Need For Speed Heat - General Discussion

Discussion in 'Need For Speed' started by FT-1, Aug 19, 2018.

  1. rallymorten

    rallymorten

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    Oh. Well in that case, I do apologise for not picking up on that one.

    ..so we're back to the argument that all that sets NFS apart from basically every other open world car game being the "outlaw aspect"? In which case, the question then becomes for how much longer that'll be exclusive to NFS and thus can continue to be a main selling point of the franchise as a whole.

    I'm not holding out a lot of hope in it, but Kylotonn is supposedly bringing out a new Test Drive Unlimited game some time soon-ish. The TL;DR version of those games is that it's basically Horizon, but with cops. Add the way Kylotonn generally handles "sequels", continue this thought on your own, and then ask yourself where that'd leave NFS.

    Define "sandbox-ish". Because depending on how you do that, I have a feeling I can make a pretty convincing argument that Payback is too, in which case that doesn't really work as an argument.

    1: In exactly which ways would you say Payback offers "a greater opportunity to create a unique ride suited to their personality"?
    2: Yes, but 2015 was limited in basically every imaginable way. Remember how all but the most cliché tuner cars had all but about three bumpers + copy-paste wings available? I feel like this is a highly subjective critique, as well as it is a matter of the direction each game is taking with regards to customisation. But even then, surprise third combatant, The Crew 2, has just about as much customisation on a car-by-car basis as Payback - if not more, in some instances. Aside from the green goo under your car. And yes, that's a reference to something.

    Because you yourself bring it up, which character, in the Ghost games (and we're not counting the cheap Black-Box-returnees!) is your favorite character, and why? What do they do that makes them more than just a two-dimensional cardboard cutout? What character development do they go through to make them more of a character at the end than they were at the beginning? What relationship do they have to the protagonist? How often do they appear in the game? How many story-telling clichés do they fulfill? What, if anything, makes them a truly memorable character?

    Now, listen: I'm not directly against this. In some ways, I would agree that finding a balance and sticking to it could work wonders. I'm just saying there are *a lot* of things they need to pick up on in order for that to be somewhat successful. Ghost Games have seemingly discovered this as well, given that they've seemingly decided the best course of action is to reboot their own reboot. I feel like that says a whole lot more than any of us ever can.

    ..you know how AAA publishers are the poorest people in the world and we're supposed to feel sympathy for them, right? *One* piece of the pie just won't pay the electric bills. Now, they've recently discovered that the more they sell, the more money they make. The more money they make, the more blow and hookers they can have for the next shareholder meeting. Why do you think Payback went so all-in (pun intended) on predatory gambling mechanics that they actually included a slot machine? TDU2s Casino is proud of just how blatantly obvious that one was.

    Part of the problem in NFS' case stems from Ghost simply not being able to release at an annual rate. That may sound like a sin on Ghost, but it isn't. Annual release schedules for a game the size of NFS is what ended up nearly killing Black Box, before Unicronic Arts decided to show mercy on them and put them out of their misery. It's called "crunch". Look it up. Either way, this is where the genius of two development teams alternating releases comes in: it'll not only minimise the crunch, but it'll - as I said earlier - also allow them to cater for both fanbases, in the way both "special snowflakes" want it to, *and* it'll allow EA to take *two* slices of the pie.

    As I demonstrated in an earlier post, there clearly is a market for both styles. The problem with doing a middle-grounds-hybrid kind of thing is that there's just so many other games a lot like it - but better in many significant ways.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
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  2. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    1) How much longer can they hold onto the "outlaw aspect?" I guess for as long as they are the only ones doing it. Forza is not moving in that direction, and TC2 moved away from it. As for the other game you mentioned, I'm sorry but I do not have an informed opinion about it as I've never heard of it.

    2) Forza is "sandbox-ish" to me in the sense that there's no overarching story. It's pretty much a big year long festival in which you go around doing whatever you want. There's no incentive to progress beyond the pleasure of getting more stuff and more accomplishments. This is in contrast with Payback which (criticism deserved or not) has a story and an incentive to progress in a single-player "campaign." - On a purely technical level, Payback has more incentives to play. Whether or not those incentives matter, however, depends on each individual player. Personally, I find the inclusion of a story (even a shallow one) entertaining, whereas the lack of one usually feels even more shallow to me.

    3) Payback offers more "personality" with the car customization because of the wider range of parts selection, wider usage of said cars (with mental looking off-road builds). I can't speak for Forza's wheel selection as I haven't purchased the game yet. But vanity items, unorthodox off-road vehicles, and wider variety of unique parts, including fictional ones, tells me that Payback still has the edge there. The "edge" is narrowing, but let's not forget that Forza has a huge studio and also came out a year after Payback. The Crew 2? Yes, it has a lot of parts options, but not a lot of room to pick and choose... meaning, you can't pick this style headlights with this other style of bumper, everything comes in packages. Wheel selection is abysmal, and the cars just never seem to have that low-slung look that NFS nails with the stance.

    4) I genuinely liked Jessica in Payback. She's the best character by far in my opinion. Mac was my next favorite. He said stuff that had me cracking up. Tyler was a bore, no doubt. But everyone remembers Ryan Cooper, and he didn't even say a word in the game. The characters don't have to be deep or complex, but they are sort of a NFS trademark, so I don't think they should go away from that.

    5) Agreed, again. 2015 did some good things to start turning the ship in the right direction, but Payback, IMO, actually has the ship on course now. They just have to keep building on this foundation. It's the only way real progress with ever be made again with the franchise.

