Need for Speed: Rivals announced, PC version will "look easily as good" as next-gen

Another twist in the increasingly soap opera-like will they/won't they story of love and indifference between EA and the PC. Previously on "The Next Gen": FIFA 14 decides we won't get to play with its new Ignite engine , and EA's own CTO says hurtful things about their relationship with a supposedly more powerful squeeze.

But now, speeding across the highway comes Need for Speed: Rivals, the latest in the publisher's never-ending racer series. It's being released for PC, as well as current- and next-gen consoles. More importantly, developer Ghost Games' executive producer Marcus Nilsson has told Joystiq that, "Need for Speed Rivals will look easily as good on PC as next-generation consoles."

Let's just hope that revelation isn't followed up with a potentially troubling caveat... Damn it, that revelation was followed up with a potentially troubling caveat: Nilsson wouldn't confirm whether the PC release's feature list would be based on the current or next-gen version of the game.

But what is Rivals, and how does it differ to the 5,000 other Need for Speed: Subtitle spin-offs? Here's a teaser trailer:

That preview, with it's high-octane cop chase, suggests Rivals is drifting more in the direction of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit than the track-based Need for Speed: Shift. Which is unsurprising, given that Criterion are riding in the passenger seat with an "in association with" credit.

Here are the details:

"As a racer, the goal is to become infamous for taking risks behind the wheel and capturing your most intense escapes on video for the world to see. The more cops players evade, the more Speed Points they collect, enabling them to unlock new cars and items. Keep raising the stakes race after race to become an ever-more valuable target to the cops – but risk losing it all if busted.

"As a cop, players work together as part of a team in pursuit of racers, earning prominence and rising in the ranks of the Police Force with every bust. Achieving higher ranks unlocks new police only cars and more powerful pursuit tech."

Rivals is being built in the Frostbite 3 engine, and features the "AllDrive" system, which, according to EA, lets players "seamlessly transition from playing alone, to playing with friends." Nilsson says that the system will let friends drop in and out on the fly, and shift objectives based on the proximity of other players.

Need for Speed: Rivals is due out on PC on November 19th.

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.