previews\ May 19, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Need for Speed NITRO - WII - Preview

Pre-E3 2009 PreviewE3 2008 GameZone Previews

After several years of stagnating entries, EA has made the much-needed move of revamping the Need for Speed racing franchise for 2009. The publisher is doing so in a big way, announcing three separate entries spanning different themes, with Need for Speed: Shift hitting next-gen consoles, Need for Speed World Online for PCs, and Need for Speed: NITRO for Nintendo Wii and DS. At a recent press event held at EA LA, the publisher showcased the latest build of Need for Speed NITRO, a decidedly more arcadey and accessible entry to the series.

Need for Speed NITRO approaches the series’ stock formula differently than previous entries, presenting a variety of different control options, accessible gameplay elements, and a distinct art-style, which allows you to develop your own designs on your console and tag the environment with them.

Need for Speed NITRO Wii screenshots

Control-wise, NITRO offers up several different possibilities for gamers, making sure that anyone can be comfortable with the game. The game’s default option allows you to hold the Wii remote vertically (with the IR sensor pointing towards the screen) and tilt your wrist to move their car from side to side. Additionally, you’ll be able to turn the remote sideways and tilt it (a la Mario Kart Wii), or use the Wii-mote/Nunchuck combo.

NITRO’s racing model is very exaggerated and over the top, in an effort to elicit the same type of atmosphere and feeling as cartoon racers like the aforementioned Mario Kart. You’ll be able to pick up power-ups on the track as you race, like wrenches that repair the damage done to your car. Additionally, you’ll be able to “own the world”, basically tagging the environment with a custom-made logo as you maintain the lead in each race.

Need for Speed NITRO Wii screenshots

Need for Speed: NITRO also features a pretty unique look that separates it from the rest of the Need for Speed franchise. The look is a lot cartoonier than previous iterations of the series, with brightly colored vehicles and environments, and a smooth clip that stays at 60 frames per second. Look for it to launch this fall.

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