The One Need For Speed Game That I Demand They Remake
Need For Speed has been around for a long time. Since 1994 to be exact. They have released over 20 games under the NFS brand; only one has stuck to me like glue over the years. It is a game that captures the essence of street racing and car culture. It made me feel like a midnight street racer with a low-grade tuner trying to make a name for myself. To me, it's still the best Need For Speed game ever made, and I DEMAND (yea, that's right) a remake! That game is Need For Speed Underground 2. Why NFS Underground 2 over any other game? The game was released in 2004, so it's already nostalgic. I was a teenager when the game came out and just starting to get into car culture. The game did a fantastic job of pulling me into that world with its graphics, customization, and underground racing feel. It also had a great soundtrack which is always important in games like this. Not to mention the map was huge! You could spend hours driving around, exploring everything it had to offer.
About Need For Speed Underground 2
Need For Speed Underground 2 is a racing game released in 2004 on Microsoft Windows (PC), GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Xbox. It is the 8th installment in the Need For Speed series and was developed by EA Black Box and published by Electronic Arts (EA). The game is set in an underground street racing scene and features extensive car customization and numerous race events spread across a large city environment. The career mode was its prize possession, pitting the player against a series of underground rivals in underground races while also gradually providing them with new cars and upgrades.
After the events of Need for Speed: Underground, Need for Speed Underground 2 takes place in Bayview. In Olympic City (the racing activities are in Bayview), the game begins with the player driving his Nissan Skyline R34. He races off, despite Samantha's warnings, only to be ambushed by a mysterious driver in a rage that totals his Skyline. He receives a race challenge from a rather ominous personality who offers him a spot on his crew but "won't take 'no' for an answer." The incident is confirmed by the driver, who has a one-of-a-kind scythe tattoo. The flashback ends with his phone call.
The game then fast-forwards to a month later when the player, now without a car, is given his first underground race by Samantha. After winning the race and impressing Samantha's boss, Rachel (a former street racer herself), the player is given enough money to buy his first car — a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII. From there, he races his way up the underground racing league in Bayview, earning respect and sponsorship deals from various businesses.
SCREENSHOTS: Need For Speed Underground 2 Gameplay
Why Was Need For Speed Underground 2 So Good?
Need For Speed Underground 2 felt like a game I could be proud of owning. It had all the car features seen in big Hollywood movies like Fast and Furious. It allowed me to make a sick whip and move up the underground ranks like Paul Walker. Except I wanted to be more ripped like Vin Diesel (Paul Disiel would be my name in a perfect underground world). It was just so good, and I want to experience it again. Plus, the underground racing scene has only gotten bigger since 2004 with things like Formula D and drift culture. A new NFS Underground would be a success! Anyway, the point is that I demand they remake this game.
What made Need For Speed Underground so good? The main menu was littered with Brooke Burke, who was super hot. She probably still is. Every racing theme movie or game needs hot chicks. It was also the first Need For Speed game to offer free roam, which opened up a new era for NFS.
The racing was intense.
The neon lights, cityscapes, nitrous oxide boosts, and over-the-top drifts made racing feel like you never had to go below 100mph. Working my way up through the underground to become the best street racer in Olympic City was a challenge. The drag racing was way too easy, but drift and sprint races made up for it. There was an element of street racing that wasn't present, which is why some argue the game wasn't great. That would be the lack of cops.
The music was cultivating.
The game had an excellent mix of hip-hop, R&B, and electronic music. There was even a punk song in there by The Transplants. It set the perfect tone for an underground racing game. I miss those days when games would come with awesome soundtracks, and that's all you could listen to while gaming. I do not always complain; when a game has a lame soundtrack, I appreciate the option to pop Spotify on to replace it.
The customization had a personality.
I miss the days when you could make your car look as ridiculous as you wanted, and no one would judge you. In NFS Underground 2, I had a pink neon Honda Civic with green racing stripes and neon underglow. It was hideous, but I loved it. The game let me express myself through my car in a way that few games do these days. You could make your car feel like an extension of yourself, which is essential in a racing game. The visual upgrades captured the tuner culture, from headlights and hoods to spoilers. There was a wide range of upgrades, but nothing as sophisticated as what is available in The Crew 2 and Forza Horizon 5. Still, for the time, it felt like an entirely new world of car customization.
VIDEO: Need For Speed Underground 2 Gameplay
NFSU2: A Remaster, A Remake, or A Sequel?
I think a remaster is out of the question. It would ruin the nostalgia of the original, plus there are some pretty cool features in today's racing games that I would miss too much to enjoy a remaster fully. I think a sequel would be great. I would like to see a return to the underground racing scene with maybe a new city to race in. There could be more focus on drifting and street racing, with cops being present but not as much of a nuisance as in other games. Or the sequel could be set in Bayview 20 years later, and the main guy's kid gets into street racing, gets kidnapped, and the main guy needs to come out of retirement to save him. Kind of like the movie "Gone In Sixty Seconds." See how original my ideas are? They all come from movie references.
Was NFS Underground That Good?
Need For Speed Underground 2 generally received positive reviews from some critics, with an average score of 82% on Metacritic. It received average reviews from most major publications and was noted as a flawed slap in the face to race fans. That's probably why racers love it so much. Street Racing is a culture, and even if critics thought the game mechanics were bad, racers didn't mind. The idea of customizing a ride and breaking the law with an underground street racing gang entices teenage dreamers. Enticing danger and street racing is also why Need For Speed shifted gears (no pun intended) and later released Need For Speed Shift, a game focused on legal circuit racing.
Whether or not you think Need For Speed Underground 2 was that good, there's no denying it was popular. The game put street racing culture on the map and inspired a new generation of racers. If a sequel were to be made, I think it would be successful as long as it stayed true to the underground roots of the original game. It would look great on consoles like PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X or even more fun with a racing wheel on a PC version. A sequel to Need For Speed Underground two would probably be the best underground racer if Criterion Games made it. With the advances in graphics and the 650 Fast and Furious movies launched since 2004, getting back to the roots of underground street racing could be a relief for fans.