Need for Speed (abbreviation: NFS) is a multiplatform racing video game series with the first game The Need for Speed being released on August 31, 1994.

On October 21, 2009, Electronic Arts announced the franchise had sold over 100 million units, making Need for Speed the most commercially successful racing game series at the time, and Need for Speed: Most Wanted being the best selling game in the series with 16 million copies sold.[1]

Games

Game Release Meta Platforms
Road & Track Presents: The Need for Speed Aug 31, 1994 - 3DO, PC, PS1, Saturn
Need for Speed II Apr 30, 1997 71 PC, PS1
Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit Mar 25, 1998 88 PC, PS1
Need for Speed: High Stakes Mar 1, 1999 86 PC, PS1
Need for Speed: Porsche Unleashed Feb 29, 2000 78 GBA, PC, PS1
Motor City Online Oct 29, 2001 73 PC
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 Sep 30, 2002 89 GC, PC, PS2, Xbox
Need for Speed: Underground Nov 17, 2003 85 Arcade, GBA, GC, PC, PS2, Xbox
Need for Speed: Underground 2 Nov 9, 2004 82 DS, GBA, GC, Phone, PC, PS2, Xbox
Need for Speed: Underground Rivals Feb 24, 2005 74 PSP
Need for Speed: Most Wanted Nov 11, 2005 83 360, DS, GBA, GC, PC, Phone, PS2, Xbox
Need for Speed: Most Wanted 5-1-0 Nov 15, 2005 72 PSP
Need for Speed: Carbon Oct 31, 2006 78 360, Arcade, GC, Mac, Phone, PC, PS2, PS3, Wii, Xbox
Need for Speed Carbon: Own The City Oct 31, 2006 73 DS, GBA, PSP, Zeebo
Need for Speed: ProStreet Nov 13, 2007 74 360, DS, Phone, PC, PS2, PS3, PSP, Wii
Need for Speed: Undercover Nov 17, 2008 65 360, BB, DS, iOS, Phone, N-Gage, PC, PS2, PS3, PSP, Wii, Xbox
Need for Speed: Shift Sep 15, 2009 84 360, And, BB, iOS, Phone, PC, PS3, PSP
Need for Speed: Nitro Nov 2, 2009 70 DS, Wii
Need for Speed: World Jul 27, 2010 62 PC
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010) Nov 16, 2010 89 360, And, iOS, PC, PS3, Win Phone
Shift 2: Unleashed Mar 29, 2011 84 360, iOS, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: The Run Nov 15, 2011 69 360, 3DS, PC, PS3, Wii
Need for Speed: Most Wanted (2012) Oct 30, 2012 86 360, And, iOS, PC, PS3, Wii U
Need for Speed: Rivals Nov 15, 2013 80 360, PC, PS3, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: No Limits Sep 30, 2015 67 And, iOS
Need for Speed (2015) Nov 3, 2015 68 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Payback Nov 10, 2017 68 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Edge Dec 14, 2017 62 PC
Need for Speed: Heat Nov 8, 2019 74 PC, PS4, X1

Remasters

Remastered entries in the Need for Speed series are re-releases of games that had been previously released at an earlier date or for an earlier console generation. Their content is generally towards utilising as much of the original game as possible as well as including quality of life additions or alterations.

Game Release Meta Platforms
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Remastered Nov 6, 2020 77 PC, PS4, Switch, X1

Special Releases

Special Editions (Boxed)

Some entries in the Need for Speed series were sold through retail as boxed products with a unique edition alongside its regular boxed counterpart or re-released as a boxed unique special edition that included additional content.

Game Release Platforms
The Need for Speed: Special Edition 1996 PC
Need for Speed II: Special Edition Nov 6, 1997 PC
Need for Speed: Porsche - 40 Jahre 911 Nov 13, 2003 PC
Need for Speed: Most Wanted Black Edition Nov 15, 2005 PC, PS2, Xbox
Need for Speed: Carbon Collector's Edition Oct 31, 2006 360, PC, PS2
Need for Speed: ProStreet Limited Edition Nov 13, 2007 360
Need for Speed: Shift Special Edition Sep 15, 2009 360, PS3
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010) Limited Edition Nov 16, 2010 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010) EA Crew Edition Holiday 2010 PC
Shift 2: Unleashed Limited Edition Mar 29, 2011 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: The Run Limited Edition Nov 15, 2011 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: Most Wanted (2012) Limited Edition Oct 30, 2012 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: Rivals Limited Edition Nov 15, 2013 360, PC, PS3, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Rivals Complete Edition Oct 21, 2014 360, PC, PS3, PS4, X1
Need for Speed (2015) Deluxe Edition Nov 3, 2015 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Payback Deluxe Edition Nov 7, 2017 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Heat Deluxe Edition Nov 8, 2019 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Heat Collector's Edition Nov 8, 2019 PC, PS4, X1

Special Editions (Downloadable)

Some entries in the Need for Speed series were sold with downloadable content available through online stores that would include additional content for a regular edition of a game.

Game Release Platforms
Need for Speed: Carbon Collector's Edition Upgrade Nov 2, 2006 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: Carbon EA Downloader Edition Nov 1, 2006 PC
Need for Speed: ProStreet Collector's Edition Upgrade Nov 13, 2007 360, PC, PS3
Need for Speed: Undercover Collector's Edition Upgrade Nov 17, 2008 360, PS3
Need for Speed: Nitro-X Nov 15, 2010 DSi
Need for Speed: The Run - Heroes and Villains Plus Limited Edition Upgrade Feb 28, 2012 360, PS3
Need for Speed (2015) Deluxe Edition Upgrade Nov 3, 2015 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Payback Deluxe Edition Upgrade Nov 7, 2017 PC, PS4, X1
Need for Speed: Heat Deluxe Edition Upgrade Nov 8, 2019 PC, PS4, X1

Unique Localisations

Many games in the Need for Speed series are localised for multiple languages, but some unique localisations are re-releases that include altered content for promotional purposes in the region, are released only for a specific region, or have been edited into a region specific product.

Game Release Platforms
Road & Track Presents: Over Drivin' DX - Rally Edition March 13, 1996 PS1 (JP)
Road & Track Presents: Over Drivin' DX April 19, 1996 PS1 (JP)
Nissan Presents: Over Drivin' GT-R Dec 20, 1996 Sega Saturn (JP)
Nissan Presents: Over Drivin' Skyline Memorial Feb 10, 1997 PS1 (JP)
Need for Speed: Underground J-Tune Jun 24, 2004 PS2 (JP)
Need for Speed: Underground 2 Sha_Do Jul 14, 2005 PS2 (JP)
Need for Speed: Duel Aug 24, 2016 Android (CH)
Need for Speed: Online 2017 PC (CH)

Arcade Cabinets

Multiple games in the Need for Speed series have been adapted into coin operated arcade cabinets by Global VR.

Game Release Platforms
Need for Speed: GT Sep 30, 2003 Arcade Cabinet (USA)
Need for Speed: Underground Spring 2005 Arcade Cabinet (USA)
Need for Speed: Carbon 2008 Arcade Cabinet (USA)

Virtual Reality

Some games in the Need for Speed series have been re-released for platform specific virtual reality hardware.

Game Release Platforms
Need for Speed: No Limits VR Dec 15, 2015 Android (Daydream)

Compilations

Various games in the Need for Speed series have been bundled together and re-released as a single bundled product for specific regions and platforms.

Game Release Platforms
The Need for Speed Collection Oct 14, 2003 PC
The World of Need for Speed Jun 21, 2005 PC
Need for Speed: Collector's Series Nov 14, 2006 PC, PS2
Need for Speed: Deluxe Bundle Dec 1, 2016 PC
Need for Speed: Ultimate Bundle Dec 21, 2017 PC, PS4, X1

Promotional

Need for Speed: Top Speed was released on October 1, 2002 as part of America Online's online-only AOL Games' First Play programming initiative. It was used to promote both MacGillivray Freeman's 2002 IMAX film; Top Speed, and the all-new Porsche Cayenne Turbo.[2]

Game Release Platforms
Need for Speed: Top Speed Oct 1, 2002 PC

Films

Film Release Formats
Need for Speed Mar 12, 2014 Anamorphic (2D, 3D), IMAX (2D, 3D)
Need for Speed 2 TBA TBA

Card Games

Game Release Format
Need for Speed Trading Card Game 2007 Card Game
Need for Speed Trading Card Game: Beach Blitz 2007 Card Game Expansion
Need for Speed Trading Card Game: Canyon Rush 2007 Card Game Expansion
Need for Speed Trading Card Game: Downtown Rush 2007 Card Game Expansion

Gallery

Trivia

  • "The Need for Speed" is a quote by Peter "Maverick" Mitchell in Top Gun, a 1986 action drama film directed by Tony Scott about United States Naval Officers training at the U.S. Navy's Fighter Weapons School. It stars Tom Cruise as Peter "Maverick" Mitchell, and Anthony Edwards as Nick "Goose" Bradshaw, whom share a line of dialogue prior to a training exercise; "I feel the need... the need for speed!"[3]
  • The Black Edition of Need for Speed: Most Wanted was released to mark the series' 10th anniversary.
  • Need for Speed: Heat marks the series' 25th anniversary.
  • Early entries in the V-Rally series are often mistaken for being part of the Need for Speed series. They were published by Infogrames, and developed by one of its teams which would later become Eden Games. However, Electronic Arts bought the publishing rights to the series for North America and associated it with their Need for Speed brand to make up for the lacking interest for rallying at the time within the United States:
    • V-Rally, published in Europe by Infogrames for the PlayStation in July 1997 as V-Rally: Championship Edition, was published in North America by Electronic Arts for the PlayStation on November 4, 1997 as Need for Speed: V-Rally.
    • V-Rally 2, published in Europe by Infogrames for the PlayStation on June 30, 1999 as V-Rally Championship Edition 2, was published in North America by Electronic Arts for the PlayStation on November 16, 1999 as Need for Speed: V-Rally 2, and later published in North America by Infogrames for the Dreamcast on October 18, 2000 as Test Drive V-Rally.

References

  1. Article: gamespot.com (2009) Need for Speed series sells 100M, Shift moves 309K. Available at: https://www.gamespot.com/articles/need-for-speed-series-sells-100m-shift-moves-309k/1100-6237491/
  2. http://origin-www.timewarner.com/newsroom/press-releases/2002/10/01/america-online-launches-aol-games-first-play
  3. Top Gun. Directed by Tony Scott, Paramount Pictures, 1986. Film. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5e2qZXoK0GI&t=4s
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