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
Tense races
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

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7 Comments on Need for Speed: The Run Review


On November 21, 2011 at 12:14 pm



On November 21, 2011 at 1:29 pm

This game is blooming aweful. It is the only game that i have ever actually wanted to get rid of. The cars handle like barges and the game eats up your limited ‘resets’ if you happen to stray a little too much onto the grass, ‘The Run’ is neither suspenseful or particularly challenging (apart from one or two cool races)and the story is thin to say the least.

There are some nice scenic visuals, but the texturing on the cars is not as good as it should have been.

Overall this is the worst Need For Speed i have ever played and i cannot believe i spend 30 quid preordering this. >.>

To add insult to injury it is fairly clear that there is going to be DLC only for the console versions and not for the PC. The game is ok if you want to spend 20 mins on a bit of racing ‘fluff’ but it doesnt hold a candle to the older NFS titles. Oh for the days of the wonderfully moddable Need for Speed: High Stakes!


On November 24, 2011 at 8:03 am

finally the new need for speed is going to be release.

thanks EA Sport


On December 6, 2011 at 12:06 am

You guys must have played a different game than I did because I loved it. So that means “nobody will remember it” is obviojsly incorrect. I’ll remember it because I don’t suck at video games. I never once felt like I lost control around corners but I also learned how to work the brake and hand brake together along with the nitrous to keep that from happening. Every car is different so some need hand brakes only, some need brakes only, and some need both in order to make the turn. I couldn’t disagree more with the review because it’s a very well executed game and it’s downright fun as hell to play. It’s incredibly enjoyable as long as you don’t suck at video games. This was by far one of the worst reviews I’ve read. It’s an awesome game if you know what you’re doing.


On December 21, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I saw a review by darksydephil and he gave it a 4/10 for the game.


On December 30, 2011 at 11:03 pm

Well I loved NFS The Run, but I reallllllllllllllllly miss the open carear mode where I can just go around and around and discover the city or do side races. I also miss customizing the car and all the cool stuff that need for speed offered in Mostwanted, Carbon, and Undercover edition, but since the NFS Shift was released there are no more of the cool stuff I mentioned earlier. Hope this comment being read by NFS guys and wish you keep making those cool games :)


On January 3, 2012 at 4:20 pm

This is an OK game at best. Graphics on the scenery I like but the cars are only OK. I absolutely hate having to help Jack escape – how juvinile. I like the concept – racing across America. But overall – an OK game.