Need for Speed World (previously known as Need for Speed: World Online) is an active installment in the long-running racing video game Need for Speed franchise published by Electronic Arts. This iteration has been co-developed by EA Black Box and EA Singapore. It is the first MMORG in the Need for Speed series (though Motor City Online was originally conceived as a Need For Speed game and is available exclusively for Windows-based PCs. World was released worldwide on July 27, 2010. However, people who ordered the Need for Speed: World Starter Pack had an early "head-start" in the game, which started on July 20, 2010.
World takes on the gameplay style of Most Wanted and Carbon, focusing on illegal racing, tuning and police chases, and adds classic MMO elements to the mix such as special abilities. World also features the cities of Rockport and Palmont, the cities of Most Wanted and Carbon respectively, into its map design, along with a night/day cycle.
Before September 8, 2010, after reaching level 10 and access to only tier 1 and certain tier 2 cars, the player would not be able to progress further in the game and would cease to earn any more points. To continue the game, the player had to purchase the Need for Speed World Starter Pack. Without it, the player was allowed to play the game for as long as he or she wants, but the game wouldn't progress. On September 8, 2010 World had passed 1 million registrations. To celebrate that, the game was made free-to-play and the level cap was removed.
The game was first announced to be free-to-play. In October 2009, World was opened to public beta-testing limited to residents of Taiwan. There have been seven closed beta sessions in total. Except the first one, all were available worldwide to residents who sign up, meet admission criteria, and get accepted.
An open beta was started on July 2, 2010 at 10am PDT. The Beta was scheduled to close on July 6, 2010 but was extended to July 9, 2010. A stress-test was opened from July 13 through 14th, 2010. Players who purchased the starter pack were able to play the game one week before the official release. Players who did not purchase the starter pack were able to play on July 27, 2010.
World was received with mixed reviews. Some of the complaints included lack of innovation, few game modes and heavy level grinding, not to mention shortly after its release EA announced the game was free for everyone to play and the people that bought the game essentially got it right in the pooper no courtesy spit. Many technical issues were also noted, such as lag and ghosting.
- Electronic Arts Inc. (July 9, 2010). "Need for Speed World Launches July 27". Press release. http://www.needforspeed.com/post/need-speed-world-launches-july-27.
- Impulse Driven: Need for Speed World. Stardock Corporation (February 8, 2010). Retrieved on February 10, 2010
- Hahn, Drew (May 18, 2010). What is the Need For Speed Starter Pack?.
- Hahn, Drew (September 9, 2010). Need for Speed World Goes Free to Play.