Need for Speed Payback is the twenty third installment in the popular and long-running Need for Speed racing game series. Following 2015's reboot of the franchise simply entitled Need for Speed, by Ghost Games and EA, Payback attempts to improve upon mechanisms and points already established in previous iterations of the game. Developed once again by Ghost Games (formerly EA Gothenburg), Payback is published by Electronic Arts for PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. Clearly taking inspiration from the Fast and Furious film series, Payback is the result of Need for Speed taking a break from their yearly release schedule in 2016.
You play as Tyler Morgan, a street racer in Fortune Valley going for one last heist. When your crew is busted by the cops and broken apart, you have to take up work for a benefactor known as The Gambler. Only with his help can you bring your friends Mac the Showman and Jesse the Wheelman together again and take on a megacorporation known as The House in racing warfare. The story is simplistic, unlike previous iterations of the franchise which had much more plot-heavy direction. However, unlike 2015's Need for Speed, Payback does include an offline single-player mode, presumably to cater to those fans without strong internet connections.
Payback does feature a loot box system in order to upgrade your vehicle, which is required to really get the most enjoyment out of the game and the best driving experience as the starter cars are not going to feel as smooth or have as many perks as an upgraded one will. While loot boxes can be acquired by replaying in game events repeatedly, it is designed to push you in the direction of spending real world money on them.
Need for Speed Payback was originally announced with a short trailer EA debuted June 2, 2017 at E3.