After playing this game, clearly this is what the first NFS:U should have been. Looking back, the first game had poor multiplayer support, ranging from a clunky server browser, bad lag and plenty of cheaters. The single player was linear and the racing model was simplistic and not very challenging. However the series has taken a big turn for the better. The developers added everything that should have been in this game in the beginning, and more. The free roaming mode is very well done, the available races and shops are all shown on your map as diferently colored dots, and a very handy GPS system can guide you to your selected destination if you don't feel like getting lost. There is ALWAYS something to do, you can head to a shop to customize your car, get a new car, take place in the various racing modes available or simply challenge other drivers on the road to the new "outrun" mode. The driving model has changed drastically, taking turns requires careful braking and counter-steering otherwise you'll end up in a wall, or worse, spin-out. You now have the ability to tune the performance of your car such as, adjusting the hardness of your shocks and struts, torque/RPM ratios, brake bias, nitrous concentration, center of gravity, top speed/acceleration ratio and alot more. You can also take your car on a test track and tune it while driving! This way you can immediately see the result of your tweaking. Just like in the previous game you can purchase performance parts, however this time you have the option of purchasing them indiviually. For example, if you're lazy, you can just buy the "Level 1 Weight Reduction Kit" or if you're more adept you may just want want to remove your rear seats, but leave the interior panelling in place. You have full control over what goes into your car. On the visual side of things, you will notice all of the old visual kits have come back along with alot more. Hydraulics, spinners, nitrous purging, doors, rear view mirrors, audio systems, split away hoods, engine and trunk neons, are all customizable in the game. The attention to detail is so great, you can even choose the diameter of the wheels you put on and the make and model of speakers you put in. As for graphics in general, the game uses an improved version of the NFSU1 engine, directx 9 is being used again for light glows, motion blurring, fog, even the refraction caused by raindrops hitting your screen. The engine looks alot nicer and can still be a challenge for higher end rigs when put on maximum detail. Although I wouldn't worry if you have a low-end system, there are plenty of graphical options available to get the game running at a decent framerate. The multiplayer has gotten a huge overhaul. PC users now can race with each other over LAN. The internet lobby has been given a makeover with a much more intuative interface and more race options, EA has also added an anti-cheat system that will disqualify anyone who cheats and warn other players of people who have cheated before. The sound is very well done, any upgrades you make to your engine will change the sound given off, and installing turbo will let you hear the blow-off valve everytime you change gears. As for the gameplay, it is very fun although it can get frustrating when you encounter a race you can't win. The AI doesn't cheat as badly as in the last game and can be quite a challenge. The race track aren't as straight and wide as in the first game, many of the tracks involve hils, sharp turns and difficult corners, although there are are a few speed oriented tracks that take you on the highway. Given the free roaming mode, the cars ranging from imports, muscle cars and SUV's, the infinate customization options, and the improved multiplayer, NFS:U2 has plenty of replayability potential. It's a well polished game with a good single player and multiplayer mode, alot of road to race on and many cars to play around with, even if you don't like the modding scene or racing games in general, this is definately a game anyone can enjoy.
Other Helpful Reviews for Need for Speed: Underground 2
This is the first game of the seriese I got and it was pretty fun! The races I did was not that hard. The drag races are very fun I never did thoughs kind of races before and I did pretty good!( Upgrading you car is coo... Read Full Review
This is a very good game. Great graphics. Has lol of cars to choose from. Great game. Masterpiece. Even better than the first underground. You can free roam in this one. I spent alot of time playing this game. Dont play ... Read Full Review