Burnout Paradise (Xbox 360) review
"If anyone has read my regular articles as of late, you would know that the reason this review has been put off for so long is because of my wife and her obsession with giving gifts for Valentine's Day. So anyway, without further adieu, I give you the review of Burnout: Paradise for the 360. "
If anyone has read my regular articles as of late, you would know that the reason this review has been put off for so long is because of my wife and her obsession with giving gifts for Valentine's Day. So anyway, without further adieu, I give you the review of Burnout: Paradise for the 360.
Since Burnout first graced the PS2, Xbox, and Gamecube back in 2001, the formula hasn't changed much. You get a car, drive it real quick into the side of a car that is in the general vicinity of where you are, and fuck up their Christmas. Now most people thought the franchise couldn't get much better after Revenge came out in 2005, but little did those people know that Criterion Games had a little trick up their sleeve: the all too common free-roaming environment.
Now that is not to say that the free-roaming environment is not a bad thing, it's just predictable.
First up, let's talk the visuals. From the last game that I reviewed, Wangan Midnight, I would like to say that this is seriously good looking. Now it is not nearly as good looking as Mass Effect was, but then again I don't think there will be a game that can top that (at least until Mass Effect 2: More Blue Boobies comes out.). The game has it all when it comes to graphics, and it doesn't suffer from the super bloom that Halo 3 had while doing it. Everything, from the cars to the cityscapes, the scrapes and the crashes, are all rendered in gloriously beautiful detail. The differences between the 360 and PS3 versions are very minute, so you don't feel cheated when you buy either version.
The game play is as equally beautiful as the environment you are fighting against. You drive at breakneck speeds though the streets of Paradise City in 5 different race types and 2 non race side games. In Race you race against at least one other guy. The player is given a location to race to, the player can take any route through the city to the location with the aid of a flashing road names at the top of the screen when the player is advised to turn. First one to arrive wins. This is the only available mode online. Online races can also include checkpoints that need to be crossed before reaching the finish. In Road Rage the player is given a target number of takedowns and a time limit. A Road Rage event is won by meeting or exceeding this target in the given time limit. In Marked Man, the player is given a destination. At least 1 opponent is trying to stop the player from reaching the destination by scoring takedowns against them. The player must survive from start to finish in order to win (the player can crash/be taken out, but loses the event if he totals the car). In Stunt Run players are given a target score, and they must earn points towards that score by using boosts, jumps, drifts and other such stunt moves. Finally in Burning Route each Burning Route race requires the player to use a specific car. Once the player is driving the required car, they race against the clock to a specified location. When a Burning Route is won the player wins an upgraded version of the vehicle they completed it with. The upgraded vehicle can boast extra boost power, more base speed or a stronger body (but usually in exchange for another category). This is the only kind of event that doesn't reset when the player earns a new license because it's tied to the car used to run it rather than the license level the player is presently at. The "Showtime" event is the crash mode from previous installments, only accessible at any time and a wee bit frustrating on the less crowded roads. The "Own the Road" is quite similar to the Burning Route but on ever road and you can use any car to complete them.
Control is also extremely well done. All of the cars are balanced against each other and the other cars in their class. The only control issue I have is that sometimes you’re doing a barrel-roll you will not be able stop your car form landing top first onto the pavement.
The only thing I can think of that is a problem is the one major change that Criterion did to spice up the game play: the environment. At times it seems that the games biggest strength is also the games biggest weakness. One of the most shining examples of this is in the traffic that you are fighting against. I am not kidding when I say that I have been hit with a fucking Gillette Fusion over 45 times while playing this game. Now I don't know what Gillette did to piss off the developers, but the vans in this game have cost me too many races for me to EVER want to buy a Gillette product EVER again (it also doesn't help that I have to buy razors because they make you shave in the military).
Overall the experience you have in Burnout Paradise is truly one in a million. You simply owe it to yourself to play this game and play it to its fullest extent.
Community review by RecentElectronics (February 22, 2009)
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