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Two singles, "If I Ruled the World (Imagine That)" (featuring Lauryn Hill of The Fugees) and "Street Dreams", including a remix with R. These songs were promoted by big-budget music videos directed by Hype Williams, making Nas a common name among mainstream hip-hop.
In 1995, Nas did guest performances on the albums Doe or Die by AZ, The Infamous by The Infamous Mobb Deep, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx by Raekwon and 4,5,6 by Kool G Rap.
Steve Huey of All Music described Nas's lyrics on Illmatic as "highly literate" and his raps "superbly fluid regardless of the size of his vocabulary", adding that Nas is "able to evoke the bleak reality of ghetto life without losing hope or forgetting the good times".
Reviewing Nas's second album It Was Written, Leo Stanley of allmusic believed the rhymes to be not as complex as those in Illmatic but still "not only flow, but manage to tell coherent stories as well".
His 11th studio album, Life Is Good (2012) was nominated for Best Rap Album at the 55th Annual Grammy Awards.
In 2006, MTV ranked Nas at #5 on their list of "The Greatest MCs of All Time".