Recent rumblings suggest Criterion Games may be developing a reboot of Need for Speed: Underground.
The above logo, sent to us by an anonymous source, was indicated to be part of the title’s box art for the Xbox 360 version of Criterion’s supposed Need for Speed: Underground, corroborating other talk we’ve heard about a Criterion-developed Underground.
According to the source, the title will be set in Bayview?though a rebooted, original Bayview, not Underground 2’s.
While it’s possible that this logo is nothing more than an early mockup?a likely scenario, given the timing, the repeated elements, and the inclusion of real-world landmarks like London’s Big Ben and Rome’s Colosseum?similarities between the source’s report and earlier information received by EGM leads us to believe that the image is most likely linked to a real project currently in development.
The rumor is further supported by the LinkedIn profiles of several Criterion employees, which make mention of an “unannounced racing title” and “unannounced title” of EA’s expected to release sometime this year.
Criterion has previously rebooted two other Need for Speed titles?with 2010’s Hot Pursuit and last year’s Most Wanted?so it would hardly be surprising if the UK-based developer has now turned its attention towards Underground.
When reached for comment, an EA rep informed us that the company does not comment on rumors or speculation.
UPDATE: Criterion creative director Alex Ward has now posted a pair of tweets that seem to deny the studio is currently working on any sequels, reboots, or remakes.
May as well add this. Sequels.Reboots. Remakes. Been there. Done that.
— Alex Ward (@AlexanderJWard) April 12, 2013
That’s a fairly cut and dry denial, but as we’ve still got two separate sources?one trusted, one anonymous?claiming that a new Need for Speed: Underground title is currently in the works, we’re not ready to close the books on this rumor just yet.