    6) Of course EA is going to try to bilk every ounce of profit the can from any game. But the return is directly related to the amount of investment. Could EA double the size of Ghost or find another and larger developer to do NFS? Sure. And then they could, and would, very likely go toe-to-toe with Forza. But unless EA does that, they will simply have to be content with a smaller piece of the pie. Another strategy, as you have said, is to do two different types of games with two different developers. That may be the safer option - the proverbial 'not putting all of their eggs in one basket.' Whatever they decide, I personally feel that if Ghost develops another NFS, it will continue to improve and will be quite entertaining as a result.
     
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  3. rallymorten

    rallymorten

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    Alright then, let's spin that another way: for how long is that - on its own - going to be enough to sell NFS games? Can it never, ever grow old?

    ..so by "sandbox-ish" you mean "open-ended", "non-linear" and the like? Just clarifying that point.

    And that, right there, is the nail hit on its head! That it's a very, *very* subjective thing.

    Subjectively speaking, though, if the best NFS has to offer in terms of story is what was offered in 2015 and Payback, I'd rather they focus their efforts on the many other issues the games have. Heck, both 2015 and Payback felt extremely like afterthoughts as it is. One substantially more than the other, yes, but afterthoughts nonetheless.

    That's not me saying the story in either The Crew or Test Drive Unlimited games are masterpieces. Far from. That's me saying that, if that's how far the story goes, there's not really a lot of "story" to it anyways.

    Debatable.

    Debatable. Also define "wider usage".

    The Crew 2's Rally Raid vehicles says hi. Particularly the Ruf 3400K and BMW Z4. Because who hasn't looked at a BMW Z4 and thought "yes, that would make a fine Paris-Dakar racer"?

    FICTIONAL PARTS IN MUH IMMERSION NFS URBAN CAR CULTURE GAME!?!? Like the ones Black Box - crunch or not - managed to make an entire catalogue of in time for the first Underground game after just one year of development?

    And don't give me the whole "but that was 15 years ago, games are more difficult to make" excuse. Sure, the details are a lot finer these days, but I'd be surprised if they were still using the same tools they would've been 15 years ago. Moot point.

    Yes, but turn that on its head and you'll find that Ghost is a subsidiary of EA. They too aren't exactly short on resources to call in, if they so desire. Not doing so is entirely on them.

    ..I mean, technically you're not wrong, but considering that you can indeed get every headlight style with every bumper style.. it's a bit less organised, I'll give you that, but.. it's basically the same thing, wouldn't you say?

    1: Highly subjective
    2: Seeing as there is about 80 different wheels, I'd be surprised if you couldn't find just 1 that's even just slightly to your liking

    ..so now you're saying that what sets NFS apart is a matter of how much your rims can look up at the sky and underbody can scrape the floor? How long is *that* going to be enough to sell NFS games?

    You see, that's the funny thing, because of all the.. "people" the Ghost games have (and by god, do they have a lot of not-characters in there), I'd say Mac is the closest they come to a good character. For starters, he has some genuinely memorable moments (most of which are related to the Mac Attack), he's got the comic relief but doesn't overplay it too much.. no real character development whatsoever, but arguably the first truly memorable NFS character that isn't just a collection of clichés.

    So well done on bringing a grand total of 1 character to NFS, Ghost. You've actually done something good.

    (inb4 "subjective")

    You're forgetting that he was the first protagonist in the series to get an actual name. And you're forgetting the bit where the game he was in was genuinely unorthodox. And you're forgetting the bit where the announcer would yell his name every five seconds. And you're forgetting the bit where everything you did in-game would have "Ryan Cooper" plastered all over it. All of which kind of contribute massively to people remembering him, for good or for bad. Much like how people would probably remember Tyler if the shout-casting wasn't reserved for the final race and happened ten times as regularly.

    Then where's the issue in it? It's literally a win-win for everyone! Ghost gets to put their two years into the next NFS game, EA gets to make double the revenue, and those craving for a return to the cops-vs-racers games get their will.

    I fail to see how that puts NFS in a decidedly worse standing than just doing what it's been doing for the past five years.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
  4. ImaRobot

    ImaRobot Premium

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    I always thought sandbox boiled down to something that was "Open world with free choice" regardless of story or not. Payback essentially runs in the same vein in my opinion, because even though there is a story, it's your choice on what races you do, and what you do in the open world. There's really no more incentive to progress "beyond the pleasure of getting more stuff and more accomplishments" in Payback than there is in Horizon.

    As for those incentives, how does it have more and what are they? If it's purely based off the story alone, than I have to completely disagree. I'm the complete opposite - I feel the inclusion of a half-assed, cheesy, story will always be worse off than a game that doesn't.

    There's not really a wider usage for the cars, to be honest. When you buy a car in Payback, you're stuck with it in the class you choose. Forza lets you go willy nilly and inbetween any catagory with any car you choose. It's just all up to what parts you choose to apply to it. Hell you can have one car with multiple set ups - One for drift, drag, offroad, high speed runs and everything else- without ever having to get out of the vehicle. All you have to do is press start, and load a presaved tune. It takes seconds. That aspect alone is something I didn't really like about Payback. As for the wheel selection, I feel they both have gems and both have a ton that are just outright ugly.. I'm not sure what one is worse or better in that aspect. However, I do like that you can individually paint the rim lip and center piece. That was always nifty.

    So, to a certain degree,much like some customization options as Payback, albeit a bit more restricted? I do agree though, The Crew 2 was a complete let down in what you've noted here.
     
