EA Access on Xbox One continues to more than pay for itself with a growing library of free games available in the Vault. Need for Speed Rivals joins Battlefield 4, Madden 25, FIFA 14 and Peggle 2 as the games you’ll get for free with your $5 a month subscription.
I haven’t played a Need for Speed game in ages, and I didn’t expect to have much fun with Rivals, but it’s not too bad of an experience. I tend to prefer simulation racers (Forza) and have never enjoyed arcadey racers like Burnout, but Rivals isn’t too bad. Sure the “story” is laughable and should be skipped outright, but the gameplay is enjoyable. It reminds me a lot of Forza Horizon in that you’re put into a world with other racers and basically mark various events and races on your map and drive to them to start them. You’ll be able to engage in head to head races on the way if you choose and may also get pursued by the police. Any money you earn during your session needs to be banked by heading into a safe house, otherwise if you get busted you’ll lose everything you earned (however, mission progress is not reset).
The only thing I can say I dislike about the game is the load times. Stopping by a safe house to bank earnings is a time consuming process and the load screens involved have kept me from playing more of Rivals. I definitely recommend picking up EA Access and giving Need for Speed Rivals a shot though. You’ll definitely get $5 worth of fun out of it.