VIDEO | X360, PS3, PC Monday, September 21, 2009 | 12:45 PM

Need for Speed Shift videos

Need for Speed Shift videos

Need for Speed: Shift was released last Thursday everywhere in the world and today we can finally show you some direct feed footage. As the first 10 minutes of the game may not be really interesting to watch, we have decided to show you different races with different cars so you can get an idea of the game's content. We'll start with a ride behind the wheel of the Lotus Elise on the Nürburgring track.
Update: Last video is up, with some reckless driving on my part in the beginning.

Developped by Slightly Mad Studios, this new game in the Need for Speed franchise definitely breaks up with the series' traditional vision of racing. Forget player-friendly cars that are easy to control, Shift wants you to learn to master your vehicle before can really enjoy it to its full potential.

Players have had mixed feelings about Shift since it was released, some being disappointed with the handling of the cars, others wondering if some reviews had been biased somehow. Hopefully, for those who tried to grasp the way the game was meant to be played, it soon became clear that they could have a lot of fun with this game. Shift's controls are a lot deeper than it seems at first but you need a bit of time to realize that it's certainly more of a sim racers than you'd initially think. No matter what people think, one thing is sure, no one is left indifferent when playing EA's latest racing game.

The great thing about Shift is that every car feels different: it is for example quite easy to drive a Lotus Elise but, when you first get your hands on a Ford GT or an Aston Martin, things get a lot trickier and you have to be careful not to accelerate too strongly in curves. Also, touching the curb can have more or less serious consequences depending on the car you drive. You can upgrade your vehicle to improve its performances and you can obviously tune it to your liking: there is a quick tuning option for those who simply want to change a few settings but you can also use the advanced tuning menu where even the tire pressure can be tweaked. So if you blame some of the cars for drifting too much when they shouldn't, you can manage to do what's necessary to "fix" it. There will always be some cars that will keep drifting a bit in normal races but you can learn to master it quickly enough and, in no time, you'll even have fun with it.

The number of cars available can't compete with the likes of Forza Motorsport 3 and Gran Turismo 5 but there are enough of them to make everyone happy. And again, the only fact that each of them handles differently makes the game interesting and it'll have you come back for more. One of the greatest features of the game is the incredible cockpit view: it's so dynamic and thrilling that you really feel you're in the driver's seat. On top of that, the engines sounds amazing, enhancing the impression that you're actually driving a real racing car and with the sense of speed you get from the game, I promise you get all the tension and stress you'd expect in such circumstances.

It doesn't mean the game is perfect, far from it. The first issue I have is with the frustrating AI. The development team probably tried to give the other pilots some kind of driving personality so they do not all act in the same way but I have more than once yelled at them because they either bumped into me or braked so hard all of a sudden that it was impossible to avoid collision. The silver lining is that they can make driving mistakes on their own, which adds a bit of realism to the races. The loading times are also a big problem to me: even when installing the game on your hard drive you still have to wait more than 30 seconds to start racing. Graphically, the game may not be the best-looking racer out there but the visual effects do add a lot to the feeling of immersion. There is just some occasional pop-up sometimes - in the rear-view mirror for example - but you won't pay attention when driving if you don't want to crash in the next corner.

As you probably understood, I definitely think Shift is worth a try, even if you have to wait for the promised demo that should soon be available on Xbox Live and PSN. One last thing, I played with the Microsoft wheel in the medium difficulty setting and I only kept the racing line and the Anti-lock Brakes on. The handling model I'm using in the video is the pro one. Enjoy the footage, more to come later!

Lotus Elise
Lamborghini duel
Ford Focus
Audi Replay
Aston Martin

All comments

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Commented on 2009-09-20 21:49:56
Looks awesome... great immersion.
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:15:13
If compared to Forza 3 - what are the pros and the cons between the games ? Which game is the better choice ?

Graphics *

Game Value *

Gameplay (realism, physics etc.) *

Overall score *
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:17:02
Looks quite nice but I think nothing more than a snack before Forza 3.

Btw, great recovery there at 2:50!

What are you guys using to record and encode 360 footage in HD? Been searching for something to record my 1080p/720p X360 footage but so far without success.
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:41:13
This is 30fps, right? Why would anyone buy this over Forza 3 or GT5? I really can't see any reason.
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:45:40
How do you decide when to shift when there is no rev meter in the HUD and the one on the dashboard is blurred??

Will wait for the demo to make a decision on this title. But with Forza and GT coming chances are low I will actually buy it.
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:47:30 In reply to moroboshi
Posted by moroboshi
This is 30fps, right? Why would anyone buy this over Forza 3 or GT5? I really can't see any reason.
Because some people love Arcade Style racers and that type of 'simple progression' carrer, and hate the simulaton and collect cars& manage monye aspect.

