I've played NFS: HS (Road Challenge), PU (P 2000), HP 2, MW '05, MW '10 and this - a true NFS fan, that is.
- Physics, realistic loss of traction at high speeds (aye, I've also driven a real car at high speed and lost traction, so I would know).
- Lots of interesting game modes.
- Lots of interesting tracks, specifically I like how this game doesn't do cheap stuff like track mirroring or obnoxious night time ice skating to bump up difficulty. I also like how some tracks have several variants with common bits.
- No catch-up! You actually get what you deserve as far as I can tell. Difficulty is dynamically adjusted in the beginning of each race according to your performance but never mid-race as it used to be.
- Graphics are stunning, camera options are good and make a lot of sense (e.g. two different in-cockpit cams with different settings).
- Background graphics because no flux were given :D
- Lots of settings for the car*
- No DLC ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥, existing cars are all good enough to beat the events, your friends and even clock some serious records.
- Loads of CTDs and sound bugs. For me the source of CTD persists over the CTD, e.g. if I was playing track A with settings XYZ and it crashes, it's gonna crash with track A and XYZ no matter how many times I restart the game. Then again, it fixes itself if I play A with settings XCV or if I play track B.
- ...loooong intro videos, yet to look into disabling them. This would be tolerable if for not so many CTDs.
- General handling settings. I play with KB and like many people have mentioned, there's a lot of input lag. This, however, is not a true con, because you can always disable the "stabilising" setting:
=> Edit DampeningEnabled="1" string to "0" in vehicleset_pc_custom_[controller name here].xml
Also the default settings for tuning are very very loose and unresponsive at times, do not forget to edit.
- While settings are plenty (see pros), the poor default settings force you to make your own. There are a lot of settings there and the explanations for each setting are decent at best - a bit of a learning curve to get them right and you'll need to tap into actual tuning guides for real world cars to get the most out of your ride.
- Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 is a Limited Edition only car by default. There are guides to unlock LE cars and events, though, but it's a bit of a nuisance and you'll need to edit the master .exe to achieve this.
TL;DR: To get everything out of this game lots of fiddling with game files, game settings and car settings is involved. For this reason I'm going to give 9/10. Otherwise a brilliant, brilliant game.