As of right now there is not a really good racing game on the video game canon. I am going to purpose in this essay that Need for Speed should be added to the canon. Need for Speed must be added to the canon because of the many awards the series has won, the style of gameplay, and the long history and tradition of the franchise.
Since 1994 Need for Speed has been making racing games. The franchise hit a decline in the later part of the decade. In 2010 Need for Speed was reborn with its new launch of Hot Pursuit (Crossley). Hot Pursuit became arguably the most successful game in the franchise’s history. The game won numerous awards like Best Racing Game of the Year named by GameSpy and Game Critics Awards (Crossley). Hot Pursuit also won the Most Improved Franchise award named by Giant Bomb, and the Multiplayer game of the year named by BAFTA Video Game Awards (Crossley). Those were just a few awards Hot Pursuit has won. The franchise itself has won many more awards. If your are reading this and have never played Need for Speed, then just let of the all of the awards do the talking on if this is a good game to play. Many of the other games purposed by my fellow classmates do not come close in the amount of awards Need for Speed has collected in past 18 years. Most franchises have only created a few games in a series. Need for Speed has kept their dominance in producing games since 1994.
Need for Speed is unique from other racing games because of its exciting gameplay. The one thing about Need for Speed that sets it apart from the other racing games is the police pursuits. These are races that involve the player being chased by the police. This makes the race even more exciting as you are trying to win without getting arrested. In the career mode, also known as tournament mode, that is where players race to unlock different tracks and cars. The races in tournament mode do not have police chases. It is all about getting the best time in the race against the CPU. This is what makes Need for Speed a very versatile racing game. You can play the tournament mode with just regular races and work towards a goal of unlocking new tracks and cars, or you can mix it up and race with the police chasing after you. Every other racing game in the world is just a few cars racing to the finish line. Need for Speed adds that extra adrenaline boost when playing because of the top speeds you can race at while avoiding the police. Eventually when you advance through tournament mode the player can unlock numerous amounts of cars. In addition, players can customize cars so they can have their own signature race car. Some Need for Speed games use physics during races. For example, getting hit by another vehicle and spinning out of control or damage to the car and how it affects the players driving later on during the race. Other Need for Speed games do not show a scratch to the car if it’s damaged. Most people just want to race and have fun trying to avoid the police. The average player most likely does not care about extreme customization like adjusting tire pressure or even damage to the car. Other racing games stress how realistic and detailed their customization is even though most players prefer to skip through the boring stuff and just want to race. The gameplay of Need for Speed allows anyone to pick up a controller and race. Also the player does not need to be an expert on cars to understand the game. Need for Speed is all about having fun and winning.
Another reason why the series of Need for Speed needs to be canonized is because of its long history and tradition. Need for Speed released its first game in 1994 (Pedersen). Since 1997, the franchise has released at least one game every year (Pedersen). The point to obtain here is that Need for Speed is a classic racing game. No other racing games have come close to providing a realistic and fun experience along with the dominant tradition this franchise has displayed the past 18 years. The Forza series for example is one the bigger rivals to Need for Speed. They have released four games and they only can be purchased for XBOX. Need for Speed makes their games accessible to every major gaming platform out there.
Need for Speed must be added to the canon because of the many awards the series has won, the style of gameplay, and the long history and tradition of the franchise. The series is considered a classic with its signature police pursuits. Over the past 18 years, Need for Speed has done a great job of providing a realistic racing game that anyone can pick up and play, and most importantly, making it fun for every driver.
1) Allen, Brian. “EA in “Hot Pursuit” of Need for Speed movie”. Gamertell. www.technologytell.com. http://www.technologytell.com/gaming/91843/ea-in-hot-pursuit-of-need-for-speed-movie/.
2) Kirk Pedersen. “A brief history of speed”. Electronic Arts. http://www.needforspeed.com/web/nfs-na/blogs/need-for-speed-news/-/nfsblogs/487668
3) Crossley, Rob (2012-06-01). “News: EA confirms next Criterion game: Need for Speed”. ComputerAndVideoGames.com. http://www.computerandvideogames.com/350592/ea-confirms-next-criterion-game-need-for-speed/