Need For Speed: Most Wanted Free On Origin


“It’s Burnout Paradise 2,” John declared in his Wot I Think of 2012’s Need for Speed Most Wanted [official site]. “It’s Burnout Paradise: This Time There Are Cops.” I’m wondering: gosh, how ever did this game pass me by? Maybe it was speeding – ha ha!

Good news for me (and possibly you!): NFS Most Wanted is free on Origin right now.

It’s the latest in EA’s ‘On the House’ giveaway bonanza intended to get more folks on Origin, which has also included Jade Empire, Theme Hospital, Sim City 2000, Crusader: No Remorse, Ultima VIII, Wing Commander 3, Peggle – mostly older games. Maybe this is also part apology/teaser for delaying the new Need for Speed’s PC version. Not that I imagine EA are losing many sales by making this £8 games free. Oh gosh stop over-analysing this freebie.

Most Wanted does sound a bit wonky from what John said, but I’d be content with a few hours of rolling around and smashing through things.

As this worked so well to ward off grumps last time, I’ll simply quote myself:

“Yes, you’ll need an Electronic Arts account and yes you’ll need the Origin client, but if you consider either of those to be deal-breakers when it comes to free games, perhaps rather than going on about it – as you do every gosh darn time – perhaps try saying “You got me again, Ian Arts! You scamp you!” then shake your fist and make a grumpy growling noise and I’m sure you’ll feel a lot better.”

Apparently our news editor thinks I’m being “unreasonable” and “overly hostile” and “maybe not even joking? but you are, aren’t you?” as I keep threatening to stuff the mouths of you, our dear readers, full of your own knuckle bones. “You know you don’t like it either, that you’re not sure how you keep slipping into this aggressive performance, that you’re trying to break out of it,” she adds. Ugh. She’s such a boring know-it-all.


  1. lowprices says:

    Oooooh. I played the hell out of this on PS3 when it came out. I’ll definitely be picking this up and going for a spin. It’s my favourite Need For Speed, but Burnout Paradise is my favourite driving game of all time, so no surprise there.

    • Riaktion says:

      I just wish their was a way to start again properly, without your SP points following you around. I bought and finished this on Xbox 360, then picked it up cheap for my Vita, only to find all the Most Wanted Races had been unlocked already because of my progress on the Xbox… and it is the same on the PC version.

      From a progress point of view, I’d love to wipe everything and unlock the “most wanted” boss races as and when I would have has I progressed, like I did the first time round.

      Feels a bit weird having it all ready for me from the outset!

      Nice to have it for Free though, regardless.

      • Riaktion says:

        Ok I have managed to fix this, I just told my Firewall to block any and all traffic to and from the game and after deleting the saved game (produced when I first ran the game earlier today) from the “documents” folder it started me fresh and didn’t connect to Autolog to find my SP points. Once again back fresh as though I’d never played before in my life. Perfect.

        • Michael Fogg says:

          Dude, can’t you just start a new profile in-game?

          • Riaktion says:

            Not that I’m aware of, it links to your autolog account which is based on your EA account. So that would mean a new Origin account, which…. I’m not fussed about. The firewall block works great. That said, if you have a less ridiculous solution, I’m open to suggestions :)

    • Unsheep says:

      I share your opinion. This is my favourite NFS game as well, it doesn’t try to be as serious or dramatic as the other ones.

      To me the 2012 version of Most Wanted is far better than the original Most Wanted from 2005, which was very restrictive and did not have that much content.

    • draglikepull says:

      Not only is Most Wanted my favourite Need For Speed game, I like it better than Burnout Paradise, too.

  2. Troubletcat says:

    What about the first Most Wanted? The one that wasn’t garbage?

    • anHorse says:

      The game with the worst rubberbanding in existence?
      That one?

    • dungeoncrawl says:

      Mine too. NFS Most Wanted – Black. One of my disks is scratched and I can’t get it to load anymore. I’ve waited and waited for them to put this up for $5 (or ANY amount) and it’s never there. I just need Disk 1!!!! My all-time fav racing game. The music was perfect (I was introduced to Disturbed in this game) and the interstate racing was just smooooth.

  3. FreeTom says:

    Something about Alice’s reportage makes me expect the (you’re fired – Ed.) from the games mags of my youth.

    Good to see another decent game in ‘On The House’, the last couple haven’t really interested me.

    Oh, mustn’t forget: blah Origin blah evil blah.

  4. Unsheep says:

    I like arcade racers as much as I do hardcore sims, and if you like open-world racing this is definitely worth playing. I bought this game at launch and have never regretted it, even talking about it makes me want to play it again. The openness and sense of speed and action was great in this game. Its the kind of thing you play for casual fun, so grab some beer and get silly.

  5. Fnord73 says:

    Damn, I had almost forgotten I had an EA account. Sweet :-)

  6. MadMinstrel says:

    Pff. They’re just giving it out so they can sell some of the inane DLC for this game.

    • Llewyn says:


    • Riaktion says:

      So we are firmly looking a gift horse in the mouth then? Understood.

      • Hobbes says:

        This gift horse is closer to a trojan horse, be a bit careful. It turns out that the free game is actually only a chunk of the “complete” game, if you want the rest, be prepared to pony up £30 or so for the DLC that finishes off the remaining areas and cars to collect.

        • Riaktion says:

          Well for me I fell like this is merely a perception of DLC. For me the base game with no DLC *is* the complete game and the rest are merely extras should you want more of the game, they were released after the base game and are what they are.. extra, not required. At least in my mind.