  5. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    I'm honestly not sure what all you are getting at Rally. I thought we were having a conversation about the potential merits of the next NFS game and how they can distinguish themselves from the competition, but it seems to me that your aim is to convince us all that EA and/or Ghost has absolutely no business making another NFS title because to do so would be utter failure. I dunno, but shoot, I'll continue to address your points:

    1) Well, Forza has been in existence for years. The Crew is in its second iteration. NFS has been doing the Outlaw thing for years, and has still managed to sell enough to keep it profitable. So how long can that last? Who knows, but we can call it a staple of the franchise, can we not? So my suggestion to them is to continue running with it. Can it grow old? Sure, I suppose. How old are the formulas for games like Assassin's Creed, Call of Duty, etc.. at this point? And yet they are still juggernauts.

    2) Yes. There is a difference between a "sandbox" game and an "open world" game. Payback, to me, is an "open world" game. There are no restrictions on where you can roam, but the story is linear and cars and parts are locked based on progression. You can choose the order in which to do story-based missions, but the end result is still the same. A sandbox game is literally "make your own fun," - there's no story-driven objective, you just inhabit the world and do what you want. I'm not debating the merits of either, simply pointing out that NFS can distinguish itself from the competition by sticking to the latest path Ghost has chosen, which is single-player story driven.

    3) Sure, then debate it. Personally, I feel that the cars in Payback show more personality than the screenshots I've seen of Forza, but you do you.

    4) I already defined "wider usage." And you answered you own question in the very next statement. You're right, I forgot about TC2 making vehicles into strange off-road builds. Payback did it first though, so... should they continue? IMO it depends on the setting. I certainly didn't mind them doing it, and enjoyed the challenge of off-roading.

    5) So, your argument is that fictional car parts shouldn't be allowed? Shouldn't count for any merit? I'm not sure what your point is.

    6) Yes, Ghost is owned by EA, and as I said as my final point, that IF EA wanted to, they could throw a lot more resources into NFS. But assuming that Ghost is what it is, the discussion is (I thought) about what they can do to survive in a crowded market.

    7) I genuinely wanted to like TC2, because customizing cars is one of my favorite things to do. But I just couldn't get into it. Something about the presentation, the choices, whatever... It just wasn't for me. And that's really the point, isn't it? Every single one of us like things just a little different for different reasons. Since that's the case, then who's to say there isn't still a profitable market for another NFS game? So I guess to answer your question, as long as I'm around and NFS nails the stance/customization features that I enjoy, then they can still count on a sale.

    8) Are you saying that the stance of a car and wheel diameter DON'T matter to gearheads? Mmm.. Okay.

    9) Characters/ Ryan Cooper. Okay, sooo... you're arguing that NFS hasn't done characters,.. shouldn't do characters? I don't understand what you are getting at. My argument is that, and I'm beating a dead-horse here, to distinguish itself from the competition, this is what they can do.

    10) Finally, the last point... Yes, again I agree that IF EA wants a bigger slice of the pie, they WILL have to invest more resources. If having a new studio tackle a different aspect of the franchise, then great.

    So, it seems that the final point is the only one we agree on. If you don't like the other suggestions, then what would you suggest as ways NFS can stick around and improve, while maintaining its identity?
     
  6. CleanCut

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    Really? I didn't know that. That's cool. I'm sure I will enjoy FH4 when I finally get my hands on it. I'm waiting for it to drop in price.
     
  7. cudwieser

    cudwieser

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    NFS holds the outlaw racer cr
    The wider use of cars was something NFS had right in 2015, but took a back (or side) step in payback. Me thinks they'd be wise to lift the class restriction in 2019.

    On a seperated point one thing NFS has that FH4 won't have...PS4.
     
  8. rallymorten

    rallymorten

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    I'd like to think what I'm doing is "challenging your view on the state and future of the NFS franchise and its contemporaries". If I happen to cross a line somewhere while doing that, do please let me know.

    While there is a point to be had there, that's exactly the point I want you to make. How long do you think those franchises can keep going off of the same-old same-old? Which brings us back to an earlier point about how all NFS does these days is attempt to relive the glory days - by remaking the glory days. Again, take a look at how Ghost decided to abandon the Payback route and return to the 2015 route. For some reason, they're unable to break the stigma.

    Also, I'm not saying NFS isn't about "outlaw-ness", just that there are various kinds of it. One outlaw drives supercars on freeways, the other drives hatchbacks in cities, and so on and so forth. "Outlaw" is just vague enough to fit the bill of just about every NFS game, and thus doesn't really work as an argument for any one of the styles.

    Finally, we're getting to the meat of something here.

    I'm going to do something crazy and completely unexpected here and somewhat agree with you, because, as I've said before, I don't mind there being a sense of progression (which I think is what you're getting at?). But here's the funny thing: Burnout Paradise has a sense of progression, and that one has no story whatsoever. Would that make it a sandbox or an open-world game?

    What I'm trying to get at here is that there are more ways to do progression than a bare-bones story. It's just that the latter is so deeply rooted in NFS that it's hard to see a game without it.

    Again, that depends on how one would define "personality". Sure, Payback has more options for bumpers and rear wings, but Forza lets you throw all manner of engines and drivetrains into just about everything. What I'm asking here is if the outside or the inside is what matters when defining "personality". Like, does Pamela Anderson automatically have more personality than Samuel L. Jackson? And yes, that's a metaphor.

    Yes, you see, Payback did it before The Crew 2, but you'll notice The Crew 2 is called The Crew 2 for a reason, which is that The Crew (1) came before it - in 2015 - and that too did both Rallycross, Rally Raid and - by the end of 2016, i.e. after a year or so - even Monster Trucks. So no, Payback didn't really do it "first".

    That's not me saying they shouldn't continue to do this kind of thing, because that was one of the things that set Payback apart from the rest of the NFS franchise and assured us it too had arrived in the '10s, but.. again, Ghost have decided they can't be bothered with being original anymore.

