Need for Speed: The Run Review
The racing is fine. The Run is an arcade-styler racer, and the cars handle appropriately. Handling isn’t as tight as in, say, Hot Pursuit, but it’s fine. Just fine. My only complaint is that I felt a little out of control in tight corners, as I almost always oversteered. That’s something I expect from a sim racer like Gran Turismo, but it seems odd here.
Races are appropriately tense, because the way the game works is that it never lets you get too far behind or ahead. You’re always in the thick of the action, and most races will be decided by less than a second. It’s always exciting, at least.
So what happens of you screw up or crash your car? Well, each race has checkpoints, and when you run too far off the road or crash or press the back button, you revert to the most recent checkpoint. You only get a limited number or reversions, though, so you still have to be careful.
I prefer this method to the rewinds that other games have been giving us recently. Sometimes you need to refresh further back than you can rewind, and this system works well for that. It’s a true reset.
But it can be kind of touchy sometimes. In some areas, it will reset you when you go just slightly off the road. In one battle I cut a tight corner just a little bit and it reset me, and I raged. The next time, I cut the corner even less and it still reset me. At other times I would take a corner a bit too wide and go just a few yards off the road and it would reset me. In other times, I could go way off the road and it wouldn’t reset me. I just never knew what the game is going to do.
In all, The Run is pretty short. You’ll get about three hours, maybe, of actual race time out of it. It’s short enough that you can compete The Run in an evening or two. Thankfully, there is more to do. Completing stages of The Run will unlock challenge series, where you’ll race against other (CPU) drivers and the clock for medals. These challenges take place in locations in The Run, and they’re as perfectly fine as anything else in the game. These challenges basically double the amount of content in the game.
And then there’s multiplayer. Multiplayer is race only with nothing else going on, so it’s not terribly exciting. It’s also weird in that you can join races in progress, which doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. But there it is.
The Run is an average racer. It’s fun enough, but it never becomes great in any way, and it squanders the potential granted it by making it a story-based game. Nobody’s going to come out of this feeling like it’s a bad game, but nobody is going to remember it, either. It’s simply unremarkable. It’s fine, but it’s no Hot Pursuit.
It has a story
Christina Hendricks is good in her limited work
I mean, it’s fine
Cops and mob guys are a welcome addition to races
Not enough scripted sequences
Story is wasted
Not enough Christina Hendricks
It’s an average game at best
Final score: 70/100
Follow Phil on Twitter: @philrowen