On November 16th, Burnout Paradise developer Criterion Games will return to the world of fast cars with Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, marking the return of cop cars to the long running racing franchise. A demo has gone up today that offers you the chance to test out both the racing and the chasing. For a limited time, you'll be able to play two different game modes in Hot Pursuit, all while experiencing EA's "revolutionary social network", named Autolog, which you'll have to access in order to play the full demo.
The first playable game mode, entitled Dark Horse, will have players driving a police car patrolling the mountainous coast of Seacrest County. The Autolog system will be tracking your times and statistics, and use them to generate competition for you based on who else is playing. If one of your friends also has the demo, and you add him to your NFS friends list, you'll unlock the second part of the demo, Roadsters Reborn. This mode will have you switching roles to play as a racer, competing for times. Downloading the demo will also give you a leg up once the full game releases, earning you 500 bounty award points for both your cop and racer careers.
Don't get me wrong; I'm going to try this out, but there is something a little odd about only getting full access to a demo if your friends are playing it too. Especially since the press release almost encourages people to pimp the game to their friends, saying "just invite one friend to join". Is it really the job of the individual gamer to push EA's newest racing game on a list of people who may not be interested? Maybe I'm making too much of this, but it just seems like an odd precedent to set for a demo.