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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
on December 17, 2002
When I got Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on 10/11/02 I thought wow this game will be the bomb! And it was!
It has the best graphics in the world!
The cops are very dangerous and drive as badly as you do! They send helicopters that drop bombs on you, fire missiles at you, and drop mini spike strips in front of you! The cops also set up roadblocks and spike strips to keep you from breaking the law.
The damage is realistic, but your car doesn't get all bashed up if you run into a tree at 221 miles per hour!
There is a lot of traffic, so you'd better watch out!
I have beaten the game a long time ago, so I know the cars are:
The McLaren F1, F1 LM, Ferrari F50, 550 Barchetta Pininfarina, 360 Spider, Lamborghini Murcielago, Diablo, the new 911 Turbo, the concept Carrera Gt, Mercedes-Benz Clk-Gtr, Cl 55 Amg, Ford TS50, Mustang, Lotus Elise, Opel Speedster, Vauxhall VX220, BMW M5, Z8, Holden HSV Gts, Jaguar XKR, Aston Martin Vanquish, Chevrolet Corvette, and the Dodge Viper!
Need for Speed addition cars have special colors and improve performance:
NFS Vanquish, NFS Elise, NFS Cl 55, NFS Clk-Gtr, NFS Speedster, NFS VX220, NFS HSV, NFS XKR, Challenge NFS Ferrari 360 Modena, NFS F50, NFS 550, NFS Mustang, NFS TS50, NFS Viper, NFS Corvette, NFS Diablo, NFS Murcielago, NFS 911, NFS Carrera, NFS F1, and The NFS F1 LM!
These are the cars the police will have:
Pursuit Ford Crown Victoria, Pursuit Mustang, Pursuit M5, Pursuit Corvette, and a Pursuit Murcielago!
The ways you could win these are to win an event or get enough points!
To get points is to get air, run a roadblock, lead a lap, drive a clean lap (don't run into anything), accelerate to top speed, or beat the cops!
The fastest you could go is 240 M.P.H. with any one of the McLarens!
You must buy this game!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 30, 2002
Let me get one thing out in the open: I am a huge fan of Acclaim's Burnout series. The intense racing, blazing sense of speed, nerve-wracking crashes, and traffic-weaving are all amazing, and (I thought) unmatched among arcade racers.
Enter Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2.
EA's cop chaser came out about the time of Burnout 2: Point of Impact, which meant I was having such a blast with Burnout that I completely ignored NFS. But I kept hearing about how cool NFS was, so I gave it a rent, after exhausting Burnout, and was shocked out of my socks by the result: I think NFS: HP2 is a superior game, all things considered.
I will admit that Burnout 2 looks better, runs faster, and has a certain European style that I find highly appealing - not to mention the immortal Crash Mode. Hot Pursuit 2 might not have the technical advantages of Burnout, but what it lacks in style, it more than makes up for with substance.
First off, having licensed cars DOES make a difference. Blasting round a curve in a Ferrari is miles more sexy than speeding through the streets in a Sports Car. And what licenses: Porsche, Lambroghini, Aston Martin, Jaguar, BMW, Corvette! All modeled accurately, and gorgeously - there are over forty cars in all.
NFS's gameplay has more depth as well. While Burnout can seem at times like a tech demo for its superlative crash physics, NFS concentrates strictly on the racing. The well-rendered courses are long, with single laps lasting three minutes, and riddled with shortcuts that can make or break the race. Should I risk taking the narrow back road through the canyon and possibly nab first place, or play it safe and hope the other guys screw up? EA deserves a big hand for producing some of the most devious clever track designs you're likely to see.
You have a wealth of options to customize the races as well. All the cars have two different settings for handling: Classic (i.e. safe) or Extreme (for the powerslide freaks). You can race with commuter traffic on or off, car damage on or off, lap number, controller configuration, AI difficulty, weather conditions, camera views, HUD, car color.....I hope you're getting the picture. You can even adjust the licensed in-game soundtrack to play instrumentals only. Not since the Dreamcast's beloved Metropolis Street Racer has an arcade racer had so many options.
There are several race modes as well, which break down roughly into two categories: Hot Pursuit (i.e. the cops are lurking) and World Racing (no cops). Each mode has a 30+ race bracket with individual challenges, which get progressively tougher. The races also range from timed runs to GPs to some where you drive as the police themselves, chasing down reckless speeders under a strict time limit. Whereas Burnout can be beaten within a rental period, it'll take quite a while to unlock everything in HP2. And the variety, constant unlocked items, and non-linear branching gameplay ensures that it never gets repetitive.
While World Racing is noteworthy in its own right, Hot Pursuit is where the gloves come off. As you & your opponents (or a friend) barrel along the twisting roads, the police are waiting. You've got a radar detector that lets you know when you're targeted, as well as a scanner that contains some brilliant cop commentary: "27 to Central, I'm tracking a green Lotus Elisse that's doing 100+ and driving on the shoulder. Let's test his air bags." Ha ha - just try it. Elude the black & whites for a while, and they might call for a roadblock. Or a spike strip. Or a bomb-dropping helicopter. Yeah, it's all over-the-top, but oh man, what a rush: four cops on your tail, weaving around commuter traffic, dodging bombs from above, all while hanging onto first place by the skin of your teeth. Even the most traffic-choked Burnout streets didn't get this insane. Then you hear that police cruiser smash into a wall, and your scanner says: "27 to Dispatch - my cruiser is out of commission. Am unable to continue pursuit. Over." Awwww yeah!
Did I mention you can play as the cop and chase down your friends......even calling in the chopper and roadblocks to stop them? And that you can unlock Corvette and Murcielago versions of a police cruiser? Let the trash-talking begin.
