Tag Archives: need for speed

Need for Speed: Payback’s dumb shit

I love arcade racings games that are just pure distilled fun. For example Disney’s (Black Rock Studios) Split/Second: Velocity was one of such games. No drama or massive PR campaigns around it. It just arrived in to the gaming scene and took my heart. It was just pure racing fun. But since then, there weren’t many fun arcade racing games (hint literally just Need for Speed left), the rest are simulations and realistic wannabes like Forza. So, NFS:Payback was released recently and I wanted to satisfy my Need for Speed. And here’s the top dumb shit they included in it (or removed good shit from it). Because 2017 ya’ll!

Speed Cards & Micro-transactions

The game doesn’t work anymore in the way that you buy a car, go to parts store or garage and simply buy parts and upgrade it to boost acceleration, top speed, nitrous capacity, brakes and aerodynamics. NFS 2016 was pretty good in this regard and I spend hours and hours upgrading and fiddling with cars. But nope, now you have some dumb ass “Speed Cards”. And they’d be somewhat bearable if they made any kind of sense. Instead, these stupid Speed Cards have dual statistics. For example, you buy an ECU and it somehow also boosts Brakes if it’s that kind of a card. Or you buy a Turbo card and it somehow boosts your Jump statistics. And if you use 3 of the same “brand”, it gives you extra bonus. And all of this is just a cover for even more retarded “loot crates”. They don’t call them this way, but thats essentially what it is. You can “trade in” unused cards to get tokens which you can then spend on randomizer bullshit which gives you some random card for 3 tokens. You can also buy these tokens for real money and then go through the randomizer to use tokens bought with real money to give you some random Speed Cards if you feel like you’re dumb fuck who literally spends real money for some pointless randomly generated goods. I never asked for this micro-transactions shit. And neither should you. Because it’s making games rotten. Get this shit out of our games. I might stop buying EA games entirely because of it. I stopped buying Ubisoft games entirely. You’re next EA if you continue with this shit (and it doesn’t look like they have any plans to stop it). I’m really sick and tired of this crap. Season passes, DLC’s and shit, fine. It’s real content you can decide for. You know exactly what you’re buying. But paying real money for some randomized garbage with zero actual content value is just dumb. I can’t believe people are so obsessed over it and all game devs are just rushing to include it. I see where this is leading and it’s the future I DON’T want.

No cops what so ever in free roam

When I complained last year for Need for Speed 2016 having absolutely useless cops in free roam, EA representatives assured me that “next NFS game will have badass cops again that will want to take you down!”. Their Twitter rep said almost exactly the same words to my inquiry if cops are any good like month or two ago. Just to realize game after its release that it does NOT have cops in free roam at all. You can forget about insane random cop chases that could last for several minutes. There aren’t ANY cops in free roam. What the fuck EA?! You go on and spend time adding some retarded stupid “Speed Cards” and “loot crate” like system, but you remove cops from Free Roam entirely? Only time I’ve met cops was in scripted “missions”. NFS 2016 was boring because cops were dumb and so slow they didn’t give ANY challenge even for a freaking stock starting car. In NFS:Payback, there simply aren’t any cops. And even those in scripted missions are rather dull and uninspiring. They just chug along and you bump into them till they crash Ugh?. NFS3 in 1998 had more capable cops and we ran the game on freaking Celeron 333MHz CPU’s. Or Most Wanted from 2005 which brought us one of the most epic open world cop chases I’ve encountered to date. Fast forward to 2017 with game running on hexa core CPU at 4.5 GHz and they can’t make some god damn cops that want to chase you if you crash into cars too much or destroy to many objects? C’mon, what’s this bullshit!? Congrats EA, you done fuck up the game at its core already. People bought NFS games because they were fun and they had cops that you could piss off and then wreck them in epic chases while sweating in some dark corner as your cooldown timer was counting down. All this is now gone and you’ve turned the game into a fucking casino with cars. Fuck you EA.

Second thoughts about this game…

Bad thing that I can’t refund the game because I bought it from alternative store. Good thing is I didn’t pay the EA’s asking price for it. Because that would be just a straight rip off. And don’t even think about buying a god damn “Deluxe” version for 80€. I’ll track you down and bitch slap you if you do.

