Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2

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For the prequel, see Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit. For the 2010 game, see Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit.

Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 cover
EA Seattle
Electronic Arts
Release dates
Windows October 21, 2002
Metacritic 73
Genres Racing
Vehicles Street racing
Series Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on HowLongToBeat
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on IGDB
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 guide on StrategyWiki
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on MobyGames
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 on Wikipedia
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit
Subseries of Need for Speed
Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit 1998
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 2002
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2010
Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit Remastered 2020


SafeDisc retail DRM no longer functions properly on Windows Vista and later (see Availability for affected versions).
GameSpy online services have been shut down (see Network for solutions).

Key points

Based on the GameCube/Xbox version of the game rather than the Black Box PlayStation 2 version.[1]


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
CD key
SafeDisc v2 DRM[Note 1]
SafeDisc retail DRM no longer functions properly on Windows Vista and later (see above for affected versions).

Essential improvements[edit]


Patch 242 is the final patch for the game. Adds multiplayer encryption and improves Force Feedback behavior and compatibility.

Skip intro videos[edit]

  1. Go to <path-to-game>\movies\
  2. Delete or rename hp2E.mad, logoE.mad, and logoS.mad to anything else.
  3. Create three empty files with the above filenames in the folder.


This tweak will only work if you are using the No-CD patch, as otherwise the game will simply load the movies directly from the game CD.
Alternatively, you can start the game with the "-nofrustration" argument which will skip the title screen and intro videos.

Increase distance in which particles fade out[edit]

Increases the distance in which particles are rendered. It will be most noticeable in the water effect not fading from waterfalls as their distance increases.
  1. Go to the "EAGL" folder in the game directory.
  2. Open the "LOD" file with notepad.
  3. In the "[max]" section, increase the values for "worldParticle.farFadeIn" and "worldParticle.farFadeOut". It can go to values as high as 999, but keep "worldParticle.farFadeIn" slightly lower than "worldParticle.farFadeOut".

Crash/lock-up on launch or Low/Choppy frame-rate[edit]

Game may crash immediately after entering full-screen/after it creates its application window, or frame-rate may be around 20-30 FPS and lack V-sync
Use DirectInput low frame rate fix[5]

Use the DirectInput FPS Fix.

(Alternative) Unplug or disable incompatible HID devices[6]

If the above doesn't work (it didn't on my Windows 8.1 x64):

  1. Unplug any USB HID devices that you don't need to play the game (Xbox controllers, media remotes, desktop case fan speed controllers etc). For laptops unplug all external USB HID devices such as external mice and keyboards.
  2. Go to Device Manager and, under the "Human Interface Devices" section, disable any remaining "HID-compliant vendor-defined device" and "HID-compliant consumer control devices" (you can re-enable them later)
  3. Game should now launch and work properly. You can start re-enabling and re-plugging devices by testing the game after each change until you find the cuplrit HID device. Mine was the Alienware AlienFX controller.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\EA Games\Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2\

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\EA Games\Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2\

Video settings[edit]

Video settings.
Video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Use HP2WSFix.[7][8]
Use HP2WSFix.[7][8]
4K Ultra HD
Use HP2WSFix.[7][8]
Field of view (FOV)
See Windowed.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
Uncapped.physics and animations capped 60fps.
High dynamic range display (HDR)


Enable windowed[9]
  1. Go to the configuration file(s) location.
  2. Edit rendercaps.ini.
  3. Change Fullscreen=1 to Fullscreen=0.

Input settings[edit]

Input settings
Input settings

To enable Force Feedback on XInput controller, see Force feedback driver.

Audio settings[edit]

Audio settings
Audio settings

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Menu Music, Race Music, Player Engine, Sound Effects, Voice
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Fan translation, download.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
LAN play
Online play
8 GameSpy services have been shut down;[10] see GameSpy for workarounds.
Asynchronous multiplayer

Connection types

Issues fixed[edit]

Add high resolutions to options menu[edit]

By default, the resolution options are limited to WWWW x HHHH and under. Any resolution supported by your graphics driver can be added by making the following change to rendercaps.ini.
  1. Go to C:\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\My files\EA Games\Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2\rendercaps.ini
  2. Set LimitResolution=1 to LimitResolution=0

Game not rendering fog on modern systems[edit]

Note: If you install HP2WSFix, this step is not necessary as d3d8to9 is integrated with it.[11]

Even after setting "World Detail" at maximum, the game won't render fog on modern systems.

Go here and download the d3d8.dll and place it in Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 folder and the d3d8.dll will load d3d8to9 and convert DX8 API calls to Direct3D 9 ones.

Need For Speed Hot Pursuit 2 (exception error)[edit]

Error is "The thread attempted to read from or write to a virtual address for which it does not have the appropriate access."
Copy the following directories from the CD to <path-to-game>\[citation needed]
  1. actors
  2. AI
  3. Audio
  4. Cars
  5. Movies
  6. Particle
  7. Tracks

Game crashing with more than 1 hi-poly car[edit]

This issue can be fixed by installing HP2WSFix as the fix is integrated along with the widescreen fix.[11]

White screen after installed HP2WSFix[edit]

In some PCs, after installed the Widescreen Fix, when the game is launched it freezes on a white screen. To fix this, just remove the global.ini file from the main game directory.

DualShock 4 support[edit]

To use a DualShock 4 with the gas and brake axis, the .ini needs to be tweaked.
Replace definitions.ini and defaults.ini with the ones from here.

Poor performance on high resolutions[edit]

May be fixed copying the game directory outside "Program Files" folder, so it can be run without administrator rights.

Settings not saved on exit[edit]

Profile must be saved manually from the Options menu after configuring settings, won't be saved on game exit.

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 8.1
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Multiplayer GameSpy


System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 98, ME, 2000, XP
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium III 450 MHz
AMD Athlon 500 MHz
System memory (RAM) 128 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 1.2 GB
Video card (GPU) Direct3D compatible
16 MB of VRAM


  1. SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows 10[2] and is disabled by default on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 when the KB3086255 update is installed.[3]