My intent is not to bash Burnout 2 at all - it's a definite keeper based on the amazing graphics and Crash Mode - but as far as pure pulse-pounding intense arcade racing action, I've never played anything as fun and insane as Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2. Toss sim racing out the window and smash down the accelerator - this game'll give you whiplash!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on September 4, 2003
Forget your nice driving techniques, throw away the "Worlds' Scariest Police Chase" videos, cause here comes Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2!Race the worlds' best high performance cars from, Jaguars, Lamborghinis, Porches, and McLarens on exciting and sometimes grueling street tracks from across the globe. Whether you want to run from the cops? Or just race to see whos' the fastest, this game has got you covered. You won't get bored with it, it's constant racing action with awesome hills for soaring jumps, off-road shorcuts to out maneuver your daunting opponents (or Cops), and a hefty engine under your hood to take you to the extreme of street racing. The controls are fairly simple, especially if you've played some of NFS previous titles, but you'll have to be careful with some cars for they might be more sensitive to steering than others. Car handling is very near to realistic. Graphics are in a league of their own. Every solitary detail is expressed, from flying gravel, to the reflection of trees off of your car. Realistic is the key factor in this game.Music just rocks and you can never get tired of it. While playing, the songs particularly picked by EA seem to just drive the andrenaline out of you to race these fast cars.The COPS. Uh oh, you're racing with your buddies on the streets, but all of a sudden you hear the sound of a blaring siren! The cops are on your tail, and sending reinforcements! Now you have to turn up the heat and out maneuver the cops to win! But these guys aren't stupid, they'll do anything (and I mean ANYTHING) to get you busted! From road blocks, spike strips, to the desperate sending of their Helicopter to drop explosive barrels all over the road to knock your car out of throttle, these guys are experts at catching abusers of the traffic laws, and they INTEND to uphold the law. But most importantly...THE CARS! Did you ever want a 49 car garage? Well yes you can have it! Any high performance sports car from American models to the ever so popular European models. You start out with the relatively small and weak HP cars until you keep racing to build up points to unlock cars. Play the tournaments in both "World Racing" and Hot pursuit modes' "Ultimate Racer" to unlock the cars, and the tracks. Speaking of which, you get 30 tracks from beginner to expert, so whatever you feel like handling your car on, you have the option to chose it. Basically folks, this game tops all the factors of the essence and sheer power cars can dish out on the streets, and I'd highly recommend it to anyone who is a car fanatic.
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon October 10, 2002
For the first few hours this game is a BLAST. The concept here is a good old fashioned car chase, with you controlling cops or speeders. The game physics are very forgiving, making this an easy game for beginners to enjoy. This, however, is where the game also fails. Because it forgives so much (no need to steer, guardrails will bounce you back on track; no need to worry, you will magically catch up if you fall too far behind, you never flip, you accelerate about the same whether you are on sand or road, etc), it also never rewards you for driving well. You can race flawlessly for x number of laps, only to have some cheesy accident/cop/tree/competitor come out of nowhere to steal your victory in complete CPU cheeseball fashion. This game offers a wealth of cool licensed cars (Ferrari, Porsche, Lambo, etc), but since the driving/physics model is so unrealistic, they all pretty much drive the same (ie: brakes stink, cars oversteer like nobody's business) and make the game's career mode ultimately unrewarding.
The graphics are good, and the sense of speed is nice. The sounds are great and lead to the ambience, the control is arcadey (a plus or minus, depending on your POV) and the replay value is decent. It's a fun game, but don't look for too much depth or realism here (get GT3 instead).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on November 16, 2004
This is, to date, my favorite racing game for the PS2. Others are more realistic, a couple may even be faster, but for sheer fun this is the one I always come back to. The track design is superb, the shortcuts are numerous and appropriately tricky, the car selection is diverse and exotic, the control is tight superb, and the racing and police interaction cannot be matched. It's challenging without being frustrating, and even the most veteran racer will have some trouble beating the later challenges. There's plenty to unlock, and I find myself coming back to challenge and multiplayer mode over and over again. It's unfortunate that more recent NFS titles have lacked the track design (and shortcuts), the police element, and the remarkable cars that make this game such a good time. Here's hoping that, eventually, the franchise will come back to its roots and give us a Hot Pursuit 3.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 23, 2004
I looked at a review for this game and ever since have wanted it. When I found and tried it out I was VERY impressed. The graphics are unbelievable! Helicopters drop bombs and shoot missles at you. This game gets a five star for awesome graphics and great gameplay. AWESOME GAME!!!!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on November 7, 2002
The original Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit has to rank up there with the best all time race games. It was so much fun because of features like damaged vehicles, realistic physics, notable variances and modeling in the licensed vehicles, great police and competitor AI, gorgeous scenery and effects. Now, after quite a wait, NFS: Hot Pursuit 2 is here. Unfortunately, it doesn't live up to it's predecessor and namesake. To be fair though, let me list the positive qualities that make this game a choice for some players.