    No, you see, that was entirely a jab at back when Ghost said something about wanting only "real parts" in their NFS games, which, as history shall recall, resulted in 2015 having barely any parts at all. Contrast that to the Underground games, which had a small country's worth of more-or-less fictional parts and got by just fine. Some of them were more tacky than others, but you can't say you weren't spoilt for choice in them.

    See, we're going at this from two different perspectives. You're going at this from the perspective of "if EA wanted a bigger Ghost, they'd make it a bigger Ghost", whereas I'm coming from the perspective of "if Ghost doesn't ask for it, it's not going to happen". And technically, neither of them are wrong, nor are either of them more right than the other. I'm just saying that Ghost - should they want to - has the potential to kickstart the process, and that not doing so is on them.

    I'm not saying it doesn't matter for anyone. I'm saying that maybe, just maybe, there are things that matter more.

    And before we get into the whole it's-in-the-spirit-of-the-franchise thing, well.. it's factually not-really. It was a thing in Underground 2, then disappeared from Most Wanted onwards, only to make a one-off appearance again in 2015. So no, I wouldn't say the ability to have your rims look up at the sky is a significant part of the franchises' identity.

    No. What I'm saying is that Ryan Cooper is memorable for reasons other than his character. Because he also isn't a character.

    My point was that Payback feels like the first time they've tried giving characters a serious thought. Most of them are still nothing but a collection of forgettables and clichés, but there is one or two genuinely decent ones in there. Again, however, given that Ghost has decided 2015 is more of a NFS game than Payback, I'm guessing that's all going the way of the dodo, regardless of what either of us has to say about that.

    You want a game as a reference to what makes great characters in video games? Grand Theft Auto IV. If NFS can get even halfway to making *that* good characters, then yes, those are characters worth remembering. The problem is there's maybe a handful at best across the entire story-driven part of the franchise - and that started 15 years ago.

    ..and once again, a nail has been hit on its head.

    NFS has assumed so many identities that it can't maintain it anymore. It started out as a supercars-vs-cops highway racer, raced to fame as an import tuning game, dabbled with being a racing simulator.. how does one define NFS' identity?

    And that's exactly it. I'm not saying they can't do a middle-grounds thing. I'm saying it's a question of whether or not that strategy is sustainable down the line, given that there are a raft of games already similar enough to it in so many important aspects. Sure, NFS can probably find a niche and put that to good use. But how long is that niche going to stay around for?

    As I've said before, the market is entirely devoid of supercars-on-highways racers - courtesy of DriveClub being a dead franchise on a single platform - and pretty-much devoid of car tuning games - courtesy of Street Legal being decades old and Super Street being a mess in every imaginable way. They have the history to back up launching games in both categories, and frankly, I don't see why that would be a bad idea. And yes, that's kind of a reference.

    Also,

    ..and you'll see I've already covered that:

     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
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  9. ImaRobot

    ImaRobot Premium

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    Yeah. The difference being that they aren't pre-set classes, you don't select a class and your car already behaves in that manner, like in Payback. You have to select appropriate parts and tuning methods to get those down. It's a lot more detailed and intricate than Payback. That or you can just download someones tunes.

    you might be waiting a long, long time. Unless Christmas season brings some sales.
     
  10. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    708
    No doubt. But I'm really busy anyway making the transition to self-employment recently. Right now I'm still having fun in Payback (still haven't finished the story missions yet :X ) and also enjoyed getting my butt kicked in Frostpunk. Usually by the time I'm hungry for something new I can get it reasonably. But we'll see.
     
  11. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    I can't tell you how long COD and Assassin's Creed will continue. No one can. I guess until the Devs get tired of it, or the consumer gets tired of it. We can make suppositions all day long about the "what-ifs," but those things may never come. If another NFS game comes out and it's a total sales flop, then I guess we'll know at that point.

    I don't understand your point about the term "outlaw." The point you are trying to make is literally the equivalent of saying "You know Superman has powers and flies around Metropolis and he's called a superhero, whereas Batman doesn't have powers and flies around Gotham. So if they make a Batman game they really can't call it a "superhero" game. " - Whut? Who cares if the styles are different? It's still the same thing!


    Certainly. I don't disagree. My point is that if it's hard to see an NFS game without it, then they should embrace that tradition and continue it.


    I LOL'd at your choice of contrasts. Good one!

    Since Payback doesn't offer the features of Forza, I was using the comparable features of exterior mods as the basis for that argument. But yes, certainly, a gearhead could get more satisfaction out of an engine swap than a rear wing. The point still remains that there is room in the market for both. Believe it or not, I would wager that there is a majority of NFS players who don't care about the internals. NFS has always been more arcadish.


    Touche'. I don't remember much about TC1. And yes, I also enjoyed off-roading in Payback and feel they should keep it around. I guess it all depends on the next setting they choose. I think you are making assumptions about Ghost that are unsubstantiated however.


    I don't remember Ghost ever saying that. But you could be right.

    But you are making assumptions about the business relationship between the two entities that you have absolutely no way of knowing. How do you know Ghost hasn't asked for more resources? How do you know that EA would be willing to throw more money at them?

    But we don't know all of the nuances of what Ghost meant when it said "2015 was more NFS than Payback." You know what? I don't disagree with them! But that doesn't mean they are going to scrap the progress made during the development of Payback. Were they talking atmosphere? The parts system? The lack of Michael Bay explosions? Sure, any of those things are factors. Saying that doesn't mean that we are going to get 2015 all over again with the new name "2019."



    Hmmm... after thinking about it, I'm not sure it even matters to be honest. I've enjoyed the majority of NFS games I've played, but I have certainly passed some of them up because they didn't appeal to me. I guess there are certain features that I HOPE are retained, but given the history, there's just no way of telling LOL.