I’ve had some racing across entire map and have done some missions and also done quite a lot of “activities”, but I’m already starting to feel the “boring” part kicking in. Especially seeing how much of this stuff I’ll have to go through to even get to the fun cars. Almost half of the list are some normie cars before you even get to Porsche’s and other more exotic stuff. NFS 2016 had the edge because of traditional car upgrading without stupid Speed Cards, it was exciting to buy new cars and upgrade them while saving for new car till you ran out of garage slots to buy them. And cars had tweaking that actually affected car handling and behavior a lot. While driving model by itself is admittedly pretty good in Payback, none of that fun stuff is in this game. And this is making me angry and disappointed.

If this is “returning to the roots” as EA said when they rebooted the NFS franchise back in 2015 (first on consoles and then 2016 on PC), we don’t seem to be thinking of the same Need for Speed roots apparently…

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Need for Speed community is shit

Well, to be more specific, it’s shit in official NeedForSpeed subreddit. For the first time in history, EA (Ghost) is actually updating and adding content to the latest NFS 2016 game AFTER its release. And I though, awesome, finally devs might listen to recommendations and ideas. Just to be slammed in the face by the most moronic attitude I’ve ever seen in any game community.

The game originally shipped with just 5 garage spots. You could buy 5 cars and that was it. People complained about lack of garage space and they added 5 more via virtual warehouse slots from where you can exchange 5 more cars, totaling 10. Guess what, in a game which offers over 30 cars, you’ll probably want to buy all of them. So I’ve opened a thread there asking for 100 garage slots (it was just a figure of speech for enough slots to buy all available cars) and while vast majority of people agreed, there were retarded special snowflakes who got this bizarre idea in their heads that being able to buy all available cars will somehow ruin the emotional connection with cars and the depth of the game.

Bitch, please, the game has no emotional connection when you can’t even fiddle with the car the way you want it. Half of the cars can only be modified via car paint and rims. The remaining half has like 2 items max for SOME areas of the car. There is not a single car I own currently that can have ALL parts modified. There just isn’t any. So, how can I ever get attached to a creation that’s never the way I want it?

And then those same retards brought up idea that having just few cars opposed to all of them is somehow beneficial to everyone. Motherfucker, if you limit the number of cars, it’s only catering to your fucking taste. The rest of us who want to buy more cars are basically fucked. But if there is enough slots to buy ALL cars, you can still own just 2 if you fucking want. But no, apparently he has to be limited by a game, otherwise that fucktard is incapable of owning just 2 or 3 cars. Like whaaaaat!? And he keeps on going like a fucking broken record, calling in mods and everything because I apparently offended his feefees when I disagreed with him.

And then he digged out a message posted by NFS dev who said it’s “too much work” to raise a fucking already implemented limit. Holy fucking shit, if changing a limit variable from 5 to 50 or 100 is too much work for a professional coder, then what the fuck are you doing at your job? I could teach a baboon to code in C++ and make him reverse engineer whole game faster than these idiots would consider adding something as simple and beneficial to all players as raising a fucking garage slots limit. Fucking hell, no wonder no one fucking likes EA, they still have no fucking clue how to make gamers happy.

Bottom line, this is the first time I’ve witnessed in my entire life where community wants stagnation instead of progress. And I’m not even talking game changing progress that might be disliked by some people if it affects gameplay too much. This change would not affect gameplay at all and yet there are idiots against it like it’s threatening their very existence. Fuck me. I was already getting bored by NFS 2016, getting all cars was my last go-to achievement goal, but since it’s official now regarding garage slots (meaning there won’t be any), fuck this game and fuck the stupid community. It has a dead multiplayer anyway and it hasn’t been out yet for 2 months on PC, so that alone speaks volumes…

Need for Speed 2016 review

NFS_2016.jpg

So, here we are again. The new Need for Speed. I call it NFS 2016 because this is when PC got it, it was actually released long ago in 2015 on consoles. But since EA wanted to ensure better PC support, they postponed the PC release date to mid March 2016. But in general, this is a franchise reboot. So, no sub title or number for it. Just Need for Speed.

