WMG / Need for Speed

The Protagonist is the same in Underground through Undercover.
It's RYAN COOPER everybody! Check it, he starts in Olympic City a total unknown but good enough that he swiftly beats Eddie, a top racer. Eddie calls a hitman to kill him and fails. He goes to Bayview to raise the stakes, taking out the man who tried to kill him. Next he goes to Rockport to blow off steam, and gets the attention of the Blacklist 15, and Cross. Kicking their asses and pissing off Cross, he flees to Palmont with Cross on his tail. Cue the story of the original noobish Ryan Cooper losing a crapton of money and returning to people hating him. After clearing his name he retires temporarily to Street Legal, going on a World Tour. After winning he yearns for the old life and becomes a wheelman in Undercover.

Alternately, the entire series from Underground to Undercover isn't in order.
Look at the geographies. All are by the coast of what can be considered California and Oregon.
  • Tri City Bay could be from San Francisco, as it is the largest, with many bays and bridges, huge toll freeways, and vast hills to the North. Bayview would be LA, since I7 is very similar to I5, and goes through the heart of the city (as seen in a drag race in-game). There is also an easter egg if you go into Jackson Heights, on one or two cliffs you may notice a shimmering gold (streetlamps) freeway leading North from the city. I7 could just as easily go South to San Diego. Olympic City would technically be San Diego. It's the only other major seaside city along US 101/I5, and is smaller than LA (smaller than Bayview). Rockport is Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA. Since it has water to the east and is the only city large enough after discounting all other Seaside Cities near to the other ones, it makes some sense. Palmont is Redding, CA. It is the Connector to I5 toward Rockport, and has both the Sacramento River and Shasta Lake, and Mountains to the North.
    • But if you started in Palmont, which would be Redding, why did you go all the way down to San Diego (Olympic City)?
      • The order in ascending cities -> Undeground, Underground 2, Undercover, Carbon, Most Wanted 2005. But remember that Cooper went South from Rockport. So it is Underground, Underground 2, Undercover, Most Wanted 2005, Carbon. The player was working for the PD before turning against them (transition from Undercover to Most Wanted 2005). Most Wanted 2005, then Carbon, then ProStreet (World Traveler).

Alternatively to that, the Protagonist from Underground through Carbon is the same, but the other games are set in the same universe.
Starts off in Olympic City as a nobody, takes down Eddie and becomes the champ, scoring several magazine deals and DVD cover shoots. Caleb dislikes this and takes the protagonist's car out. To clear his head, he moves off to Bayview, gets tons of sponsorship and race wins and beats Caleb. Now this is where it gets weird. The player leaves and goes to Palmont where he meets Darius and Nikki. After making a name for himself, something happens with his ride (totalled/impounded?) and Darius lends him his Supra. This is where the flashback from Carbon starts. The player is set up, and told to leave Palmont with Darius' car. After winning some more races whilst passing through some other cities, he swaps the Supra for the BMW M3 GTR. He then heads to Rockport.

After becoming Street King in ProStreet, Ryan Cooper will start a racing career in Ridge State.
Because we NEED to see a Lamborghini take on the Soldat Crinale. Among other cars.

The Protagonist in Prostreet is the same person as the player character in Shift.
After defeating Ryo Watanabe in Prostreet, Ryan Cooper is now heading to the higher level of sanctioned, official racing leagues. He will never come back to underground street racing scene. 24 Hours of Le Mans or NASCAR anyone? He would be in World Rally Championship too.

Hot Pursuit 2010 is set in France and Germany, and Hollywood Geography has hit hard.
Just the shape of the world map fits so well with Western Europe.
  • But then how do you explain the American flags on the flagposts in the SCPD lodges and the US flags on some of the cop cars?
  • Also the cops speak English

The SCPD (Hot Pursuit) has been chasing racers probably since the '80s or maybe even before
The Lamborghini Countach police car and the 1982 Porsche 911 Turbo have police livery and emergency lights similar to those found in real life police cars from the '80s. If the SCPD has been chasing racers before, perhaps as early as the '60s, they most likely used the Lamborghini Miura

Seacrest County in Hot Pursuit 2010 is corrupt.
The county spends enough money to use highly exotic cars as speed enforcement vehicles, but limits the number of times you can call in support from other units. It's like they're trying to make it a challenge, like they know it's a game...