    I DO know this. I would not enjoy a supercars-on-highways racer unless it had robust customization options, free roam, and a good advancement system to encourage it not to become stale. I agree with you that developing two different types of games is a good idea. That said, however, consider the risk involved for EA. Look at Ghost and the mistakes made in 2015. Another studio would have a learning curve when it comes to car handling, etc., and there's no guarantee that they would get it right. If they release yet another NFS game that's woefully lacking, rather than resurrect the franchise, it may be just one more nail in the coffin. Maybe that's what's holding EA back from making that decision? Since Ghost is doing okay, maybe they don't want to rock the boat.
     
  12. rallymorten

    rallymorten

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    And that last bit is exactly my point. If all that separates NFS from every other game is the "outlawness", then the game style should be entirely irrelevant, because both of them are about being an "outlaw". You can't use the "outlaw" argument to boost the idea of a middle-grounds NFS without said "outlaw" argument also boosting every other approach.

    Ah, so "embrace the tradition" is a thing you can check on or off for each point, is it?

    Sometimes, good things come from being a little brave.
    • Payback came from Ghost daring to be just a little brave.
    • The Underground and Most Wanted games came from Black Box daring to be a little brave.
    • Need For Speed itself came from EA being a little brave.
    It just so happens that, sometimes, "being brave" involves breaking the "tradition".

    I'm not saying they should entirely abandon what they've built up so far. I'm just saying that :censored: off to a better, former you can only get you so far; 2015 - and how it so desperately tried to be hip with the Underground kids (and yes, that's a reference) that they forgot to actually make a game until about three days before release - is essentially proof of this.

    Also let's not get into how we're going to define "tradition" in this regard, because as far as I'm aware, NFS did just fine without a story prior to Underground. "Tradition" is a highly subjective term, I take it.

    Yes, but would you or would you not agree that the way in which the vehicle drives contributes as much to a vehicles "personality" as how many wings you've put on it? Would you or would you not agree that a 4WD car has a different "personality" to a RWD one, or even a FWD one for that matter?

    Fun Facts: The Crew 1 had freeroam police. And "bait crates". And a DLC that let you play as the cops. Basically everything you could've ever asked for. And who's to say Ubisoft aren't doing much the same trick again? Where would *that* leave a middle-grounds NFS?

    ..to be blatantly honest, the sample size there is rather "criminally" (laugh) low, given that these options haven't ever been included in NFS - so how can you be so sure they don't?

    Besides, if people didn't care about the internals, performance tuning wouldn't be a thing, right?

    Read F8RGE's comment here. Then come back and tell me what you read into that. I've already made my interpretation clear as daylight.

    Also, as we debated earlier, there is no such thing as an "essence of NFS", but more on that later.

    All I know is this:
    • EA Seattle was shut down after their port of Hot Pursuit 2 was merely "fairly alright", compared to Black Box' ":censored: brilliant" PS2 port. They got to make a total of 5 games, 1 of which was - relatively - disappointing.
    • Black Box was shut down after both ProStreet, Undercover and The Run all were middling games. They made 8 games in total, 3 of which didn't live up to EAs expectations
    • Criterion Games was shut down after Most Wanted 2012 was basically a rebranded Burnout Paradise (which in itself is not an inherently bad thing) rather than the "actual" Most Wanted successor they'd originally wanted it to be (most of it's on the internet, look it up). They made a grand total of 2 games (or 3 if we count their cameo involvement with Rivals), 1 (or 2) of which prompted EA to swing the axe on them.
    Based on the fact that Ghost has made 3 games (all of which - factually - have been middling-at-best) and are still around to see the development of a fourth, I think it's safe to say EA are being particularly kind with this one. Besides, the worst that can happen if they ask for more resources is that they get to add their name to the long list of studios Unicronic Arts has consumed and now exist only as a distant memory for people to desperately cling on to. Which, considering the two of us are relegated to being forgotten (hello internet a few billion years in the future! It's desperate times right now. Politicians are bad), isn't that bad a fate.

    ..am I supposed to see this as you going back on the whole a-middle-grounds-NFS-is-a-good-idea thing, or am I missing some substantial subtext here?

    True, true, and particularly the points being made about the parts system and Michael Bay-ness are points where I too would prefer them going the 2015 route. As I said above, however, do read the whole thing again and let me know what you take from it. Yes, it's early days and so on, but they're being *extremely* vague - so really, at this point, it's entirely too early to call. I'm just taking the expect-the-worst-but-hope-for-the-best approach.

    Alright, that's called a subjective opinion, which is fair enough. But do answer me this: exactly what sort of customisation would we be talking for that sort of game to appeal even a tiny bit to you? What's the bare minimum, you'd say? A wing or two, some select liveries..? And what constitutes as a "good advancement system", other than a I-wrote-this-while-on-the-throne-the-other-day story?

    ..not necessarily. As I said, they still have some leftovers of Criterion lying around. Evolution Studios are up for hire again. Both of which have a reputation for being masterminds in creating arcady-physics racing games. Get them properly cooperating, and I see great things happening. So what if it takes a game to get a feel for things? Ghost's had three attempts now, and they're just about worthy of a "pass". It's taken them five years, but they've gotten there.

    Inb4 "then why are Ghost still developing the games".

    That said, the boat's been rocking for 15 years, and these last few years haven't exactly helped the situation. NFS needs a serious sit-down, analyse what it does well (not just across the last two games, but across the entire franchise), what sort of games they'd reasonably be expected to compete against, and figure out where to go from there - and then dare to stick with that decision, come hell or high water. Constantly chickening out in favor of pursuing (pun intended..) the new, hot (..still not ashamed of it) thing is what caused this malarkey in the first place, way back when Black Box decided they wanted to turn NFS into Import Tuning - The Game.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2018
  13. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    708
    We could go on forever dissecting one another's arguments, but if you would indulge me I would like to outline what I would intend for NFS to become if I were in charge of the whole thing. (Massive wall 'o text incoming!)



