Need for Speed: Carbon

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Need for Speed: Carbon
Need for Speed: Carbon cover
Developers
EA Black Box
macOS (OS X) TransGaming Inc.
Publishers
Electronic Arts
Engines
EAGL 3
Release dates
Windows October 31, 2006
macOS (OS X) (Cider) August 17, 2007
Reception
Metacritic 78
Taxonomy
Monetization Sponsored
Microtransactions None
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives First-person, Third-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Racing
Vehicles Automobile, Street racing
Art styles Realistic
Themes Contemporary
Series Need for Speed
Need for Speed: Carbon on HowLongToBeat
Need for Speed: Carbon on IGDB
Need for Speed: Carbon guide on StrategyWiki
Need for Speed: Carbon on MobyGames
Need for Speed: Carbon on Wikipedia
The Need for Speed 1994
Need for Speed II 1997
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (series)
Need for Speed: High Stakes 1999
Need for Speed: Porsche Unleashed 2000
Need for Speed: Underground (series)
Need for Speed: Most Wanted (series)
Need for Speed: Carbon 2006
Need for Speed: ProStreet 2007
Need for Speed: Undercover 2008
Need for Speed: Shift (series)
Need for Speed: World 2010
Need for Speed: The Run 2011
Need for Speed Rivals 2013
Need for Speed (2016) 2016
Need for Speed Payback 2017
Need for Speed: Edge 2017
Need for Speed Heat 2019

Warnings

The macOS (OS X) version of this game does not work on macOS Catalina (version 10.15) or later due to the removal of support for 32-bit-only apps.

Need for Speed: Carbon is a singleplayer and multiplayer first-person and third-person racing game in the Need for Speed series.

It was released in North America and Taiwan on October 31, 2006, in Europe on November 3, 2006, in Australia on November 16, 2006 and in Japan on December 21, 2006.

The PC port of this game is based on the Xbox 360 version, in which some post-processing effects such as the blur effect applied on the street lights as seen on the PS3 version is missing. The motion blur effect also resembles the Xbox 360 version, rather than the more subtle rendition seen on PS3. The quality of the live action/pre-rendered cutscenes are also worse than the 7th-gen console release counterparts.[citation needed].

Physical Collectors copies were used to activate on Origin, but now they no longer do.[1]

There is a DLC that was only released for the Xbox 360 can be accessed in the PC version by using save file editing (Virus Vinyl Pack can also be unlocked by Extra Options).[2]

This is the only "Need for Speed" title to be released for MacOS X.

Availability[edit]

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
CD key
SafeDisc v4 DRM[Note 1], Collectors Edition also available
Windows
Retail
DRM details are not known
macOS (OS X)
Origin (unavailable)
Origin
Collectors Edition Only
Windows
SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows Vista and later (see above for affected versions).

Version differences[edit]

Collectors Edition content includes four exclusive vehicles, specially tuned cars, six exclusive races, three exclusive challenges (with three races per Checkpoint, Pursuits, Race Wars) and a bonus DVD.

Demo/free trial[edit]

Playable Demo[edit]

Progress/achievements does not carry over to the main game.

Monetization[edit]

Type Notes
Sponsored Game is sponsored by multiple real life brands

Essential improvements[edit]

Patches[edit]

Patch 1.4 (EU version, Traditional Chinese) fixes Windows Vista compatibility issue.

Skip intro videos[edit]

Delete/rename video files[citation needed]
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\Game\MOVIES\.
  2. Delete or rename attract_english_ntsc.vp6, ea_bumper_english_ntsc.vp6, eahd_bumper_english_ntsc.vp6 and psa_nikki_english_ntsc.vp6.

Notes

If the game is not in English, delete/rename the files corresponding to the language used instead, and in the PAL version, the file names will have PAL instead of NTSC at the end. For Japanese version, psa_yumi_japanese_ntsc.vp6 also need to be deleted or renamed.
Skip intro videos[citation needed]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's fix.
  2. Open NFSCarbon.WidescreenFix.ini.
  3. Change SkipIntro = 0 to SkipIntro = 1.
  4. Change WindowedMode = 0 to WindowedMode = 1.

Utilities[edit]

Remastered UI[edit]

Bumps up quality of the UI and includes 60 fps barrier animations and Need for Speed 2015 styled map (optional), use HUD Resizer for resizing if needed.

HD Reflections[edit]

Scales the resolution of road, vehicle, and rear view mirror reflections.
Fixes misaligned vehicles reflections and other problems.
Controls the amount of blur used for road reflections and increases its resolution.

QHD Video Pack[edit]

Replaces the original SD quality live action/pre-rendered cutscenes with QHD 1440p resolution videos, upscaled from the Xbox 360 version of the game.
Also looks great on FHD 1080p and UHD 4k displays.
Video freezes can occur on modern systems due to the old nature of the game (this is also the case with the original SD quality videos).
Make sure you installed ThirteenAG's Widescreen Fix and set FMVWidescreenMode = 2, otherwise all videos will be vertically stretched.

