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Need for Speed skips 2014; first year without one in over a decade

EA reveals it won't put out a new Need for Speed until 2015 to allow time for an "extended development window."

Last year's Need for Speed Rivals
Last year's Need for Speed Rivals

When you think of franchises released annually, you might only think of games like Madden and Call of Duty, but a new Need for Speed has come out each and every year for even longer than Call of Duty has existed. Now, for the first time since 2001, Need for Speed will skip a year as developer Ghost Games takes its time in creating the newest entry in the series.

As part of EA's report to investors today, the company revealed Need for Speed developer Ghost Games is being given time for an "extended development window" to work on the next game in the series, which will not be released until next year.

Expanding on that, Ghost Games GM Marcus Nilsson shared a statement on Need for Speed's website pledging to deliver the game fans want. "We are already deep in development on our next game and want to make this promise to you: we will listen to you. We're going to give you the game you've been asking for. It will be the game you deserve, but to do that will take us some time," he said.

Nilsson talked up the new game coming in 2015, describing it as "highly innovative" and an "experience built on a foundation we know you'll greatly look forward to."

Just because the game won't be out until next year doesn't mean Ghost plans to go silent. "From now on, you'll be hearing from us regularly because we need your help to shape the future of Need for Speed," Nilsson explained. "We want your input on future gameplay and features we know you're passionate about. We will keep innovating, always making sure to continue the celebration of cars and the joy they bring."

Need for Speed's streak of annual releases extends back to the '90s if you count the spinoff games. In 2001, EA released MMO racing game Motor City Online (which was at one time a Need for Speed game) in lieu of an official Need for Speed title. A year later, it released Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2, kicking off a trend of releasing a proper Need for Speed game annually up through last year, when it released Need for Speed Rivals.

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