And off the start, I’ll just say that my experience is mixed as a whole. Part of me loves the game and other part of me hates it quite badly…

Visual and audible presentation

It starts with the presentation itself. Graphics wise, the game runs latest Frostbite engine. It looks spectacular and there is just no way in denying that. The engine is very fast and looks amazing. The game is set in Underground-ish world so you can expect night time only with lots of glare, reflections, neons and rain. The city is huge and has different areas from high speed highways, winding hill roads to dense packed city streets through central city or through industrial parts. The city on the other hand is kinda forgettable. Maybe it’s because of the night or my poor memory that is incapable of memorizing the streets. But I think it’s mostly because of the darkness which just sort of swallows the memorable buildings, landmarks and sections and in the end it all looks very similar. Dark and reflective. Which is strange, NFS Underground 2 was like that as well and yet I could memorize whole city very quickly. Hell, if I close my eyes I can drive through it in my mind and I haven’t played that game for 10 years at least.

Second thing, the audio. While car noises are very distinctive, I miss a bit louder engine noise and more distinctive supercharger/turbocharger whine. It’s there, but you really have to pay a lot of attention to hear it. And kinda kills the atmosphere. I want to hear the engines roar. Every petrol head loves that. But in general it’s pretty good. This experience however is again ruined by atrocious music design and usage. At first I was all thrilled when I first heard legendary tracks from old NFS games in the garage. But that soon became an issue by itself because those tracks are only being used in the garage, but never in the All Drive world or during races. While driving, I got the feeling there were 3 generic uninspiring forgettable tracks playing on some crappy 10 watt cassette player. I just don’t understand what the hell they were thinking. To me it seems like they finished the game and remembered they forgot to insert any music. So they picked bunch of old tracks and composed some crap for the driving part. And they were ok with it somehow. Very lazy EA.

Car driving model

Now, lets talk about the most important part of every racing game. Driving model. I’m happy to report they’ve done a good job here. Cars have very distinctive behavior and feel. They also behave vastly different depending on the drive type, FWD, RWD and AWD cars behave very differently and in general, they feel very good on the road. With wide range of car handling tweaks you can really tune car behavior to your taste and driving style. You can make them super sticky or you can make them crazy drifty. I like them somewhere in between. I need the cars to be responsive on corners and easy being thrown into a precise and controlled drift, but sticky enough so I get a fast acceleration when straightened. Only thing that I really dislike about car handling and drive model are the collisions with the world, something we’ve been complaining for quite a while and we are still waiting for the fix. A lot of times, you grind against the wall while racing and even though the wall is seemingly smooth, you just get stuck into it like you’ve hit a wall corner. I don’t know what goes wrong within the physics engine at that moment, but this shouldn’t be happening. I’ve never seen anything like it in any older NFS game. It was always just dramatic deceleration and lots of sparks, but that was it. Here, you’ll just crash for no reason simply for grinding against a wall at very tiny angle. It just feels awkward and weird and I really hope they’ll fix it in the future, because it’s a really annoying one. Same goes for slightly harder hitting of the wall sideways. It should destabilize the car and slow you down, but here you just crash most of the time. And I think this is still related to the same collision bug.

Cars customization

After car wide range of handling tweaks, we should also talk about car customization. And here is again the part which makes the game this weird mixed experience. They bragged about all this Underground-ish culture, customization of cars, bunch of stuff to do to your car. The reality is, car customization is VERY limited and horrendously clumsy. Each car has just 1 body kit available. ONE. And most of them look horrendous. C’mon, even The Run had 3 or 4 body kits and most of them were actually quite nicely designed from mildly aggressive to space looking. You want to spice up your car to be unique on the streets? Most of the time and I mean 80% of the time, you’ll see text “No parts available” when you move around your car. I’ve bought 8 cars so far ranging from tuners to muscle cars and sports cars and not a single one of them can be fully customized visually. Not even bloody Mitsubishi Lancer Evo which is a definition of a ricer. I understand Ferrari being anal about customizations on their cars, but I don’t understand it for all others. And even those that do have parts available, you’re again limited to mostly really ugly bits, one type of bumper, one type of side skirts, really butt ugly exhausts, no parts for lights and those that are available are stock lights with yellow cross taped over them (what!?) and 2 sets of identical lights. I shit you not, Lotus Exige S has stock front lights, yellow taped over ones and 2 sets of IDENTICAL carbon fiber. And that’s it. Anyone who played Underground 2 knows there were like 10 types of headlights and like 8 light temperatures from halogen to coldest xenon, at least 6 types of sideskirts and bumpers for front and rear. None of it is in this game 12 years or so later. Remember the dynamic modification of car parts from NFS Carbon where you could sculpt car parts? Well, this game has none of that either.

What they’ve put lot of effort into is car painting and stickies/vinyls for them. You can paint cars in countless many ways and people make all sorts of amazing designs on forums and on Need for Speed subreddit. But again, I’ve tried it myself and it’s so god damn clumsy I couldn’t be bothered to spend 5 more minutes in the editor. And I’ve just wanted to paint my BMW in the M colors from back to white front. Keyboard controls for it are utterly moronic, clumsy and imprecise. Shuffling vinyls through layers and doing symmetry on both sides of the car was a dreadful and painful experience. Aaargh, just awful. I know Underground series, NFS Most Wanted and Carbon had more basic vinyls systems, but they were at least usable and something inviting to do. In NFS 2016, it just isn’t.

The biggest grudge I have with the garage is possibility to rotate view when picking car parts. Camera is always locked when buying parts and you just can’t check how it looks from far away or at different angle. Because of this I’ve spent like 10 minutes shuffling rims back and forth because I just couldn’t decide at the given angle. Or for the body kit. You only see the car from the front. You can’t even know how the car will look like from behind until you purchase it and go into free look mode where you can rotate the view. When you waste 8000 credits for some crappy ass ugly body kit that looks horrible from behind, you’ll know what I mean. That’s so idiotic it makes my blood boil.

The Police and opponents

Every Need for Speed game that’s about illegal street racing also has to have cops in it. And I’m happy to report they are in this game! What I’m not happy to report about is how utterly crappy, incapable and boring they are. Not only they are so hard to find in the city they had to place police station icons on the map so you can even find them to complete daily challenges which usually involve something with the cops. And not only this, they also drive worse than my grandma and she’s not even driving a car. At all. They are slow and to do challenges or even initiate a police chase you have to intentionally crawl around at 60 km/h for 15 minutes and keep hitting them until you reach at least heat level of 3-4 where they can at least keep up with you for 2 seconds. They use some crappy Crown Victoria grade garbage and they don’t even bother apprehending you. And only way of getting caught is to get stuck in the impenetrable roadblocks by some stupid random chance. Gone are the insane high speed chases through downtowns and highways from Most Wanted 2005 where cops upgraded to Corvettes at higher heat levels, they started using Rhino SUV’s for roadblocks instead of normal cars and they even used helicopters to prevent you from evading at high speeds and a duo of Rhino SUV heading straight at you head on. There is just none of that here. Roadblocks are now just bunch of blue wooden crap with lights across the road that slightly slows you down when you hit it. And that’s that. Not even 1 police car next to it. Or concrete blocks with a police van. It’s the worst attempt at doing cops I’ve seen in my whole entire life. And with this part so horribly nerfed and broken, game simply doesn’t give the player that thrill of doing hot pursuits, because they are so dreadful I can’t even be bothered with them. I just do them for easy money for daily challenges and that’s that. Where in Most Wanted 2005, I could initiate a chase and have amazing fun in it for 10-15 minutes at a time. You can just forget any of that here. EA, seriously fix this shit. Like NOW.

Ai controlled racing opponents aren’t much different to be quite honest. Maybe I haven’t noticed it all that much myself, but I’ve seen quite a lot of complaining by others. The Ai ranges from retarded amoeba to idiotically capable drivers. They can be so bad you leave them behind by a lot in points or distance, but they can also be stupendously good for no logical reason. Especially in those timed circuit races where you have to get best lap time. The catch up system is a bit broken and needs some adjustment to make them feel more challenging, but not robot like.