At some point in the past the street racers took over the Seacrest County government and raised taxes to buy all of these fancy cars for the police just so that the racers would have better competition to race against. That's also why you can play both sides, it's all part of the game.

When you're playing as a cop, racing up behind civilian vehicles that won't pull off to the side of the road despite you having your flashing lights on? That's the native population of Seacrest County doing what they can to oppose the street racing regime ruling over them.

  • And freedrive (as racer) would be telling the police to back off so you can practice your driving. Also explains why you wouldn't get chased after passing a police station in a race, duel, time trial or preview (as well as freedrive).

And, to piggyback off the previous theory, Rivals takes place in the future of Hot Pursuit 2010, where Reality Ensues.
Perhaps Seacrest's Racers went careening off the slippery slope, or perhaps the SCPD was taken over by competent officers (such as the VRT), but something happened between Hot Pursuit 2010 and Rivals that sparked a bitter rivalry between Cops and Racers. Following the quelling of Seacrest's illegal exotic scene, resentment towards the police inspired pockets of amateur Racers to condense against various neighboring jurisdictions; one of them being the RCPD.

In the beginning, Racers wanted to emulate the myths they'd heard of Seacrest County. They envisioned open roads with no traffic, and to borrow the title of an early event, "Unlimited Driving Pleasure". Yet that era had just passed, and RCPD was swift to react: Granted funding from the state, domestic muscles and foreign exotics were shipped in by the dozen to give Cops a fighting chance against the Racers. As well, seasoned veterans were requested from departments that had dealt with street racing in the past, hence explaining the various types of license plates affixed to RCPD's top officers.

For every move made by the police, the Racers pushed harder. Eventually, the group's priorities shifted from liberation to just defiance and survival. And just as the war had claimed its first casualty, social media and news networks had finally cast the public eye upon the chaos raging in the streets.

This of course led to the federal examination of the department midway through the Cop campaign. As heard in a Racer cinematic however, all members are cleared of excessive force accusations, allowing the player (F-8) to take down Zephyr. And yet, the story doesn't quite end there. Having realized his true calling, F-8 will return as the nucleus of a Racer revolution should there ever be a "Rivals 2".

All of the police forces around the globe in Nitro are corrupt.
They can be bribed, either into going easier on you(r car) or beating up your opponent's car instead of yours.

The makers of Hot Pursuit 2010 are against high-speed chases by the police.
The civilian vehicles don't get out of the way for the police because they were programmed not to. Thus, the game teaches players that civilians often get hurt in high-speed chases, causing them to be more likely to oppose them in real life.
  • Some civilian cars do move to the side during police chases, meaning that it is not really that they cannot, but rather they cannot move away fast enough. Either that or they are moving away very slowly.

Need for Speed: The Run will be a sequel to Portal 2.
Just watch this trailer and look who's driving at 0:31.

The #1 Blacklist racer before Razor was...
  • JV. Ronnie and Bull are implied to have risen through the ranks of the Blacklist alongside Razor. All three of them defeated the former #1 Blacklist Racer, which demoted him to #4.
  • Earl. The most difficult Blacklist racer in the game used to be #1, but Razor's rise completely upended the Blacklist. After a series of crushing defeats from Razor and his cronies, Earl was swiftly losing money, parts, and cars as fellow Blacklist veterans JV and Webster surpassed him. Then up-and-comer Ming overtook him along with Kaze and Jewels. Left only with a Lancer that, performance-wise, is a shadow of his former car, Earl sees a chance to make a comeback by beating a certain racer moving up the Blacklist...

Hot Pursuit 2010, racers and cops have the ability of nano-manufacturing an infinite amount of cars like in PlanetSide
  • Explains why the racers and cops can drive exceptionally rare cars like the Pagani Zonda Cinque, or the "1 in 50,000,000 chance of owning" Reventon Roadster.
    • Heck, this could apply to the other games, especially with one-off concepts like the Ford GT-90 from II or the Alfa Romeo/Ital Design Schigera from III.

Hot Pursuit takes place in an alternate universe where humanity has evolved thicker skulls in place of larger brains.
  • Which explains why the entire police department revolves around using exotic and expensive cars to stop speeders by ramming them and making them flip over (which would kill a normal driver). The police department just doesn't know any better.

Most Wanted 2012 is actually a virtual reality simulation
Think about it... switching mods almost immediately while on the road is impossible to do in real life. The pre-race cutscenes also show the cars doing practically impossible feats; for example, in Straight To The Point, all the cars are driving above the road, while in Ambush events such as Storehouse Stakeout, a single police car clones itself and turns into a giant rolling wheel pursuing the player character. The Wii U version features the ability to switch between day and night immediately, enabling and disabling traffic and switching between cars on the road (this feature is also available on Multiplayer mode on all versions). None of these are possible to do in real life at all. The various features of the game mentioned are all controlled by the player, while the Ambush event cutscenes were possibly implemented by the game developers in order to mess with the player character's head.

In the cop career in Rivals, you dont actually play as F-8
This may serve as an explanation as to how come the player can continue to play as a cop despite storywise having been fired from the RCPD. You were actually playing as a different officer rising up the ranks alongside F-8 and helping him out chase down Zephyr. This could also explain how the Hennessey Venom GT was the car shown in the final news broadcast as F-8's wrecked cop car despite the Venom being unlocked to the player only after that happens.

Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit originally planned on having the Vector W8 but licensing changed at the last moment.
Take a look at the desktop icon for the game and you'll notice it is a a Vector W8. That has some implications.

The Player Character in Most Wanted 2012 is the police supervisor.
He/She is either corrupt or undercover, busting the city's top 10 street races in the name of the law, or just to get their hands on the racers' exotic cars for cheap. Once they lose the police in a pursuit, they give the cops some time to catch up, and, if they fail, call the chase off. If they're busted, then they can call the whole thing a training exercise or necessary to maintain their cover, and are thus returned to the streets to race some more.

The racers in Hot Pursuit are drug lords who use their drug money to buy their supercars
And they use Seacrest County as their "private" race track (but the cops have other ideas)

Redview (Rivals) and Seacrest (Hot Pursuit 2010) Counties are near each other.
This one doesn't really take a stretch of the imagination to picture. Both counties are extremely large but very under-developed in terms of civilized areas and have lots of open roadways that run through their respective regions. Furthermore they're both Patchwork Maps, with things like deserts, forests, beaches, and mountainous regions that transition very abruptly between each other (only about 10 miles drive between each environment). Thus the only way that you could rationalize the existence of both counties in the same world is to assume that they inhabit the same geographic region (it could also explain why both counties' police departments are so over-equipped).
  • Confirmed somewhat. If you stop by the bridge at the top of the map in Driftwood Heights, the sign says California. Seacrest County is in California as well, evidenced by the lighthouse on Mission Beach. It looks just like the Point Arena Light in Mendocino County.

F-8 and Zephyr from Rivals are actually battling respectively for YHVH and Lucifer from Shin Megami Tensei.
Come think about it. F-8 is a cop obsessed with taking down the street racing scene in Redview, and is a firm Knight Templar, believing that only pure order can make everyone happy, says that everyone else who doesn't believe in the same ideologies as him is an Ungrateful Bastard, and that law is automatically good, while chaos is automatically evil. F-8's codename, while technically being spelled as "Fate", can also spell out "Faith", the same thing that YHVH desperately craves in SMT. Zephyr, instead, is a chaotic street racer who thinks that strict order only brings undisclosed unrest, while a world of pure chaos is something that people actually want. Plus, Zephyr sounds a bit like Lucifer's name itself.

A future Need for Speed title will be set in Hawaii. Aloha, Hawaii!.
Hawaii is an American state popular as a tourist attraction, and there are some street racing scenes around since racetracks were gone. A Wide Open Sandbox racing game would cover the entire state of four islands.
  • Pretty much like Test Drive Unlimited but with more emphasis on car customization.

Travis is the protagonist of the Underground/Most Wanted series.
Continuing off the idea that the Protagonist from Underground is also the same person the player takes the role of in Most Wanted and Carbon, after taking down a criminal racing syndicate, jumping off a bridge to escape from an entire police force, and taking over an entire city, he decided that two totaled and/or stolen cars is more than enough, and that the small town of Ventura Bay was a nice place to hang up the first person camera, since while he could still involve himself in the racing scene by doing the same thing Samantha, Rachel, Mia, and Neville did for him, and maybe pissing off the cops every once in a while for old times' sake, he wouldn't have to worry about getting involved with any other corrupt syndicates or Cowboy Cops trying to bring him down. Besides, he did say Eddie and him known each other for a while, the BMW M3 GTR had to come from somewhere, and who else would be crazy enough to steal the most famous car made by a known tuner while he's in town? That's a regular weekend, compared to the crap he's been through.

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