    If I were tasked with making the next NFS title, and had unlimited resources to do so, call it a "game design Godmode" if you will, I would turn the whole thing on its head.



    …. I would bring back Need For Speed World.



    …. Nah! Not really...



    1) I would increase the size of Ghost Games to whatever size it would take to accomplish my vision. Why Ghost? Because they've been at it a while, and they have shown significant improvement in core areas. (Namely physics and activities.) Their world map design is excellent. They've offered decent post-release support, and despite a really poor record of communication, it does seem that they give attention to fan wishes.


    2) Next task would be developing an ideal handling model and game engine. Personally, I feel like the handling in Payback is juuuust about there, baring in mind that it's an arcade game and not a sim-cade or full sim. They need to fix brake-to-drift, and make grip driving actually worthwhile. Currently they are using Frostbyte as a game engine, and if that works, great. Whatever it is, it needs to be as easy to edit as possible, for reasons following.


    3) I would turn NFS into a basic service with perpetual DLC modular releases. Think of NFS as being a service, sort of like Windows 10. Cost would be reasonable for the base game. Upgrades and updates would be constantly morphing the base product as needed.

    For simplicity's sake let's say that 2015 was the base game, the initial release, only with ideal handling. The studio would then be tasked with creating monthly DLC updates of various content and size. Some of those updates would be car packs, some would be expanded missions, some would be customization bundles. Once per year, the studio would release a major update that could almost be considered a stand-alone game. The major update would include a new location, a narrative to go along with it, and story-based missions, along with any other major art design changes they wanted to implement, such as updated user interfaces, etc. At the mid-cycle, six-month mark, there could be a map expansion and a few corresponding activities released, maybe centered around a past or new NFS character.


    Now, you may be saying “How is this any different from NFS World?” Or "How is this any different than what they are currently doing, but calling something different?"


    Here's how it's different, how it would work, and why it would be beneficial:


    1) It would ensure consistency and quality of product. Right now we are in a time where the current gen consoles have years of life left in them. There is only so much more they can do in terms of graphical improvements during the console life-cycle. There is no need to switch to a different graphics engine, and no need to reinvent the wheel (pun intended) in terms of car handling every time they release a new game. By keeping a single design studio working on NFS, it would only further enhance the consistency.

    2) It WOULD cater to all fan bases, whether they prefer classic NFS gameplay or underground gameplay. How? With the updates. For example, say that 2015 was the base game, and Payback's game world, story, characters and activities was a big annual release. The next mid-cycle release could be a huge freeway/ canyon style map that circumnavigates Ventura Bay and Fortune Valley. It would be devoted to supercars, with outruns, canyon duels, and the like.

    3) As content is released, the game world becomes larger and more diverse. Whereas previously every game contained its own world, this one continues to build and becomes the largest map of any racing title. They could recreate all of the iconic cities appearing in past NFS titles - Rockport, Bayview, you name it. They would all connect. They would all have their own unique weather characteristics. Now granted, there would have to be loading screens from one large section to another, but that's a small price to pay for the convenience and excitement of reimagining all of those places on modern hardware, not to mention with all of the new cars that weren't around in 2005 etc. Which leads me to another benefit:

    4) With constant updates to NFS the service, when a worthy new car model hits the ground in real life, they can add it to the game as well. The list could expand somewhat in real-time.

    5) The updates would be modular and people could pick and choose what updates they wanted. Are you only into tuners and hate exotics? Then only buy the car packs that apply to you. Don't fancy the classic era? Don't buy the modules that cater to that style. While there could potentially be gaps in the world map, depending on what modules you buy, the loading screens would eliminate any open-world snafus that such "missing sections" could potentially create.

    6) It would honor the single player experience while also creating tremendous opportunity for online car communities. For example: The game would have a huge aircraft hanger (or other venues) in which a car show is held once per month, a full week in length. Multiple car shows all over the world based on server capacity. You can enter a single ride from your garage into the show, and the game servers would sort out the roster of entrants. There would be no driving involved... all the cars would be automatically loaded into the game world parked in place, and players would browse the show via a drone camera. Each "attendee" is essentially a "Speedhunter" - having complete freedom to look at everything and take snapshots. There would be a voting system in which show winners could be selected for prize incentives. I'm not too savvy on the technical limitations regarding server limits, but if it was an enclosed environment with no driving, I envision the car show being anywhere from 50 to 100 individuals, maybe more.

    7) Multiplayer could start out as unique closed course competitions, similar in style to the events in Prostreet. They could be completely independent of the game world. They would feature Drift, Drag, Grip, Speedcross, and even off-road(?) events, along with whatever new stuff they can come up with.

    8) In order to produce so many regular updates, Ghost would be divided into five major divisions: 1) Game world 2) Vehicles 3) Narrative 4) Events 5) Implementation. This would allow some of the smaller updates, such as car packs, to be released by the Vehicles division, giving the Game World, Narrative, etc.. time to create the larger expansions.


    Here's why a modular upgrade system would work for this genre:


    1) Racing games are fairly limited in terms of core gameplay mechanics. While developers can get creative with event styles, cars ultimately drive, slide, brake, and jump... and that's about it. There's really no need to build a new game every single year in order to introduce new mechanics. It's done because of money of course, but my point is, unlike fighting games in which they constantly come up with new moves for the characters, there's not a lot of "new moves" for cars necessitating a new release.

    2) Car game sequels revolve around new maps, new cars, and new parts. NFS the service would have all of that covered with monthy, semi-annual and annual releases. It would keep things fresh and exciting year-round.