The Story

I know not many people expect story in racing games, but if we again go back in time, Most Wanted 2005, Carbon and The Run tell a different story. And I loved those games for it. Especially Most Wanted 2005 which had really iconic and unforgettable cut scenes with original 3D game world and live actors merging. And I was very enthusiastic at first because the initial intro sequence brought back those memories. Until I realized it was just that. And that every next video sequence doesn’t really tell any story, just bunch of people doing some random almost unrelated stuff. And that’s suppose to tell me a story of some sort? Sigh. There is a hint of it, but it’s so uninspiring I don’t even care about it anymore. Your so called friends keep calling you and texting you and you keep showing up to places they say you should meet them up. And that’s all there is to the story. The cut scenes don’t interconnect races and happenings outside of the racing as they used to in Most Wanted 2005. One part of the game is racing and the other are video cut scenes and chats through phone calls. And they don’t give much impression they are related to one another. So much potential and they wasted it all. Even if some missions were scripted, at least it would be interesting and not this dull grinding of races. Hell, I absolutely loved QTE’s in The Run and I’d be the last person to appreciate QTE’s in any game. But I loved it in a freaking racing game. It brought story and action between races and it was freaking great. Why wasn’t that used here? Imagine all the possibilities with the cops, with other gangs with your “crew” of race friends. But nope, none of it is in this game.

Multiplayer

Lastly, the multiplayer which people say it even has lobbies, but I have yet to find them. You can invite people to races and even make crews somehow and even voice chat with people. Or so others say. In my experience, game has no lobbies. There is no menus like with NFS Hot Pursuit 2010 where you picked a game type, car class and waited for game to drop you in a lobby. Then you’ve waited for people to join up and start a game. It was very straight forward and it just worked. Instant races one after another. There is no such thing in this game. It’s again so clumsy and stupid I hardly ever do any race with actual people. And most of them initiated by others are Drag race or Drift which I’m not really interested in as much as I am in Sprint or Circuit races. I can’t selectively play just those. And that’s so stupid and infuriating. Stop making this seamless offline/online mode because it just doesn’t work. It never worked in Rivals and never will. Just bring back the damn normal menu lobby like in Hot Pursuit 2010 and be done with it. Doing random Sprints or Outrun races with real people is nice, but it just doesn’t outweigh the overall crappy and clumsy multiplayer.

Verdict

Like I’ve said, there are great parts of the game and there are really shitty ones. I keep wanting to give it a good review because I’m a huge fan of NFS series, but I just can’t because this game is mediocre at best. Which is very sad to say the least. I’m having some good time in it, but mostly me fiddling with various cars, their handling to emulate NFS Hot Pursuit 2010 drifty cornering and just driving around with no purpose, because I like doing that. But the game, if I judge it based on content it provides, it has very little substance. And for a reboot of the franchise, I just can’t shake off the feeling developers behind it don’t have a clue what Need for Speed franchise even is or should be. It’s giving me the impression not a single person from game development team has actually ever played any of the old (good) legendary NFS games like constantly mentioned NFS Most Wanted 2005. And that’s most likely the reason why it’s not as good as it could be. You make a reboot by taking all the best bits of old games and start all over. Not by dumbing it down or entirely scraping most of the good stuff we already had and loved in old NFS games. Because when you do it like that, you’ll end up with a mediocre or even really bad game.

Only thing that brings tiny bit of confidence is, unlike other times, EA or more specifically Ghost Games folks are actually reading feedback from people and are fixing stuff as well as adding new content (recent update brought expanded garage and new Drag racing mode as well as bunch of fixes). It most probably won’t change things like story, but there is a possibility they’ll fix moronic cops which could up the game value by at least 10x as far as I’m concerned. I love cop chases and so do other people. Bringing in more car customization parts is also a possibility. So, unlike other times when game remained the same after release, this game will evolve for the better. Slowly and in small steps, but at least something is happening.

It’s not a great game, but it’s not absolute crap either. It has its moments. Just decide if those that aren’t crap are important enough to you to justify the purchase of this game.

