Need for Speed World

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World cover art

Need For Speed: World, formerly known as Need For Speed: World Online, is the 15th instalment in the long-running Need For Speed series of racing games, co-developed by EA Black Box and EA Singapore, and published by Electronic Arts.

World is a free-to-play MMORG (Massive Multiplayer Online Racing Game), the first MMORG in the Need For Speed series (EA has stated that Motor City Online is not the predecessor of World). The game mixes the cities of Rockport (Need For Speed: Most Wanted) and Palmont (Need For Speed: Carbon) to create a single map where players can race against each other, enter in pursuits against the cops, or simply free roam. The gameplay is also very similar to the one found in Most Wanted and Carbon, including the car's handling. World focuses on street racing, performance and visual tuning, and police chases, while adding classic MMO elements to the mixture such as special abilities called Power-ups (which are listed here), a levelling system (up to level 60), Skill Mods that can be bought and installed in each car, and Achievements. However, unlike Most Wanted and Carbon, World does not have any storyline or characters. The game engine used is the same (EA Graphics Library 3 or EAGL), albeit with many modifications, including new light effects for day-and-night cycle, sharper textures and shadows, more detailed car models, and other improvements. The cities were also changed slightly to match the new graphics, and new roads were created to connect both Rockport and Palmont.

The development of this game started prior to the release of Need For Speed: Carbon (2006). However, intense devotion to finish the product didn't begin until late 2008. The first beta test was held in Taiwan in October 2009, but only for residents of that area. On 5th March 2010 the first American/European closed beta was released for a limited number of players, and there have been five more betas since, with the number of players being increased each time. A stress test was also conducted to test the servers' capability to handle a lot of traffic. The game was finally released worldwide on 27th July 2010 via download. However, those who ordered the World Starter Pack had a head-start one week earlier (on 20th July 2010). The game ultimately received mixed reception, with a MetaCritic average of 62/100, and a GameRankings score of 63.83%. Roughly 2 months after the initial game release, on 9th September 2010, World had reached 1 million registered players, and by December 2011 the number of registered players had reached 10 million. During the second anniversary of the game, in July 2012, it was revealed that the number of registered players had reached 17 million.

Since its release, Need For Speed: World has seen a continuous development, as the developers provide more content to the game usually every 2 weeks, such as new cars, new game modes, new features, and a wide variety of bugs fixes and improvements, as is normal with massive multiplayer online games.

The game offers the ability to start crews, and as such an official World Racing Crew exists. You can apply for it at this topic in the forum.

The map of Need For Speed: World

The official word:

Need for Speed World is the FREE to play online racing game where you decide how to play in a massively multiplayer world. Connect with friends or race against the world as you rise through the rankings. Race the very latest cars or relive classic NFS moments with the ever-expanding car list. Stamp your identity on the cars with an endless combination of paints and liveries.



  • Developer: EA Black Box
  • Publisher: Electronic Arts
  • Release date: 27th July 2010
  • Available on: PC (Microsoft Windows)
  • Game engine: EAGL 3 (modified)
  • Game version: 15.26 (as of 2nd June 2013)
  • Official website:
A Nissan GT-R (R35) in-game

Game info

Minimum system requirements

  • Operative system: Windows XP Service Pack 3
  • Processor: Intel Pentium 4 (Hyper-threading) @2.4 GHz
  • RAM memory: 1.0 GB
  • Video card: NVIDIA GeForce 6800, ATI Radeon X1300, Intel GMA 950
  • Recommended video chipsets: NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT 256MB or greater; ATI Radeon X1800 XT 512MB or greater
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Sound card: DirectX 8.1 compatible
  • Hard drive: 2 GB
  • Network connection: 128 Kbps Cable/DSL connection
  • Online multiplayer: 512 kbps or faster; 2-8 Players
  • Input: Keyboard, Mouse, Supported Game Controllers

Recommended system requirements

  • Operative system: Windows Vista / Windows 7
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @1.8 GHz
  • RAM memory: 2.0 GB
  • Video card: NVIDIA GeForce 7600, ATI Radeon HD 2000 series, Intel GMA 950
  • Recommended video chipsets: NVIDIA GeForce 8600 or better; ATI Radeon HD 2600 or greater
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Sound card: DirectX 8.1 compatible
  • Hard drive: 2 GB
  • Network Connection: 128 kbps Cable/DSL connection
  • Online Multiplayer: 512 kbps or faster; 2-8 Players
  • Input: Keyboard, Mouse, Supported Game Controllers

Laptop versions of these chipsets may work but are not supported. Updates to your video and sound card drivers may be required.

World Starter Pack

Before 8th September 2010, after reaching level 10 and having 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 experience points or cash (but the player would still be able to play for an unlimited time). To continue levelling up and unlocking new cars and parts, the player had to purchase the Need For Speed: World Starter Pack. This initially disappointed many fans, so the game was made free-to-play and the level cap was removed on 8th September 2010, after World had reached 1 million registrations. To compensate those players who bought the Starter Pack before the level cap was removed, EA offered a 7-day car rental code for the Audi R8 4.2 FSI quattro, the BMW M3 (E46) GTR, and the Lamborghini Gallardo LP 560-4.

Currently any player can reach the maximum level (60) without paying anything. However, most cars and performance/visual parts are only available with SpeedBoost, a currency in World that can only be bought with real world money. Because of the recurrent use of SpeedBoost to buy many of the cars and parts in the game, World has been called a freemium MMORG (freemium is a business model that works by offering a game free of charge while charging a premium for advanced features). The World Starter Pack had a price tag of 19.99€ / $19.99 USD / 14.99 GBP, and it contained:

  • 8000 Speedboost
  • 1-week head-start and increased XP rewards during that first week
  • An exclusive Mazda Mazdaspeed 3
  • Bundle of power-ups

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