    3) It would not rely on microtransactions, and would not be pay to win. There wouldn't be “speedpoints” and other crap that's common in an MMO game. I don't have the pricing scheme all worked out, but it would be fair to the developers and consumers. Modules would be released monthly, maybe with some freebies thrown in occasionally. Car packs could be $1.99-10.99 depending on size. Part packs could be similar or less depending on size. The mid-cycle release could be $25-30, and the annual release could be priced slightly below a typical AAA title, say $45. The point is, if the value was there, people would pay for it, and end up spending more on NFS than they currently do buying a $60 title every other year.

    4) The developer and publisher would be getting income year-round, which would encourage further development of the service. Unlike annual or bi-annual releases, the developers have to work using funding from the publisher and then hope that the game sells like hotcakes once it's finally released. The revenue stream for this modular service would be much more steady.

    5) Imagine the momentum gained from introducing a concept like this. Fans would be more patient, knowing that the game will be constantly improving and growing in size and scope. They would no longer be worried as much about whether or not the next NFS will scratch their particular itch, and whether it will be of any decent quality. Everyone's tastes would eventually be catered to, and knowing that the game is constantly morphing would give incentive to keep coming back to it.


    Now there's a ton more of the nitty gritty details on gameplay features to include, etc., but good grief I've gone on long enough haven't I?
     
  14. FT-1

    FT-1 Premium

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    Having skimmed through your post @CleanCut , I too think we've entered a phase where releasing a successor to Need For Speed World (i.e. a Game as a Service title) would be best for the franchise. If they do go down that route, here are some things I hope they address:

    • Even if the game is primarily focused on co-op and multiplayer, there needs to be some single player story. Actually, make that stories; when expansions are released (like every 6-12 months) there needs to be a new campaign. Need For Speed games have been sorely lacking in end game, this would certainly help in that regard.
    • The environment would need to feature a better representation of the Hot Pursuit era by featuring a fair share of open roads. Having a 50/50 split of city to rural roads would be ideal.
    • Visual car customisation should be present (to the extent or even beyond that of Payback) but doesn't have to be mandatory to complete the game.
    However, One concern I have is that a 2019 release would be a year too early, given how likely the next-generation of consoles are going to be released the following year. With that said, Ghost Games could pull a GTA V and release a port for the new consoles, but that would bring the inconvenience of having to buy the game again.
     
  15. rallymorten

    rallymorten

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    9,918
    ..I'm still not convinced this World-but-better-so-it's-basically-GTA-Online thing will be enough to significantly differentiate NFS from its contemporaries, but if we've collectively decided to go down the middle-grounds route, that's about the only "real" option they have.

    I do just want to add, however, if people are so hell-bent on there being a story, they'd have to put some actual effort into it. The stories in the last many games have been.. let's describe them as "various degrees of trying", with the only real stand-out in the last decade or so being - ironically - Rivals, for going down the psychological-warfare route. That's not to say it was any good, but considering most NFS stories have felt like one side-quest overstaying its welcome in an RPG where they forgot to make the rest of the game, at least it had *something* unique to it.

    Then again, what sort of story *could* you throw into a game like this that wouldn't just be a recycled version of a previous game, especially if we throw "ownable" cop cars and pursuit events into the mix - both of which are kind of an integral part of the Hot Pursuit side of the franchise?

    And then, of course, there's the argument as to whether or not a bad story is better than no story, which has raged on since the beginning of time and shall probably continue to be debated for all eternity.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018
  16. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    708
    ... And that's exactly what I was going to call my hypothetical NFS release - NFS World: But Better! LOL

    @FT-1 I agree on all counts. And I'm sorry for the wall of text but all of your points were addressed to some degree in my post.

    @rallymorten My favorite NFS story was MW05. It was novel (at least at the time) to have you start out in the ultimate race car, only to have it sabotaged and have to work your way back up. "The Blacklist" was a cool progression element. I think the biggest thing that sold the story were the characters though. Who could forget Cross casually keying your BMW down the whole length just for spite? And Mia's little flirts? - That was a FUN game.

    I think Ghost was trying to recapture that feeling with 2015. It was the same concept with using live actors and the character always staying 1st person and ambiguous. The execution was lacking somehow compared to MW05. If they wanted to stick with that method going forward, I wouldn't have a problem with it though... I'm sure with the experience gained from Payback, character implementation would improve.
     
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  17. Silver Arrows

    Silver Arrows Premium

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    Just go full hog and do Last Action Hero style, a NFS parodying and lampooning the ****** story beats that have been in the series since Underground.

    But again, the fact of the matter is that NFS is treading water, and the series and Ghost's insistence (mainly from fans) in trying to recapture past memories and glories, is killing it. NFS is a series that pretty much exists solely upon nostalgia, and it's practically killing any sort of idea that this series isn't just going to see-saw continiously from Underground, to Hot Pursuit, over and over again, while fans on both sides bitch about how Ghost doesn't get it.

    Basically, I don't bother with this series anymore. I play the games, sure, but i'm not like some people here who try to be like the Japanese soldier on the small island who didn't know that the second World War ended. The arcade racing landscape has moved on. If Ghost, and probably more so the fans, could get the hint and move on, maybe we could get something fresh and unique out of the NFS series.

    Like really, that seems to be the overriding sentiment from people, both on official forums, on social media, and here. That all people want is *just* Hot Pursuit, or *just* Underground. Nothing actually unique or interesting. Just the same **** rehashed over and over again.

    At what point do we realize then that the NFS series desperately needs something interesting and completely unique, which was what made it popular in our youth to begin with?
     
