Take a little Tokyo eXtreme Racer, add some Gran Turismo, Spice it up with GTA, stir, and combine with a Need for Speed.

User Rating: 9.6 | Need for Speed Underground 2 (Greatest Hits) PS2
Sure, Need For Speed Underground was a good game, but when it came out it was missing a few key elements that other games had already implemented. NFSU2 has learned a great deal from its little brother, and not only has it embraced the features the original lacked, but it also mixed it up with plenty of other new features, to make itself probably the best racing game of the year. So, let me start things off by addressing the new features of the game. The biggest change you'll notice first in NFSU2 is its Grand Theft Auto like free roam. In career mode, you take control of your car and drive around town, searching for different shops and races. There are several shop types you'll find, Body Shops, Performance Parts shops, Accessory shops, and Paint shops to be exact. As you find the different shops that are hidden throughout the city, you unlock more kinds of car modifications. Luckily for you, once you find a shop, it gets added to your nifty GPS map, so not only can you look on the map to find it again, you can also have your GPS give you the fastest directions to it. You will also use this map to look through what races and events are available for you to participate in, more on those later. NFSU2 has a few new race types tagging along with all the old ones. We still have Circuit, Sprint, Drag, and Drift races, but now we can also play Outrun races, Street X races, and URL races. Outrun races are very similar to all the races found in the Tokyo eXtreme Racer series - you're driving around town or on the higway, come across a car, and race them untill one of you is signifigantly ahead of the other. Street X races are circuit like races that take place on extremely tight maps with lots of turns and few straightaways - very similar in most cases to the original drift maps. URL races, or "Underground Racing League" are like a race you would expect to have in Gran Turismo - essentially an extremely wide track with a few verying turn types and straightwayas, that you have to do several laps on. With the combination of these new race types and the abiity to wander around the city, some of the redundancy of the original is avoided - your not always doing the same thing over and over. For instance, while you have to complete the same races to progress in the game, you can go about them in any order you want. So, if one particular race is too tough, you can go do a few other races, which will usually unlock some more parts, and then tackle the race you were having a problem with. And if you get bored of one kind of race, you can just do a different kind for a while. If you get bored of racing entirely, you can drive from shop to shop customizing your car with some of the new mods, or just wander the streets looking for the cash that for some reason is just lying around unatended in large quantities. NFSU2 also adds plenty for you to do in the garage. Once you buy some basic performance parts, you can tweak them to your liking and test your car either on track or on the dyno. If your not so into tweaking gear ratios, camber angles, and turbo pressure, you can just use the auto settings to give your car a decent tune up to perform best in any of the race types. Of course, you can do it manually as well, which can literally take up hours of your life with all the features that are to be found. Thats not the only change to be seen in the garage, either. There are also a bunch of new aesthetic additions to be seen. All of the scoops, fenders, etc. from the original are back, with an extra dozen or so items in each of the older categories. NFSU2 also throws in lots of carbon fiber parts, adding carbon fiver versions of just about every non carbon fiber accessory. Another cool addition is being able to select from about a dozen headlight and taillight replacements, as well as different colored bulbs for them. Still want more customization? Well good, because you can also replace your doors with lambo style doors or suicide doors, and you can set up your hood to open in different ways as well, plus you can choose the color of your parts under the hood and add a neon in there for good measure. Still want more? Fine, they got ya covered. You can also make a custom trunk audio system from a selection of woofers, amps, crossovers, video displays, and nos bottles, and throw a neon in there too. Not to mention, you can put several types of hydraulics onto your car and cruise the streets while you bounce up and down. Wide body kits are back too, along with conversion kits to turn your ride into a totally carbon fiber bad boy. Still want more? Well... there's just no pleasing some people. NFSU2's musical score is similar to the last, combining a good number of genres and artists that should keep most players happy. You can still disable songs that get on your nerves, and you can choose if you want them to play only in menus, on the road, or both. There are also a few exclusive NFSU2 songs, one of which is by Snoop Dogg and The Doors, which happens to be a great remake of "Riders On The Storm". There are about twice as many cars as there were in the last version of NFSU, and while i havnt unlocked everything yet, i think its safe to say that there will be at least one car that pleases everyone. The cars handling and power at stock levels are pretty well done, and the sounds different engines and exhausts make is really nifty. For instance, a Honda Civic makes a sound similar to a weedwacker, while an Eclipse makes a classic "vroom" sound, and the GTO and Mustang make lower rumbling engine sounds. Now let me address my complaints with this game. Wait, i dont have any. All in all, NFSU2 turned out to be one hell of a game. I have yet to try the Online play, but i assume its just as good as the rest of the game, and even if it was for some reason poorly done, the game would still be excellent.