode is more forgiving if you want a break from the Racer mode. With the single and multiplayer modes blended together, it makes for a fun and challenging racing game to have fun with. This is definitely an open world racing game you’ll want to get for the PS4 and will tide you over for the other great open world games to come. Get your copy of Need For Speed Rivals today!