Progressing through most racing games is pretty straightforward. Players must complete races and either unlock new cars or improve the ones already owned, thus allowing them to compete in more challenging races and progress further. Need For Speed: Heat is a little different. There are races to progress through, but whether winning them earns racers money or rep depends on whether they are racing during the day or under cover of night. There are also a lot - and we mean a lot - of other things to do away from the race track.
The extracurricular content in NFS: Heat can be split into two distinct categories: collectibles and activities. Each of those categories can be split further into three subcategories, which we will get to a little later. Combined, there are 435 different collectibles and activities to find and complete. That's on top of the regular races players will need to compete in order to progress through the game. To get through 100% the game, and get that platinum trophy/1000 Gamerscore, every single one of those 435 collectibles and activities will need to be completed.
Billboards, Flamingoes, & Street Art
First of all, the collectibles, which come in three forms: billboards, flamingoes, and street art. To collect a billboard, players will need to smash through them. In most of the 85 cases dotted around the map, that is easier said than done. As is often the case with billboards, they are pretty high off the ground. Most are accompanied by a well-placed ramp, but it'll take quite the run-up to gain enough momentum to smash through them in most instances.
As for the flamingoes and street art, those are far easier on the car's suspension. All they'll require is a little hunting but, as with the billboards, a prompt will appear when one is nearby. There are 100 flamingoes to find and all racers need to do to collect them is drive through them. As for the street art, there are 130 pieces to find. When one is in view, players just need to hit R1/RB.
Speed Traps, Long Jumps, & Drift Zones
Onto NFS: Heat's activities, of which there are far fewer - only 120. However, they are also split into three categories like the collectibles: speed traps, long jumps, and drift zones. Rather than collecting items or smashing through them, players will be tasked with doing things instead. Speed traps require players to hit a certain speed. There are three stars up for grabs at each of the 45 speed traps, but a very fast car will be required to get three stars on any and all of them.
The 40 long jumps and 35 drift zones will require a little bit of thought in terms of the car used to achieve them. Most of the jumps will need a run-up that starts off-road, so an off-road car with top-notch acceleration will be the best bet. As for drift zones, any car with great drifting ability will do. Again, most of them will likely need far higher stats than the ones cars start off with.
Players who have already started NFS: Heat might be wondering where all of these 400+ points of interest are on their own maps. Unfortunately, they are not immediately available right away. They will reveal themselves as players progress through the game, and items such as the flamingoes will need to be nearby before they'll present themselves. All of that makes NFS: Heat a pretty tough game to 100%. It might take a while.