Arcade feeling -- If you like the driving games that you normally have to dump $.50 in to play, this is probably a game for you. Graphically, the scenery and tracks are very pleasing to the eye, though not quite what one might expect with today's capabilities. Still, it's hard to argue that it doesn't look good, if nothing else.

On to the negatives.

Arcade feeling -- Yes, this is both a positive and negative mark for the game. The original NFS felt and played with a palpable sense of control. You wanted to drive as fast as possible but worked hard to keep your car intact and damage free. Not so with this game. You can crash and smash to your hearts delight. There is no damage modelling or concerns that your vehicle will perform any less than when you started. How well you drive doesn't really matter so long as you generally keep the car pointed down the track.

AI -- The police are every bit as fast as you are, regardless of the vehicle you choose to drive. They have little problem harassing you and no matter how effective of a driver you are, the only ways to loose them are to duck through a short-cut or manage to somehow wreck them. This is lazy game design. Furthermore, police have the habit of ignoring all other drivers. Though countless other speedsters dash by a waiting officer, the cop will only stop eating donuts when you pass by. And thanks to the poor physics and game play, the majority of the time you will have a cop riding your car doors like an ant on a cake crumb. Being speedy has little to do with this game and outrunning any pursuit is more or less impossible. Don't mistake it -- they designed it this way, and this aspect alone is a huge sore point with the game's core play style and AI.

Physics -- While this goes along with the arcade flavor of the game, for those who might prefer it, the physics are still horrible. Yes, even an arcade game. Flamboyant wrecks spin you awkwardly and utterly unbelievably, sometimes dozens and dozens (and dozens) of times. It'd be mockingly ridiculous if they actually meant it. But no, this is just more laziness showing through. It's sad to say, but I recall driving games on the Intellivision and Atari that had better physics modeling than this NFS.

Gameplay -- The cars all perform like each other. Regardless how effective your driving, you won't find any reward. In some ways, when you win, a nagging sense will linger because you'll know that you were lucky, rather than skillfully achieving your finish. Skill has nothing to do with it, in this game. And it just doesn't have the same fun factor one expects from an NFS game because of the high luck-factor play. What a crying shame too.

Graphics -- While the graphics are notably good in many respects, some of the things that made the previous NFS games that much more delightful are absent in this game. No gut-squashed bugs tapping onto the windshield, dust plumes obscuring the view, or the other environmental details that helped create the immersive feeling that earlier games in the series provided. Overall, the graphics are nice and neat. Too neat to feel satisfying.

===============================

Overall? If you like arcade racers, this is "OK" to spend your money on, despite the flawed game play. I would probably recommend saving your money or buying another game altogether, however, particularly if you are a fan of the previous "pre-porsche" NFS games. This one is lacking in all the qualities that made previous players love and enjoy the NFS series.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2005
NFS:HP2 is a really awsome game. It is, of course, a racing game with high adrenalin and excitment, where you can race alone or with others, with or without cops in many different tracks. Plus, you earn awsome cars along the way. Yes, it has it's cons,(replay cameras aren't very good, Be The Cop, where you can chase the speeders, could be better) but I still rate it a five. I don't know why anyone would not like this game.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 31, 2004
Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 is the best racing game ever! If you are a person who's obsessed with fast cars and good graphics, than this game would be the best for you! I know every single car they have in the game and the Top Speed I tested on the straightest Track in the whole game!:<BR...>This was the best racing game ever so consider buying it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 29, 2005
I've played both the PS2 and the PC version of this game, and I prefer the PS2 version. *

The tracks are challenging, especially in later races where the cars are faster yet less 'controllable' in tight turns. The scenery is amazing, and things like rain, smoke, fog, and sun glaring into your eyes all add to the ambiance (and the challenge!).

But what does it are the cars, especially the "NFS Editions" which are slightly tweaked on performance and seriously 'blinged out' on looks. The bubblegum-pink Diablo is way dope - the sort of car you'd expect to see cruising around Miami's South Beach club district...

I'd say that of the NFS series, this one is the top-rank for playability, especially the point-unlock feature. The High Stakes "lose the race, lose your car" feature is missing, but it's not really missed. It's not one for the 'racing sim' types - for that, you'd probably enjoy Porsche Unleashed or the Undergound series more.

*(If you prefer to play on the PC, get a high-end system. On my mid-range system I discovered low frame rates and 'stuck' controls when there are other cars on screen - if you manage to get out front, things smooth out a lot.)
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