Controller support improvements (NFS XtendedInput)[edit]

Improves gamepad support by implementing native XInput support into the game.
Reimplements console-like controls with replacing zoom in/out function to its Xbox 360 counterpart and fixing its behaviour in Photo Mode
Xbox and PlayStation prompts are both supported.
Rebinding can be made only through .ini file. It's disabled in game menu, as for now it crashes the game.
Controls are reset to default.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Wow6432Node\Electronic Arts\Need for Speed Carbon\*[Note 2]
macOS (OS X)

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\NFS Carbon\<user-id>\*.*
macOS (OS X)

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
Origin
OneDrive
Requires enabling backup of the Documents folder in OneDrive on all computers.

Video[edit]

Graphics settings.
Graphics settings.
ThirteenAG's fix may require the latest patch. See Patches.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Use ThirteenAG's fix and NFSC HUD Adapter.
Multi-monitor
Use ThirteenAG's fix and NFSC HUD Adapter.
Ultra-widescreen
Use ThirteenAG's fix and NFSC HUD Adapter.
4K Ultra HD
Use ThirteenAG's fix and NFSC HUD Adapter.
Field of view (FOV)
See Field of view (FOV).
Windowed
Use ThirteenAG's fix.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Use ThirteenAG's fix.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Limited to an 'Anisotropic' option.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Up to 4x FSAA.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
No frame rate cap. The facial captured animation seen on in-engine character models are capped at 30 FPS. Some elements are internally rendering at 60 FPS. See Change physics frame rate.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.
Ray tracing

Field of view (FOV)[edit]

Set custom FOV[citation needed]
  1. Download NFS-VltEd.
  2. Extract the contents and open the application.
  3. Click on File → Open and select the installation folder.
  4. On the left side, expand camerainfo and default.
  5. Select the camera to modify (bumper, close, etc.)
  6. On the right side, expand FOV and change the value beside [0] to the desired FOV.
    • For the hood camera, the value might have to be changed for each car individually.
  7. Click on File → Save to apply the changes.

Input[edit]

Keyboard rebinding.
Keyboard rebinding.
Controller rebinding.
Controller rebinding.

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Remapping
Menu buttons and look back (when racing, always L) cannot be rebound.
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller
Controller support
Use ThirteenAG's fix to adjust deadzone.
Full controller support
Use NFS XtendedInput.
Controller remapping
Use ThirteenAG's fix for proper menu navigation.
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Controller types
XInput-compatible controllers
Use NFS XtendedInput.
Xbox button prompts
Use NFS XtendedInput.
Set ControllerIconMode = 0 in NFS_XtendedInput.ini
Impulse Trigger vibration
DualShock 4 controllers
Use NFS XtendedInput.
DualShock button prompts
Use NFS XtendedInput.
Set ControllerIconMode = 1 in NFS_XtendedInput.ini
Light bar support
Connection modes unknown
Generic/other controllers
Additional information
Controller hotplugging
Use NFS XtendedInput.
Haptic feedback
DirectInput controllers only. For XInput controllers, see here.
Simultaneous controller+KB/M

Audio[edit]

Audio settings.
Audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Sound Effects, Car, Speech, Menu Music and In-Game Music sliders available.
Surround sound
Limited to a 'Surround' option. Up to 5.1 output.[5]
Subtitles
See Subtitles.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Though the game does not use EAX, Creative Alchemy still can be used to enhance sound quality. It will just emulate DirectSound and 3D positional audio with OpenAL. Difference can be easily noticeable when music is off. For non-Creative cards users see here or use dsoal. Run in Windows XP SP3 compatibility mode to avoid crashing career mode while using Alchemy/DSOAL (alternatively as admin, or use 13AG widescreen which will most likely fix the issue). Sometimes whole career need to be started from the beginning with compatibility mode and Alchemy enabled. The solutions are to avoid disappearing car in career menu and crash after attempt to race. Alternative fix for the issue can be found here. Compatibility mode can cause resetting of the game settings. Please note that attempt of changing details in the game (renderer reset after returning from video settings), and either alt tabbing, have an influence on audio quality, also giving diffreent results depending on g_AudioMode setting to 0, 1 (default) or 2 [6] in registry. Consider also setting 24 or 32 bit 192 kHz in Control Panel>Sound>[Default Device]>Advanced.

Subtitles[edit]

Enable English subtitles[citation needed]
  1. Install NFSC Extra Options.
  2. Open NFSCExtraOptionsSettings.ini.
  3. Change ShowSubs = 0 to ShowSubs = 1.

Localizations

Language UI Audio Sub Notes
English
See Subtitles.
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese
Czech
Danish
Dutch
Finnish
French
German
Hungarian
Italian
Japanese
Korean
Polish
Russian
Official localization by 1C-Softclub is here.
Version with added subtitles is here (requires setting ShowSubs=1 in Extra Options). Also contains faithful to original fonts.
Russian
Fan translation by «ENPY Studio»
Slovak
Fan translation, download.
Spanish
Latin American Spanish
Swedish
Thai

Network[edit]

Online settings.
Online settings.

