EA has announced that it will be sunsetting several older Need for Speed titles, removing them from digital store fronts and retiring the online services for each of the games.
As per a post on the offiical Need for Speed Reddit, the games in question are Need for Speed Carbon, Need for Speed Undercover, Need for Speed Shift, Need for Speed Shift 2: Unleashed and Need for Speed The Run. All of these are now no longer available on digital storefronts for the consoles they were available for, although you should still be able to download and play the games if you already own them. Then, online services for these five games will be retired on August 31 2021, meaning you’ll be unable to use these racing games’ multiplayer features including leaderboard times, though you’ll still be able to play the games offline.
The series’ Community Manager gave the reason behind the retirement of these older titles, saying: “Decisions to retire games are never made easy, but we are now shifting gears to focus on the future of Need for Speed. The development teams and operational staff have put a lot of time and passion into the development, creation, release and upkeep of the game over the years, and we love to see you play. But the number of players has come to a point where it’s no longer feasible to continue the work behind the scenes required to keep Need for Speed Carbon, Need for Speed Undercover, Need for Speed Shift, Need for Speed Shift 2: Unleashed and Need for Speed The Run up and running.”
It’s not too hard to understand EA’s position even if it is a shame from a games preservation standpoint, as even the most recent of these games—Need for Speed The Run—was released all the way back in 2011 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC. The next Need for Speed was originally going to be revealed this year, but was held back so series developer Criterion can help out on Battlefield 6.