Need for Speed Most Wanted is the type of game that is completely easy to pick up, and you don't have to be a gear head or a diehard fan of the genre to appreciate its finer points. Filled with cars and tracks to unlock, as well as a control system that goes down smoother than a cold brew on a summer day, this type of speed will definitely feel your need.
Stupid puns aside, the game is pretty much self explanatory; you enter races against other competitors or time trials and zip around the city streets with the sole intent of winning. The top three finishers of each race earn prize money, and if you go for the time trials, the faster you finish, the more cash you'll accrue. As your financial worth rises and you unlock newer races, new cars are made available for purchase. I love driving my 2005 Honda Accord, but living in vehicular fantasy is one of the many pleasures offered in the game. Racing is fun, especially when tilting your iPad back and forth, but staring at all those pretty rides can be just as nice.
If tilting your device is not your desired manner of driving, you can choose a touch and swipe method. With this alternate control, a mini steering wheel pops up in the lower left side of the screen, ready for your thumb to do all the driving. You also have two camera options for your races; under Bumper mode all you see is the road, cars, and buildings ahead of you. Choosing Chase mode gives you a clear eyed view of your vehicle, and although a damage meter pops in the race, getting an up close and personal look at your car's damage is usually a good way to go.
Racking up the cash is also important for upgrades on your cars, and purchasing more efficient nitrous or a reinforced chassis before a race just adds to all the cool customization features available for the game. My favorite purchase, although it cost a pretty penny, was respraying my new Hummer. And since the eye catching visuals are this title's main attraction, inspired cosmetic decisions, at least for my vehicles, are mandatory.
A good portion of the racing deals with smashing into your competitors as well as taking down the police cars and road blocks that block your path. Successfully taking them down gives your vehicle and instant nitrous refuel boost, which you access by simply swiping your finger upwards on your screen. Cars in the Need for Speed universe are not indestructible, so choose your battles carefully, especially since wrecking your car before reaching the finish line earns you zero cash.
Need for Speed Most Wanted succeeds in its overall simplicity, and thankfully EA has kept the franchise a lean, mean, driving machine for mobile and iPad users. The goal is to race, obliterate other cars, earn some money, and unlock a wide array of beautiful vehicles. It may be a road paved with bad intentions, but leave the going slow part to the nice guys.