Multiplayer types

Type Native Notes
Local play
Console versions only.[7]
LAN play
Online play
Online servers were shut down in August 31, 2021.[8]



Issues fixed[edit]

Poor frame rate and crashes[edit]

Install DirectPlay
Windows 8/8.1/10 removes important DirectX components, causing game to run poorly, and possibly lead to multiple crashes. These components can be brought back by installing DirectPlay. More about DirectPlay here.
  1. Go to Control Panel, and select 'Programs'.
  2. Select 'Turn Windows features on and off'
  3. Click on 'Legacy Components' and check the box 'DirectPlay'.
  4. Select OK, once the installation is done, restart the computer.
It is recommended to reinstall the game after installing DirectPlay.
DirectPlay is considered obsolete by Microsoft, and hereafter no longer supported.

Controller deadzone issues[edit]

Fix left stick deadzone[9]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's fix.
  2. Deadzone can be adjusted in NFSCarbon.WidescreenFix.ini.

Unable to load save game[edit]

Fix save game loading crash[citation needed]
  1. Install NFSC Extra Options.
  2. Make sure CrashFix = 1 is set in NFSCExtraOptionsSettings.ini.

Stuttering in Windows 10[edit]

Fix stuttering once every second[citation needed]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's widescreen fix.
  2. Open NFSCarbon.WidescreenFix.ini.
  3. Set WindowedMode = 1 to run the game borderless windowed.
This will also fix 60 FPS cap if encountered.

Crashes in Challenge Series[edit]

Fix crashes during certain races[citation needed]
  1. Open NFSC.exe compatibility settings.
  2. Enable Windows XP (SP3) compatibility mode.

Game does not save the graphics options[edit]

Enable the local settings file[citation needed]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's widescreen fix.
  2. Open NFSCarbon.WidescreenFix.ini.
  3. Set WriteSettingsToFile = 1 to store the game settings in the Settings.ini file.
  4. Check the audio settings afterwards, they can be messed up.

Game can't be uninstalled[edit]

eauninstall.exe error: "The program can't start because EAInstall.dll is missing from your computer. Try reinstalling the program to fix this problem."
Fix uninstall error[10]
  1. Go to the installation folder.
  2. Copy EAInstall.dll to %WINDIR%\.
  3. Uninstall the game normally.

Other information[edit]

API[edit]

Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Windows
macOS (OS X)
This 32-bit-only macOS game does not work on macOS Catalina (10.15) or later.

Middleware[edit]

No middleware information; you can edit this page to add it.

Miscellaneous[edit]

Change physics frame rate[edit]

This makes everything in the game smoother, such as the drift force being applied much smoother to the car.
Custom physics hertz[11]
  1. Download Ultimate ASI Loader.
  2. Extract dinput8.dll to the installation folder.
  3. Download NFSC Physics Framerate Changer.
  4. Extract the contents to <path-to-game>\scripts\ (create if necessary).
  5. Open SpeedCarbonPhys.ini and change PhysicsHZ = 120 to the desired value.

Rainy weather modifications[edit]

Force rainy weather[citation needed]
  1. Install NFSC Extra Options.
  2. Open NFSCExtraOptionsSettings.ini.
  3. Change AlwaysRain = 0 to AlwaysRain = 1.
Change size of rain drops[12]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's fix.
  2. Open NFSCarbon.WidescreenFix.ini.
  3. Add RainDropletsScale = 0.5 and change the value if needed.
Xbox Rain Droplets[citation needed]
  1. Install ThirteenAG's fix.
  2. Download Xbox Rain Droplets and put the asi file in scripts folder.

Extra Options[edit]

Adds various new settings and fixes vanilla game bugs.

Unlimiter[edit]

Script mod which fixes some issues and makes some improvements for add-on cars.

Enhanced Visual Treatment[edit]

Enables an unused graphics option and other tweaks.[13]

HD Vinyls[edit]

High quality Vinyls.

World Filters & Sky for Carbon[edit]

This mod ports Visual Treatment filters and Sky Shaders from World to Carbon.

Apex Graphics[edit]

Graphics mod with rain puddles.

More EA TRAX in Races[edit]

This mod makes the game play licensed tracks instead of crew OST during races.

Fog Options[edit]

This mod gives you full control over the CG fog settings.

Wingman[edit]

This mod brings you some new crew stuff.

System requirements[edit]

Windows
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 2000 SP4, XP SP2
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 4 1.7 GHz
System memory (RAM) 512 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 4.7 GB (Retail)
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce3 Series/4 Ti Series
ATI Radeon 8500
64 MB of VRAM
DirectX 9.0 compatible
macOS (OS X)
Minimum[14]
Operating system (OS) 10.4.9
Processor (CPU) Intel Core Duo 1.83 GHz
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 6 GB
Other 8x DVD-ROM drive
Integrated Intel graphics cards are not supported.

Notes

  1. SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows 10[3] or Windows 11 and is disabled by default on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 when the KB3086255 update is installed.[4]
  2. When running this game without Administrator elevation, 32-bit programs writing to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE will be redirected to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\VirtualStore\MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node (more details).

References