John Riccitiello has unveiled the next Need for Speed game and confessed to "torturing" developers working on previous instalments in the series.

Need for Speed Undercover, as the game is titled, will have been in development for considerably longer than its predecessors by the time it's released later this year.

Speaking in an investors meeting, Riccitiello confirmed that the NFS team worked on 12-month development cycles for eight years in a row before bosses took pity on them.

"Last summer we added head count and split the team in two, so now there are two teams on a 24 month cycle," Riccitiello stated.

"We were torturing a very talented group of people up in Vancouver, which makes it harder to be as innovative every year. So, I think we are going to get better from here."

Riccitiello is confident Need for Speed Undercover will "a much better game" than the previous instalment in the series, thanks in part to a richer storyline. Doesn't sound like he was too impressed with Need for Speed Pro Street, which came out last November.

"I thought it was an okay game, in terms of gameplay. It's not good," Riccitiello observed. He's not wrong.

"But who wanted Pro Street? It was a sort of made up, put numbers on the side of your car and pretend to drive your Ferrari where? Or your Porsche where?"

Undercover, according to Riccitiello, is instead taking cues from action films. "For those of you who ever saw movies like The Transporter - it's sort of a cult classic among people with a B-movie mentality, which fits me perfectly," he said.

"I liked it. I apologise. For those of you with no taste, and you liked it too, we can go have a Schlitz after this." Love to.

There's no word on which platforms Need for Speed Undercover is in development for, but chances are it's more than one. Or eight.

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Ellie Gibson

Ellie Gibson


Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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