    SecretAgentZero likes this.
  18. TJ13

    TJ13 Premium

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    To me all I can see is somehow the new NFS will have a "Battle Royal" theme in there somewhere.
    Or maybe the whole game will be like that.
    Need For Speed Racing Royal.
     
  19. ImaRobot

    ImaRobot Premium

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    That makes no sense whatsoever.
     
  20. FT-1

    FT-1 Premium

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    Just discovered this song - Thoughts on this being featured in an NFS 2019 trailer?
     
    CleanCut likes this.
  21. AllEyezOnMeAA

    AllEyezOnMeAA

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    Please stop this nonsence, Need for speed games are ment for high speed cornering while maintaining speeds and momentum, not gripping, slowing down and loosing speeds on turns, Myself and many members of the Xbox NFS community race all NFS at a very high level and adapt to the gameplay, IF anything they should adjust there handling to what you will see in this video and all on my youtube channel, i am posting this because NFS 2019 needs proper input from the ACTUALL RACERS that still play and appreciate the games, here is how we race, FAST and CLEAN.

    Go to "AllEyezOnMe AA" on youtube to see.
     
  22. AllEyezOnMeAA

    AllEyezOnMeAA

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    I wasn't able to upload the video go to my youtube channel to see how we race !
     
  23. Silver Arrows

    Silver Arrows Premium

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    I'm not sure if you know this, but this is factually not true. In fact, I remember quite vividly seeing in the strategy guides for the Black Box NFS games, from Underground to Carbon, mentioning slow in, fast out, and from playing them, that such tactics were viable and usually the best way to go through a corner.

    To be quite honest, I really don't care about your boasting about how you and your crew race. The fact of the matter is that the handling in NFS 2015, in this specific case, is trash. Utter trash. Payback isn't that much better, but in comparison, it is a million miles away. Also, the fact that you attest to the fact that NFS games aren't about being able to drift and blast through corners willy nilly is wrong, when in reality, that is only a recent development.

    If you like the handling model, good on you. You, however, are not the majority, and the majority eviscerated the handling physics in both NFS 2015, and Payback to a lesser extent. They have also (rightfully) pointed out that all of Ghost's games in their patronage of the NFS series have had problems with handling physics, at best.

    If Ghost is going to take the 'proper input from actual racers' in regards to handling like you seem to want them to, then you can kiss the series, and Ghost goodbye.
     
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  24. T0MMY3688

    T0MMY3688

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    228
    The issue with Ghost Games NFS handling it the lack of predictability on what the handling model is doing, NFS Payback is better than NFS 2015 but it still quite unpredictable most of the time. I do hope Ghost Games could made a more predictable driving physics for 2019, even if they kept the same crap physics I'll still buy it for the car customization.

    The Crew 2 seem to have decent feel of Black Box era driving physics, where the cars grips well enough and slides in turns when you take it fast enough. Will be nice if we could get a game to have driving physics close to Midnight Club, Midnight Club LA handling feels rather loose and drift-y but they still very predictable.
     
  25. UnkaD

    UnkaD

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    This is the only complaint I have about NFS 2015, and I just started to play Payback and the offroad handling is all over the place. There needs to be consistency. I don't mind the super arcade speed drifting physics, as long as it always does the same thing every time. The worst is close twists or chicanes. Once you turn into the first corner it takes way too long to get the car to rotate the other way.

    It feels like the game switches physics completely when the car starts to drift, and when the car grips again(sometimes when you don't want it to) it takes a moment for the game to realize what it's doing. The car just wants to go straight for about half a second. Very annoying.
    But everything else, I just love. Even the speed cards aren't as bad as I thought they would be from what I was hearing.
     
  26. FT-1

    FT-1 Premium

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    Controversial Opinion: In their current state, I would almost go as far as saying Speed Card upgrades are better than traditional upgrades for a Need For Speed game. As you have to drive cars to acquire the most valuable cards, it adds more gameplay value than simply going to the tuner shop and equipping the best parts instantly.

    I wouldn't be surprised if Speed Cards (or a similar system under a different brand) make a return in 2019, BUT they have got to keep the same functions they have, such as being able to buy catch up packs and ensuring every part you win guarantees equal or better stats.
     
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  27. UnkaD

    UnkaD

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    I hope they bring back the full range of stance tuning options. I thought I would unlock the rest I remember from the 2015 game in Payback, but after some research apparently they left them out due to clipping issues with the air suspension. Screw that. Who needs a mod part that only works when the engine is shut off? At least make it an option if you don't have the air suspension installed.
    I want to play with the rake of the car and adjust the track widths again. And don't get me started on the forced camber when you lower a drag car. This feels like a massive step backward to be honest. It was so perfect in the last game. I can't help but resent their decision to include air suspension now.:(

    ...Anyway. Still enjoying the game so far.
     
  28. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    I've said the same thing before. I actually don't mind them. A good compromise (and has been done in the NFS series before) is to offer three tiers of performance upgrades and lock them based on car progression. (Notice I did't say player progression). I like being required to drive a car to upgrade it, and so they can force upgrades incrementally, each one building on the last and growing the performance exponentially.
     
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  29. CleanCut

    CleanCut

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    708
    Air suspension was a cool addition. But I totally agree that it shouldn't have been at the expense of the other options we used to have. I haven't missed it as much as I thought I would though, because the options in 2015 were still pretty limited. Once you lowered your car to the max it took all the rake out of the stance anyway. If they put the features back in and expanded the degree of adjustment, that would be great.
     
  30. T0MMY3688

    T0MMY3688

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    I don't mind they keep the Speedcard system but I do hope it is less perk dependent, the perks in Payback is way too powerful and crucial for a decant handling car.

    Also the whole process of exchanging parts with the correct perk and manufacturer part in Payback is really boring after sinking 100 hours into the game.