Need for Speed Unbound is being released later this year, but is it an unofficial sequel to Heat? Need for Speed Heat came out three years ago and was a step in the right direction for the series, but fans will be wanting a new experience from Unbound.
So, is this criticism warranted? We give our take right here!
Is Need for Speed Unbound Heat 2?
Sequels aren't something that's new for the Need for Speed series. However, it's been a long time since we've seen a sequel in NFS, the last being Shift 2 in 2011.
The viewpoint that Unbound is Heat 2 isn't a positive one, it points to the opinion that Unbound is a re-hashed Heat. Instead of being a brand-new game, some believe that Unbound is a re-badged Heat on next-gen.
After all, the multiple delays and a reveal that was relatively late in the development cycle could point to a game that's rushed. EA will be desperate for one of their flagship series to return after three years away.
Why this viewpoint is unfair
There's plenty to get excited about when it comes to Unbound's latest trailer. There will now be more riding on each race than ever before, with players able to place bets on who will win the contest.
Speaking of contests, there will be a weekly qualifier event which players can enter to win prizes.
We've also got to mention the graphics, which will look a step above what we've seen so far on the next-gen platforms.
Like Heat, the day/night cycle will give players the chance to compete in both legal daytime events and illegal underground races at night.
While this is the same as the previous game, it was a very welcome addition and we're glad to see it back. Plus, we've got a very healthy 140 cars confirmed for release.
We also got a sneak peek at the fact that there's more than one way to go to complete races. Shortcuts are in the game, but that's something we've seen in NFS games for around the last 20 years at this point.
It's unclear whether Burnout features like takedowns can be used on opponents, but they are available to use against the police.
Criticism with foundation
EA's track record when it comes to minimum effort for maximum profit is poor to say the least. Their annual releases such as FIFA are often derided for showing little to no innovation over the previous year's title.
Even the Formula 1 game has seen this, with F1 22 largely being the same game as the previous year with new car models. Something else that won't inspire confidence is the confirmation of micro-transactions in the game.
It's a small detail, but we noticed that one of the races shown in the trailer has a huge variety of cars in it. Some may think that's a good thing, but having a 4x4 and a 30-year-old hatchback in a contest with modern sports cars is removing some of the challenge.
So, when we watched the trailer and saw the same cop chases as we'd seen three years ago in Heat, you can understand our concern. It's not helped by a HUD that almost looks the same as Heat's, if not a little worse.
Some would say that the irony of the tagline "No risk, no reward" is palpable.
Risk and Reward Trailer
If you haven't seen the latest gameplay trailer for Need for Speed Unbound, don't worry, we've linked it below for you to check out! You can make your own mind up for if Unbound looks like the same game as Heat: