Need for Speed No Limits is EA's mobile entry in its iconic Need for Speed franchise. You'll get behind the wheel of a vast library of rare, high-speed cars and take to the streets to race your way to the top. Along the way, you'll customize your vehicles, earn rewards, and unlock new tracks, missions, and challenges. Each race and challenge you complete takes you one step closer to earning the title of top street racer in the cutthroat world of Blackridge.
A fast-paced thrill ride with a few roadblocks
An adrenaline rush until you cross the finish line
It's immediately apparent once you jump into Need for Speed No Limits that this isn't just an average mobile game. EA went big for Need for Speed's flagship mobile title, and that shows in everything from the gameplay to the graphics. The game throws you right into your first race as soon as you boot it up, and from there it's a nonstop thrill ride. The graphics are gorgeous; neon lights glitter on rain-slicked pavement, the cars look almost real, and environments are detailed and immersive. It's easy to forget at times that you’re playing on a mobile device and not a console. Next to other racing games like Crazy for Speed 2 and Driveline, Need for Speed clearly takes first place in the graphics department.
The game isn't just pretty to look at. The gameplay and controls are easy to learn, and make for a more immersive experience. Cars are always at maximum acceleration, and all you have to do to drive is tap the left and right side of the screen to steer. On paper it might seem too simple, but the result is fast-paced races that will leave you on the edge of your seat. Since you don't have to focus on your speed, you can focus on overtaking rivals, launching off ramps, and avoiding the police.
You’ll earn tons of rewards after finishing races. This includes blueprints for new cars, new tracks, and material resources that you can convert into custom parts and paint to use on your favorite vehicles. The level of customizability and freedom is unrivaled, setting the game apart from more linear and restrictive competitors like GT Racing 2. Players purchase many of these rewards with currency earned in-game, but there's also the option to use real cash to buy upgrades at any time.
Unfortunately, the paid features are where Need for Speed starts to fall behind. You'll have to wait for an in-game timer to tick down between races, and that timer increases the more that you play the game. The only way to bypass the timer is to use real cash to pay your way around it. On its own, that feature wouldn't be a problem. However, the game's races themselves can be as short as thirty seconds. Taken together, these two limitations essentially create a paywall that can make it extremely difficult to play the game for any length of time. In fact, it's such a restrictive set of barriers that the game becomes almost unplayable unless you want to pay up. For a game that's so fast paced and adrenaline-focused, it's an unfortunate and frustrating setback.
The game's storyline also creates speedbumps that slow down gameplay. Sometimes these storyline events occur in the middle of races, pulling you out of the game and forcing you to skip through cutscenes full of forgettable characters and plotlines. Need for Speed could take a page from GT Racing 2 here. Like many other mobile racing games, GT Racing 2 pares down on the story to focus on the gameplay itself.
Where can you run this program?
NFS: No Limits is available as both a free and paid download for Android and iOS devices.
Is there a better alternative?
Need for Speed is hard to beat when it comes to the mix of graphics and gameplay. GT Racing 2 gives NFS a run for its money in the graphics department, but gameplay is based around more realistic races and isn't quite so pulse-pounding. CSR Racing 2 is also a gorgeous game, but places more of a focus on unlocking and customizing cars than actually racing.
Overall, Need for Speed No Limits is a high quality mobile game that feels almost like a console game. It's satisfying and fun to play, whether you're more interested in unlocking and customizing cars or just racing. The paywall features and lacking plot are unfortunate, but it's easy to overlook them after you experience the game for yourself.
Should you download it?
Yes. Despite it’s flaws, Need for Speed No Limits is an adrenaline rush that’s addictive enough to be worth playing.