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Hot Pursuit (Game Mode)

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Hot Pursuit is a game mode first seen in Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit, later appearing Need for Speed: High Stakes, Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 and Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010). It is both a single player and multiplayer mode.

Need for Speed III: Hot PursuitEdit

Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit was the first game in the series to feature playable police vehicles (PC release only). Unlike The Need for Speed, cops will use spike strips and roadblocks to stop racers.


Hot Pursuit involves a 1 on 1 battle along a single track. Events can have two, four or eight laps. The event begins with a racer passing a cop vehicle. The police scanner by the player will start blinking rapidly, while approaching to the vehicle. After encounter, a pursuit will be triggered. It is possible for a racer to not be chased by the police throughout the whole race but that will require players to drive fairly slowly.

If a player gets busted, they will receive a warning ticket. The player will be arrested if they exceed the ticket limit.


Cop players always begin behind the racers at the start of a race. The cop has to chase and arrest a racer. Cops can place a spike strip somewhere along the race course whilst pursuing a racer. Police players can also open a large map in order to search for a racer if they have broken visual contact. If a cop manages to arrest a racer then they will spawn at the location of the leading racer.


A player will be rewarded with new cars for each track of the game after completing a Hot Pursuit on that track. A police model of the Lamborghini Diablo SV can be unlocked once the player completes a Hot Pursuit on every race track as a racer. Cops will be rewarded with a El Niño police car.

Need for Speed: High StakesEdit

The PlayStation 1 release of Need for Speed: High Stakes has tougher and more robust AI compared to its PC release. Both releases feature the same gameplay.

Need for Speed: High Stakes features the same gameplay formula seen in the previous title - Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit. Hot Pursuit in Need for Speed: High Stakes has been split into three distinct variations;

  • Classic - Typical Hot Pursuit gameplay seen in the previous installments.
  • Getaway - Players have to lose contact with any police force within a set time.
  • Time Trial - Similar to Classic Mode except players also have to beat a time record.


In Need for Speed: High Stakes the Hot Pursuit game mode sees a duel between two racers whilst being chased by the police. Racers have the same traits seen in Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit.


Cops can use the same tactics seen in older installments. Players no longer have to chase racers by themselves and will be supported by other cops. Its also possible for players to switch their police vehicles with those utilised by the AI. Helicopters are available for police use. The roadblocks in High Stakes now can be equipped with small concrete walls although they cannot be placed by players.

In the PlayStation 1 releases allows cop players to spawn at random places similar to the AI police. The cops have to arrest 10 speeders within the time limit.


Successful racers or cops will be rewarded with bonus police vehicles in the PC release.

PlayStation 1 RewardsEdit

In the PlayStation 1 release of Need for Speed: High Stakes, cop players can obtain special police cars depending on the vehicle they are utilizing. By arresting ten racers, following police cars can be unlocked with these specific vehicles;

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2Edit

The Hot Pursuit Mode (Ultimate Racer Mode in the EA Black Box developed release) no longer sees racers duel as they escape from cops. Up to four players can now be pursued by the police.

Racers seen in You're the Cop Mode(EA Black Box release) or (EA Seattle release) Be The Cop Mode have bars above them showcasing the health of their vehicle. The racer is arrested once their health has been depleted.


Racers in Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 have equal attributes as in Need for Speed: High Stakes and in the original Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit. The overall difficulty has been increased as the cops have more tactics than in older Need for Speed titles. Police vehicles cannot be wrecked, although this is possible in the PlayStation 2 release.


The use of Spike Strips is available in Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2. Cops are also allowed to call for both police vehicle and helicopter reinforcements. The helicopters in Hot Pursuit 2 will drop spike strips and explosive barrels. The PlayStation 2 release helicopters are also equipped with missiles and barrels containing hidden spike strips.

Racers will receive damage and a loss of speed upon contact with helicopter dropped items. These tactics can only be used three times and roadblocks cannot be used by players. Cops will be spawned near the remaining racers after a racer has been arrested. Police backup can be requested, though this feature is absent in the PlayStation 2 release.

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (2010)Edit

Veyron cop2
Hot Pursuits are seen frequently throughout the single player career mode. The player has to bust a number of racers whilst being a cop before the racers reach their finish line. The number of racers depends on the difficulty of the mission, how far the player has progressed through the career, and the class of vehicle they are driving.

As a racer, the player must escape the police in a pursuit whilst attempting to reach the finish line before their rival racers. The player can either rely on speed alone to survive, or can attempt to wreck the pursuing police units for a full bar of Nitrous and a greater chance of survival. If the player wrecks or is busted by the police, the match ends and no additional placement reward is given. The number of police units depends on the difficulty of the mission, how far the player has progressed through the career, and the class of vehicle they are driving.


Multiplayer Hot Pursuit follows the same rules as the single player variant by involves a maximum of eight players with four being on each side of the law. The teams will be picked depending on individual players skill levels by the lobby in order to create a placed set of teams.

The cops must bust all opposing racers before they can reach their finish line. Racers must reach the finish line before being busted by the cops or wrecking their vehicle. Players can earn additional Bounty by being on the winning team, earning the most busts or by finishing in pole position.

Players are given an assortment of Equipment such as spike strips, helicopters, Roadblocks, EMPs, Jammers and Turbos. Each player is given a limited amount but some can be used in conjunction with other players on the same team.


Racers must finish an A-B track without their car being totalled by the police. Hot Pursuits do not take place along any lap based circuit unlike Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit. Racers can also be rammed, damaged and wrecked by other Racer team players. The Police Scanner will only blink, once interceptor units are located.


Cops always start a Hot Pursuit event behind the Racer players. Cops have to arrest any and all racers before they finish the race. Cops can also be rammed, damaged and wrecked by other Cop team players.


Players can earn additional Bounty during a Hot Pursuit by performing stunts such as near misses, wrecking rivals, dodging roadblocks, successfully firing an EMP, using a turbo boost without colliding with anything, discovering new shortcuts and reaching milestones.


  • In the Playstation 2 release of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 players can flatten their tyres by driving on their own spike strips as the police.
  • Ferraris are not playable within this game mode except in Hot Pursuit 2.

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