Hot pursuits


There are several reasons for the prevalence of “pursuits.” First, L.A. has a strong car culture. Its residents spend so much time in their cars that they’re like second homes, and nobody likes to be told what to do in his own home. Second, the county has some twenty-two thousand miles of highways and streets, and this gives a suspect the illusion of endless escape routes. Third, local police forces have been much quicker to initiate pursuits than many municipal forces…And then there is Los Angeles County Sheriff Leroy Baca’s theory: “We have more idiots here than anywhere else.”

– Tad Friend, __New Yorker__, on the art of police pursuits

I am now playing __Need for Speed: Most Wanted__, the eighth sequel in a franchise that stretches back eleven years. EA’s stance on videogame sequels is similar to that of the Roman Catholic’s stance on child-bearing: no regrets and keep pumping them out.

Intriguingly, EA seems to also be starting a soap opera serial of sorts, as you reprise the silent, nondescript character from __Need for Speed: Underground__ and __Underground 2__.

Once again, evil and presumably moustache-twirling rivals have once again deprived you of your car, which without it you are even more nondescript than usual. There’s a new, well-textured city to drive haphazardly in, new cars to drive haphazardly in, and a fresh female population to impress with said haphazard driving. But this time, you have to deal with the local law enforcement.

All in all, it’s a well executed package. The madcap police chases, complete with roadblocks, police chatter and smashy-smashy is worth the price of admission alone.

But some lingering questions remain. What is with your allure for mechanically and mammary inclined sidekicks anyway? How do you do it? Perhaps it’s the size of your cupholders. I had originally suspected that you were, in fact, a woman, but all the new graphical enhancements have put that rumour to rest: you can see yourself inside the car! Unfortunately, you look like __Star Trek__’s Odo, but in a hoodie.

And how do you fuel your racing habit? Perhaps you work at one of the many Burger King or Best Buy establishments that plague the landscape. Perhaps we will find out in the next installment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *