It’s no secret that Criterion Games is working on yet another “unannounced racing game.” In fact it would be quite a surprise to learn that Criterion was working on anything other than another fast paced high quality racing title. That’s why I was not in the least surprised when rumors began to surface about Criterion working on another Need for Speed title. Then at some point, when this particular logo surfaced from some dark recess of the Internet, the lack of surprise turned into excitement. If any Need for Speed title is worthy of a reboot, and a replay, it’s surely the smash hit Need for Speed: Underground. NFS: Underground was developed by EA’s in house studio Black Box and it launched across PC and consoles in 2003. Underground, as well as the follow up Need for Speed: Underground 2, completely revamped the way modern arcade racers played out. Gone were the exotic European sports cars and in were the common man’s Japanese tuners, closed circuit formula one style tracks were replaced with drag racing and drifting, and every car now had NOS to boost you through the finish line. For it’s time, Underground was a phenomenally new racing game. After Criterion‘s great work on the recent Need for Speed: Most Wanted reboot, which I’ve been enjoying thoroughly on my Wii U, I must say that I happily welcome them to add their take to one of the all around better Need for Speed titles to ever release.
Unfortunately, as of now, this still has to be marked as “rumor,” as there has been no official word on the project from either Criterion or EA. Yet, if this does turn out to be true and if I had just one nostalgic demand, it would be that they absolutely let me put spinners on my hatchback Toyota Corolla once again.
* UPDATE 04/12/2013:
In a follow up to yesterdays rumored Need for Speed: Underground reboot, Criterion Games Developer Alex Ward jumped to Twitter this morning and denied the existence of a new NFS: Underground. He had this to say:
And well, that’s that. A short lived rumor indeed, and to think I, and possibly some others, had my hopes up that it would or could be true. At least Ward was cool enough to let us know, rather than spout the typical PR “No comment” we received as expected from the publisher Electronic Arts.
Though, I still hope they’ll let me put spinners on my Corolla in whatever “unannounced racing title” Criterion Games is working on.
This article includes resources gathered from our in-house investigative reporter, George Eleftheriou.