Parents' Guide to

Need for Speed Unbound

By Paul Semel, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Street-focused racer breaks rules, but idles on innovation.

Need for Speed Unbound cover

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 17+

Family friendly no more

This game has waaayyy too much profanity! Even my wife heard the cussing during some of the songs and dialog, of course you have the option to skip the sound altogether but why does that have to be necessary for a game designed to be played by kids and teens? Huge disappointment after all the great Nfs games I've played before...I had to uninstall and instead I'm playing Forza Horizon 5 now!
age 16+

Too much cussing

This game has so much profanity it is not funny. The music has nonstop profanity as well as the voice speech. It is truly sad that a game intended for kids has so much profanity. I turned it off in the main menu but kids can still toggle the voice and profanity back on.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (3 ):

Though it works well, this open world street racing game is also far from interesting or inventive. Like many of the other games in this long-running series, Need for Speed Unbound has you trying to make a name for yourself in the local illegal street racing scene. Which, in the story mode, not only means engaging in numerous races (including multi-lap events and point-to-point races) and the usual automotive activities (speed traps), but also running away from the cops when they try to arrest you. You can even hit the nitro for some added speed. The kicker being that, if you make it back to a safehouse, it not only causes the police to lose interest in you, but it also banks whatever cash you've earned since your last visit.

But while this has solid controls, twisty courses, and competition that actually gives you a run for your money, it's rather generic. It doesn't add anything major to either the genre or this series, and what it does add is unimpressive. Sure, it swaps the photo-realism of previous games for an animation approach, but these colorful additions are merely cosmetic. Similarly, while the story mode has missions where you have to drive someone without getting arrested, the mini map shows you where the cops are all time, which makes it way easy to avoid them. As for multiplayer, it has you driving around the city, looking for people to race against, which is far more annoying than just giving you a menu where you can pick a race. All of which is why Need for Speed Unbound still scratches the titular itch, but not in a way that's either satisfying or unique.

Game Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate