Take the Need for Speed Most Wanted demo out for a test drive today

Better late than never! Criterion Games and EA are usually pretty good with releasing pre-release demos of their upcoming games, though for whatever reason they missed out on one for Need for Speed: Most Wanted.

So, if you were holding off to try before you buy, today is your lucky day. An Xbox 360 demo is live right now, and the PS3 one should be available a bit later today. Take it out for a spin.

Read on for the announcement and also make sure to check out our review of the game.

Have you been itching to make trouble in the open world, action racing game everyone is talking about? Now you can. Electronic Arts Inc. and Criterion Games today released a single-player demo for Need for Speed Most Wanted, the recently launched and critically acclaimed reimagining of the bestselling title in Need for Speed history. Need for Speed Most Wanted has generated excitement and enthusiasm from players and press around the world. Since launching on October 30, the game has received numerous press accolades including a perfect 5/5 score from UK?s The Guardian, and 9/10 scores from IGN, Game Informer and the UK?s Edge Magazine. The demo, which is available now for free download on PlayStation Network and Xbox Live (LINK), unleashes gamers into the connected, open world of Fairhaven City where they race, chase and explore their way to become Most Wanted amongst their friends.

The Most Wanted demo starts players behind the wheel of one of the game?s most recognizable, rides: the Aston Martin V12 Vantage. Players can also jack into three additional cars placed in different areas of Fairhaven? the Porsche 911 Carrera S, the Audi R8 GT Spyder and the Ford Focus RS500 ? if you can find it, you can drive it. Each vehicle has its own unique races, challenges and mods to unlock. Autolog 2 puts social competition at the heart of the experience by tracking and comparing everything players do against their friends and offering up gameplay recommendations and challenges throughout the open world as a result. If there?s something to do, there?s someone to beat ? from achieving the best time in a race to the fastest speed through a speed camera. Players are constantly blazing a trail of high scores not only in their game, but in their friend?s games as well. How can you tell which friend has the furthest jump through a billboard? Autolog 2 puts their face on it. New Most Wanted players can achieve up to 50,000 Speed Points in the demo ? all of which will carry over into the full game, giving players a flying head start to topping the Most Wanted list.