Need for Speed Most Wanted Game Poster Image

Need for Speed Most Wanted



Exciting racer on wrong side of the law, teens up.
Popular with kidsParents recommend

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The game celebrates illegal street racing. Races speed through city streets and over sidewalks. Players are rewarded for running from and smashing through police cars, and demolishing some structures.


Lots of cars crash into buildings and other cars, but very little damage is depicted. Some crashes involve innocent traffic, but the streets are free of pedestrians.


Some car-related sexual innuendo equating cars and women, like "She's mine now and I'm going to ride her like you never could."

Not applicable

The cars in the game are all branded. In-game advertising in the form of billboards and stores dots the landscape. Licensed songs on the soundtrack are announced with a pop-up on-screen display.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this game is about illegal street racing. This installment includes a new major game dynamic: smashing police pursuers and outrunning them. Other new feature: The game now has an online component, which Common Sense Media does not recommend for anyone under 12. In offline gameplay, players will encounter some light sexual innuendo as well as a fair amount of commercialism in the form of real-life cars and in-game ads.

What's it about?

NEED FOR SPEED: MOST WANTED turns freeways and neighborhood streets into racetracks. The single-player game is dominated by a Career Mode, in which players challenge a collection of street racers known as the Blacklist 15. Players must complete a series of driving challenges before they can compete with each member of the Blacklist.

Players roam freely, selecting challenges as they encounter them, and they have the option to simply jump to a challenge from a safe-house garage. The challenges include an impressive variety of races, such as head-to-head contests against other drivers and beat-the-clock timed runs along highways. Tangling with the cops adds "heat" to a player's car, making future chases more difficult but also winning bounty points and improving the player's reputation.

Is it any good?


Need For Speed provides a nice variety of customizable cars that look and sound great. Many have noticeably different driving characteristics. The sense of speed ramps up accordingly, and the controls are generally responsive within the absurd allowances of arcade racing (due to very noticeable "rubber banding," challengers are usually never too far away, no matter how well players drive).

The Career Mode is quite lengthy and should provide at least 15 hours of gameplay. But if players tire of it, they can compete in Challenge Modes (things like creating the costliest damage possible) or take the racing online. Flying through back alleys and across sidewalks produces plenty of vicarious thrills in this excellent arcade racer, but the game does celebrate illegal and dangerous behavior. Parents may want to think carefully before giving this one the green light.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the dangers of street racing and irresponsible driving. When a high speed car crash left a Canadian man dead, a police officer made the game partially to blame. Do you agree? Does playing a game like this make illegal actions seem more attractive in real life? Should game makers stop glamorizing destructive and illegal activities?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PSP, Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox
Available online?Available online
Developer:Electronic Arts
Release date:February 17, 2006
ESRB rating:T

This review of Need for Speed Most Wanted was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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About Our Rating System

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What parents and kids say

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Adult Written bybbl player April 9, 2008
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008

It's rated T??????????

This game is very fun!!! The only problem with this game is you have to do the same stuff over and over again to get more cars. But with the really fun car Chases it almost completly forgives that. I reccomend this to anyone who likes racing Games!!! Oh yeah and I can't believe this game is rated T!!!!!!!!!! It should have been rated E!!!!!!!!!
Teen, 14 years old Written byYashraj October 2, 2010

U guyz have gone mad!

Hey u guys, just think it over. How does sum consumerism affect u? The game is totally mind blowing. About educational value, do u really thing playing a violent game will affect the behavior. I play all the games which have intense violence in them. But instead of getting violent, i have become a little calm. Coz i can take out all my frustation on the game. Sum of u guys must have played burnout. And the game is the best way to refresh urself, even though it involves just taking down cars. I may recommend these game to all the players out there, both Burrnout and Most Wanted. I think so that sum of the parents here are thinking too extreme.


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