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EA, Criterion's Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit Hits 2m Demo Downloads

Electronic Arts and subsidiary studio Criterion said Wednesday that the demo for the upcoming racer Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit has been downloaded 2 million times on consoles in two weeks.
Electronic Arts and subsidiary studio Criterion said Wednesday that the demo for the upcoming racer Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit has been downloaded 2 million times on consoles in its two weeks of availability. It's the highest number of downloads for any title in the long-running Need for Speed franchise, EA said. As of October last year, the franchise had sold over 100 million copies. Other Need for Speed games in this console generation include Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Carbon, Pro Street, Shift and Nitro, as well as this year's online-only Need for Speed World. The interest in Hot Pursuit could bode well for the franchise, which has retreated into the shadows of high-profile racing series like Microsoft's Forza, Sony's Gran Turismo, EA and Criterion's own Burnout and increasingly popular racers from Codemasters like Dirt. Janco Partners analyst Mike Hickey last week said Hot Pursuit -- due to release on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC -- is poised to sell 4.2 million units during the holiday quarter, following its release next week, generating $185 million. Initial reviews for the game are strong, ranging from 80 to 100 on Metacritic. A Wii version of the game is in development by Exient. EA is also readying to release another Need for Speed title in the near future, Need for Speed Shift 2, developed by Slightly Mad Studios in a collaboration with EA Black Box, and due to release by March next year.

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