          If however these DLC added some game mechanic to which was vital or objectively made the game better…. like I dunno, say if drifting wasn’t a thing in the game then a DLC added it for all cars… then that would be annoying (looking at you “revert” DLC for Tony Hawks HD), however extra cars and events? That is more good stuff for those that want it, not critical content that changes or impacts the quality of the game without it.

          To shake your fist at a AAA game (at the time) being given away for free… and it is the *full* game in my opinion, and then bemoan that the DLC extras aren’t included seems like you’ve missed the point to me, but as I say it is a perception thing and if for you not having all the DLC somehow diminishes the “on the house” offer, then fair enough… but I don’t agree with you.

          • welverin says:


            Oh,wait, I actually agree with you and not the whiners.

            Never mind.

    • bit.bat says:

      Yeah, they do not even have the decency of deterring us from having this game by putting a price on it! Who do they think they are?!

      • Fnord73 says:

        Nah, the DLC seems to be included? On the other hand, its not close to Burnout.

        • Fnord73 says:

          No, you are right, just found my first car that demanded I pay 20 quid for a random DLC. Fuck tham.

        • Riaktion says:

          Hmmm well I’ve played it a bit today and it doesn’t seem to be, it is just the base game as far as I can tell, still plenty of content though.

  7. Jokerme says:

    I don’t know what’s the deal with Burnout Paradise. It is one of the most boring racing games I’ve ever played, but everyone seems to be in love with it. I like arcade racing too, but that game just feels like an empty sandbox full of paper cars with no personality.

    Most Wanted compared to that is a masterpiece.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      I never really played it as a “racing” game. It was a “jump over things and crash” game. :P

    • dungeoncrawl says:

      Agreed. BOP was just boring to me as well. But I seem to be in the minority. NFS Most Wanted Black baby!

    • roothorick says:

      Paradise is firmly in “Seinfeld is unfunny” territory now, so your response is pretty reasonable. (It feels weird for such a seemingly new game to be eclipsed by later games that refined its bold ideas, but I digress.)

      One, it was groundbreaking at the time for being the first sandbox game focused entirely on racing and driving in general. Exploring and collecting at faux-street-racing speeds was an entirely original thing at the time. Where the cities of 3D generation Grand Theft Auto were designed in places to slow you down, Paradise City was specifically designed around letting you leave the throttle wide open no matter where you go, if you’re good enough.

      Two, the bulk of the fun came from the online activities, which look banal at first glance, but the chaos of eight people crowding into one space trying to accomplish the same thing is a blast. The multiplayer version of Marked Man is great too — being the hunter, chasing down your target across the city and bickering with other hunters in a language that involves vehicles meeting their untimely demise on a concrete barrier is every ounce as entertaining as it sounds. Overall, the game is at its strongest, by far, in multiplayer. The problem, of course, is that almost nobody plays it anymore, leaving you with the grindy and lackluster singleplayer campaign.

      • Jokerme says:

        Fair enough. This actually explains it.

        But Seinfeld is funny as hell dammit.

  8. gpown says:

    Actually tempted to try it. Mostly because I sort of enjoyed driving in Rivals but the cash-in system made me shout at a single-player game for the first time since Football Manager.

  9. Blackcompany says:

    Sigh. Another open world racing game with little to no racing wheel support.

    Still, could be fun I guess. And free.

  10. Octane says:

    Out of curiosity, is the “Ian Arts” bit a Richard Herring reference?

    • DelrueOfDetroit says:

      It is so the comments don’t devolve into a string of “EA is the worst” posts. (see: the recent EA conference post)

      • Octane says:

        Yeah, I got that. I was merely asking about the use of “Ian Arts” as a name. The Ian X thing is something that occasionally comes up in Herring’s podcasts, like Ian Tunes who runs Itunes etc. So I was wondering if pretending that EA is run by Ian Arts was a reference to that, not about the purpose of the quote itself.

  11. Phantasma says:

    Well my last game in the series was…. Need for Speed 2. Not kidding.

    Soooo… what has changed :-D?

    • fabronaut says:

      same for me. I had that glorious “Special Edition!” box with the red whatever on the front.

      so much fun playing that with a childhood friend in split screen.

      it’s peculiar, looking back. nowadays, if you asked me to play splitscreen on anything smaller than a 60″ HDTV, it ends up being a pain unless you’re sitting rather close and squinting. (although I suppose at least some of this has to do with 16:9 ratio being the most widely available format for screens)

  12. Teth says:

    Most importantly did they ever fix the multiplayer?
    On release we tried for weeks to play through a whole race series without people who all stayed connected to Teamspeak throughout disconnecting from the game. We weren’t alone with huge threads on their forums. This could be a good revisit if it now works.

  13. heretic says:

    I haven’t played any since Carbon which I enjoyed quite a bit – I did like the story :) Never played burnout.

  14. seroto9 says:

    I must say I’ve really been enjoying being spoilt by more of Alice’s writing lately – much appreciated.

    • heretic says:

      Agreed! I find myself clicking on links to games I have no interest in just because Alice has very catchy opening lines and usually hilarious articles :D

  15. Michael Fogg says:

    Played this on 360, I won’t say no to a free copy, but I didn’t much like the grimy, perpetually rain-soaked city, with the eternally glistening tarmac. Much preffered the sun-kissed landscapes of Paradise.

  16. Hawkseraph says:

    Jesus Christ, if it wasn’t for those goddamned crash animations, this would actually be a good game. EA, you love your DLCs so much, sell me one that lets me disable this crud, please.