Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Need For Speed Unbound Release Date, Trailer, And Gameplay: What We Know So Far

Once the standard for arcade racers everywhere, the "Need for Speed" series has been in a lull for the past several years. After striking pay dirt with acclaimed titles such as the  "Underground" subseries and "Most Wanted" in the 2000s, the franchise failed to recapture the magic with subsequent entries. Even a 2010 reboot of its "Hot Pursuit" game, and another reboot of the lauded "Most Wanted" failed to rejuvenate the series. At this moment in time, many fans of the series don't seem to expect much. However, after a three-year hiatus following 2019's open world "Need for Speed Heat," the series gets another chance to regain its hold on the arcade racing genre with "Need for Speed: Unbound."


After a long period of radio silence from the publisher about the future of the "Need for Speed" series, Electronic Arts recently confirmed that a new entry was in development and not far from release. Early rumors about the game had longtime fans divided on the purported new stylish direction the new "Need for Speed" game would contain. However, now that "Need for Speed: Unbound" has officially been unveiled to the public, does this new direction stand to right the course for the long-running racing series? Here's everything we currently know about "Need for Speed: Unbound."

Does Need for Speed: Unbound have a release date?

On Oct. 6, EA announced that "Need for Speed: Unbound" would be released on Dec. 2, 2022 — just in time for the holiday season. In line with other modern AAA titles, Electronic Arts and developer Criterion Games have made the decision to make "Need for Speed: Unbound" a next-gen exclusive, as it will only be releasing on the Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 5, and the PC via the EA app, Origin, Steam and Epic Game Store. In turn, the game will retail for the next-gen standard price of $69.99.


Should players wish to get more content, a special edition of the game is also available. Titled "Need for Speed: Unbound – Palace Edition," this edition of the game is done in collaboration with skateboarding company Palace Skateboards and will release on Nov. 29 — three days before the official launch — and includes exclusive content such as four custom cars, a clothing pack, driving effect, decals, license plate, character pose, and banner artwork. The price for the "Palace Edition" is $79.99. Both versions of the game are discounted for EA Play subscribers. If you wish to give "Need for Speed: Unbound" a try before making your mind up, a 10-hour trial of the game will be available via EA Play beginning on Nov. 29.


Is there a trailer for Need for Speed: Unbound?

The official reveal trailer for "Need for Speed: Unbound" was released on Oct. 6. In it, fans of the series are treated to their first look at the game and its new aesthetic, which contains a combination of hyper-realistic car models and anime characters. To give the game a bit of an edge and mainstream appeal, popular Harlem, NY-based rapper and ASAP Mob member A$AP Rocky is featured prominently both in the trailer as a character in the game. His long-awaited unreleased song "Sh*ttin' Me" is also played in the background.


On Reddit, the first official look at "Need for Speed: Unbound" seems to have made a mostly positive impression. However, some seem divided on the game's use of VFX effects, such as the wings that appear when using nitrous or the chicken scratch scribbles that appear over the rims when cars hit the acceleration. Overall, it's definitely a different kind of presentation when compared to older "Need for Speed" offerings. However, whether that something different will resonate with most players upon release remains to be seen.

What is the gameplay like in Need for Speed: Unbound?

According to the official press release regarding the game, "Need for Speed: Unbound" will include tons of the features that the series' fans have grown accustomed to over its run. This includes illegal street racing, high-speed chases with police, and a story mode to go with it. The game takes place in the fictional Lakeshore City and follows the story of two friends whose relationship becomes strained after a car robbery. From there, the player will have to rise through the ranks of Lakeshore's street racing scene and reclaim the car.


In the trailer, A$AP Rocky's character tells the player, "If you dust me in this, I'll let you have that b****." This led some to suspect that pink slip racing — races where the loser must forfeit their car over to the winner — could also be featured in "Need for Speed: Unbound." Speaking of cars, the game will have plenty of them. In total, over 144 cars will be playable in "Need for Speed: Unbound," ranging from common Volkswagens all the way to expensive Ferraris.