The real question, why the flying duck would anyone compare a NEED 4 SPEED with simulators?
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:48:53 In reply to moroboshi
Because it's a good game?
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:55:37 In reply to Qronicle
Posted by Qronicle
How do you decide when to shift when there is no rev meter in the HUD and the one on the dashboard is blurred??
Sound, like you would do in real life.
Commented on 2009-09-20 22:59:13 In reply to nostradamus
Shift is not really an arcade style racer actually.
Commented on 2009-09-20 23:33:13 In reply to citizenx
Posted by citizenx
Sound, like you would do in real life.
I find it kinda hard to do that when changing cars all the time, and in higher gears it can be hard to judge the exact point anyways (for me).
Commented on 2009-09-21 00:00:42 In reply to Driftwood
Posted by Driftwood
Shift is not really an arcade style racer actually.
An neither is a simulator... not even close.
Commented on 2009-09-21 01:44:32 In reply to Driftwood
Posted by Driftwood
Shift is not really an arcade style racer actually.
It's an arcade racer disguised as a sim racer. The handling and controls are so terrible on 360. I'm sure ps3 isn't much different because the triggers are worse. I wish they would give us full control of the wheel (yes I have steering help turned off).
Commented on 2009-09-21 02:34:01 In reply to nostradamus
Posted by nostradamus
The real question, why the flying duck would anyone compare a NEED 4 SPEED with simulators?
probably because they were aiming for a more sim feel to the game than the rest of the NFS franchise - backed up by the fact that the developers have a back catalog of PC race sims.

I thought a demo of this was already out? not been on Live since thursday so yet to try.. hopefully its waiting for me tomorrow. Heard very mixed things about it.. the main things going against it seem to be the glitches and crazy physics of driving under cars.
Commented on 2009-09-21 05:15:59
Yep, too many glitches and the driving physics are really bad b/c they try to blend arcade and sim together (like PGR) but don't do either one right. The physics don't have enough weight to do the sim part right and the cars are too light and sensitive for an arcade style. It's really a really sloppy mix that doesn't feel right or, more importantly, all that FUN to drive.

After messing with the settings and trying peoples' advice, the game can become a little better, but it is nowhere near as good as games like PGR, Forza, or Gran Turismo. Not even close....

I say rent it and screw around, but I regret buying it. Not at all worth full price. The amount of times the AI will ram you off the road makes me wanna smash my controller every other race. I don't know how many times I was in first place and on the last lap the damn AI would crash into me on a corner and send me into the dirt. No excuse for a game with "sim style" racing. No excuse at all.
Commented on 2009-09-21 05:20:10

This is what I'm talking about
Commented on 2009-09-21 05:41:56
Another perfect example of a developer making a good game and then ruining it with some idiotic design choices. The blurred interior to try to force some sort of distorted tunnel vision and the screen turning black and white when you collide with something are both horrible design features. The fact that they failed to include an option to turn these effects off is simply inexcusable. I especially don't expect to see lame effects like those in a game attempting to be a more serious sim racer.
Commented on 2009-09-21 05:45:56
The only thing that was intentional was the lack of effort to occlude the pit for the effect.

It was clearly rushed in some respects, despite EA's "effort" to put more time into their releases.
Commented on 2009-09-21 07:15:55 In reply to nostradamus
A lot closer than you'd think.
Commented on 2009-09-21 07:24:00
Not really convinced at all by this one, especially the reaction of actual players as opposed to the glowing reviews, very suspicious indeed...

I will try it if there is a demo but I really think finding a balance between arcade and sim if very tricky and it really makes more sense to go with one or the other, like Burnout for example. Also Grid received good review scores as well and I found the car handling in that one to be absolute dogshit so I am very wary of race game review scores.
Commented on 2009-09-21 08:51:13
Wow, that rear view mirror reflection is shocking. Everything just pops away. Looks good apart from that though.
Commented on 2009-09-21 08:59:50
I didnt really play it for long so I didnt got into it but one thing I noticed was the car sliding sideways all the time in corners. You know it wasnt like drifting, it simply went to a side which felt just wrong.

BTW I played it on PC with keyboard, so maybe that was the problem...
Commented on 2009-09-21 09:11:06
Game it self is quite good but EA failed again with the PS3 version, which doesn't have visual damage (deformations). There are only scratches.
Commented on 2009-09-21 09:46:14 In reply to emet
Really? That's bad if that's the case. Fucking lazy if you ask me.
Commented on 2009-09-21 09:49:58
All I can say is that this is a great, great game. The sense of speed is fantastic. It's handles way better than GRID. It's hard to describe as it's not a full on sim like forza, and I think it handles a lot like r-factor and gtr2.

What I can say is that the game is a lot of fun, with lots of varied events. Instead of always just a simple race, you also get 1 on 1's, time attack where everyone just gets 4 laps to hit the best time. Also, the real life and fictional tracks are great, brands, donnington and spa being my all tiem favourite tracks.

What you also get is challenges at each event, say like having to hit top speed or get 4 corners perfect.

Overall I would just say its a lot more fun to play than Forza, although I will still be getting forza as it looks incredible, but I can see it being a grind very quickly, especially as a lot of the old tracks are back in there.
Commented on 2009-09-21 09:52:16
At last...i hope people who said this will be better than forza changed their minds now!!

Clearly this is more like an arcade racing game

my only problem that you get too much money easily...which makes the game looses its value other many problems which was mentioned before

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