Disable film grain effect in Need for Speed 2016

Not sure why this isn’t in the game’s graphics settings, but if you want to get rid of weird shimmering effect on reflections and world in general, you’ll have to disable film grain effect for this game. It may add a certain gritty feel to the game, but not everyone like it and like I said, it creates some sort of minor artifacting on the screen which can be annoying sometimes. I’ve made two screenshots, but on still images, you really have to zoom in to see the difference where in real-time gameplay, it’s easily noticeable. So, best to try both and decide yourself which effect you like the most. I hope Ghost will add this setting to the in-game graphics settings so you don’t have to fiddle with setting files using Notepad…

How to:

Go to…
.\Documents\Need For Speed\settings

…open PROFILEOPTIONS_profile using Notepad.

Search for text 3GstRender.FilmGrain using Ctrl+F function (text searching field).

It will look like this:

NFS2016_FilmGrain.png

See that 1 at the end of 3GstRender.FilmGrain? You have to change it from 1 to 0 (zero).

In the end, it should look like this:

NFS2016_FilmGrain_OFF.png

Click File and Save. Play the game πŸ™‚

 

NFS Hot Pursuit 2010 Car Unlocker Patch

I got kind of a nostalgia bug recently and decided to try NFS Hot Pursuit 2010 again online. I remember having tons of fun for years but like since 2014, I haven’t played it anymore. Till today. There are actually people still playing this game, 6 years after release! And it was quite fun. Hot Pursuit mode was infuriating like before, but normal Race mode was super fun. It brought back so many memories.

Anyway, while I was in the process of setting up the game I’ve noticed I still have a special patch that unlocks tons of cars that are otherwise hidden away from regular players.

Hard top Dodge Viper GTS, hard top Audi R8, hard top Cheverolet Corvette Z06, hard top Lamborghini Reventon, hard top Aston Martin Volante. There are also Porsche Panamera Turbo and Maserati Quattroporte which were previously only available as Pursuit cars. Plus many many more.

What’s also cool about this patch is that these special cars appear for other players even if they don’t have this patch. So, your selection of hidden cars doesn’t depend on others also having the patch. Though I’m sure they’ll be confused a bit how you can drive these cars and they can’t. πŸ˜›

It’s incredibly hard to find this patch since its “official” webpage went offline. So, I’ve decided to share it with you guys. Maybe some of you will still find it useful. Enjoy.

DOWNLOAD:
NFS Hot Pursuit 2010 Car Unlocker Patch

Need for Speed 3: NextGen released!

NFS3

After long time, Need for Speed 3: NextGen patch has finally been released!

RejZoR and Evgeny Vrublevsky bring you the old epic racing classic from the late 90’s with latest Windows support, new enhanced graphics support, new visuals, new features, less restrictions and more fun!

Highlights

  • Proper full support for modern Windows operating systems, including latest Windows 10 in 32 and 64bit
  • Fully portable, no more ties to the registry
  • Full widescreen support with resolutions up to 4K (UHD) and beyond
  • Enhanced Direct3D 6 mode with advanced fogging and lighting effects
  • No Ferrari/Mercedes licensing restrictions in Hot Pursuit mode
  • New 3DSETUP_NXG for easy rendering mode selection
  • Ability to add and drive traffic cars (optional)
  • DirectSound3D/EAX support via audio wrapper
  • Easy to use patcher/installer

New dedicated NFS3: NextGen micro page:

https://rejzor.wordpress.com/need-for-speed-3-nextgen

You can also access NFS3: NextGen micro page directly through My Projects menu above.

Enjoy!

NEXTGEN NOSTALGIA… SOON!

A small teaser on a project me and Evgeny Vrublevsky were working on for almost entire week. We were working on our own versions separately for ages, but this time we joined forces in a very successful joint project of two gamers who just can’t let go those epic moments behind… πŸ™‚

It’ll be a journey full of shiny metal, smoking tires, screaming engines accompanied with blue and red lights and sirens. It’ll bring nostalgic joy in hearts of all racers who loved the late 90’s era!

This time with full support for modern Windows operating systems, 32bit, full resolution, wide screen support with enhanced environmental visual effects. It’s something I’ve dreamed of for more than a decade!

SOON! πŸ˜€