Earlier this year publisher EA revealed that the upcoming Need For Speed would require an always-on Internet connection. At the time, not much was known as to why it was required.
At the time, a tweet from the official Need For Speed Twitter account said that “being connected will allow your friends to be part of your narrative experience, something only possible through connected play.” In a recent interview, Need For Speed developer Ghost Games’ executive producer Marcus Nilsson explained some of the reasoning behind the always-online requirement, and suddenly that tweet makes much more sense.
“We’ve been pretty big with Autolog throughout the years and, as we know, it’s a really powerful feature,” Nilsson told OXM (via GamesRadar). “This time around we’re going to give it more of a human voice. It will treat your friend’s play as if it is part of the narrative experience.”
How tightly that will be threaded into Need For Speed‘s narrative still isn’t known, but depending on how it’s done, this could make for higher replayability in the game’s campaign. That said, this isn’t the only reason the game requires a connection.
“We also have a new snapshot system as well,” Nilsson said. These snapshots of in-game action go out to the Need For Speed network “where people can ‘like’ them, and those likes are being pushed back into the game as currency. So you get progression from sharing your photos.”
You read it right: Need For Speed is always online so friends (and strangers) can “like” your photos.
Some games — MMOs, for example — have a built-in explanation as for why they need to be online, but with more games requiring an always-on connection, gamers are questioning why the practice is becoming so common. While working friends into the narrative sounds potentially interesting, this Facebook-style sharing is already seeing some backlash from gamers, especially since it means they can’t play without an Internet connection.
Need For Speed hits store shelves on November 3 and will be available for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.