Need for Speed: The Run cannonballs to stores Nov. 15

Black Box at work on cross-country race installment in popular driving series using DICE's Frostbite 2 engine; Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Wii, 3DS versions planned.

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Although Need for Speed was once regarded as an annual series, Electronic Arts apparently needs a more frequent fix of the racing franchise. The publisher today announced Need for Speed: The Run, set for a November 15 launch on the Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Wii, and 3DS. The most recent Need for Speed game, Shift 2: Unleashed, launched last month on Xbox 360, PS3, and PC.

2011 will see another double dose of Need for Speed.
2011 will see another double dose of Need for Speed.

Developed by EA Black Box, The Run will include a story mode set during a cross-country road race from San Francisco to New York. The game will be built using DICE's Frostbite 2 engine (the same technology at the heart of Battlefield 3) and will feature the return of the Autolog online functionality letting players compare their progress and performance with friends.

Although Slightly Mad and Criterion respectively handled the two most recent Need for Speed titles, the Vancouver-based Black Box has plenty of experience with the franchise. The studio has worked on the series on and off since 2002, producing titles like Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2, Need for Speed ProStreet, and Need for Speed: Carbon.

This isn't the first time two major Need for Speed games have arrived in the same calendar year. Last year saw the launch of the free-to-play PC game Need for Speed World as well as Criterion Games' Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit. In 2009, EA also released the original Need for Speed: Shift and Need for Speed: Nitro, although there was no overlap in the two games' platforms.

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