PS3 Reviews: Burnout Paradise Review

Members Login: Register | Why sign up? | Forgot Password?

Burnout Paradise Review

More Game Info (Print This Article)

Graphics:

 

9.2

Gameplay:

 

9.4

Sound:

 

9.0

Control:

 

9.0

Replay Value:

 

10.0

Online Gameplay:

 

9.0

Overall Rating:       9.1

 

 

Publisher:

EA

Developer:

Criterion Games

Number Of Players:

1-2 Players (8 Online)

Genre:

Racing

Release Date:

January 22, 2008

  The Burnout franchise has come a long way since its inception on the original PlayStation 2, back when the series was actually owned by [the now defunct] Acclaim. Electronic Arts has been with the franchise ever since Burnout 3, and because they were able to fund Criterion better than Acclaim could, the franchise was much better off with EA. We're now in another console generation, and for the longest time people had imagined just how surreal a Burnout game would be and how incredible the crashes would look. Thankfully, much of that anticipation and daydreaming has gone answered by the minds at Criterion, as we're looking at arguably the best Burnout game since Takedown.

   First thing's first, perhaps the most important aspect of Burnout's is its ridiculous sense of speed - it's one of the core traits of the game that helped it gather such an enormous fanbase. The sense of speed has gotten only better with every iteration, and Paradise is no exception. The game runs at 60 frames per second, while rendering at 720p. Even though there is no 1080i or 1080p support, this is still, without a doubt, one of the best running engines the generation has seen thus far. Burnout Paradise renders so much all in one time, that it's absolutely mind boggling that I've yet to experience the least bit of slow-down in the game - the framerate never bogs below 60.

   To give you an idea of just how capable this engine is, it utilizes a spectacular amount of real-time lighting touches, with sun glares, shadows, and beautiful reflections. Then, it renders a plethora of buildings and structures, none of which are repetitive. Texture detail is never sacrificed, as the world is lavished with slick textures. There's a good amount of civilian vehicles all around you, and much of what you see can be destroyed - so the environment is very interactive.

   But above all of that is just how utterly incredible the crashes look. They're absolutely brilliant. That's the sort of thing you'll keep saying to yourself while playing Burnout Paradise and witnessing the horrifically-awesome crashes. I mean really, describing this game's madness can only be filled with antonymic hyphenated descriptions - and I've already used one too many in this piece already. So, perhaps the point is clear, and by now you should be realizing just how spectacular Burnout Paradise looks. And to top it all off, there is barely a lick of aliasing (jaggies) to be found, in addition to any other visual imperfections. Burnout Paradise is one of the cleanest looking games out there.

   As far as gameplay, Paradise is a blast no matter what you're doing. Even when you're just wankering around, Paradise is a fantastic way to kill some time. Events and races are initiated by coming to stop lights and hitting the two trigger buttons simultaneously. Events vary from a standard point-to-point race, to Marked Man, Stunt Run, Burning Route, and Road Rage. So, as opposed to selecting from various modes, as you would in the past, all of Paradise's contents are now within its career mode.

   Marked Man is my favorite event; here you'll be chased by a horde of the same black cars as they try to destroy your car for good, preventing you from reaching a specific destination. It's very much like a cop-chase (the black cars even resemble the new Dodge Chargers), except they back off once you've crossed the finish. If you take too much damage too many times, you'll lose. But you are able to blast through a repair shop and have it all fixed up.

   Stunt run is pretty self-explanatory. Here, you'll want to rack up multipliers by performing barrel rolls off of ramps, taking high-flying jumps, drifting, among other rewarding tasks listed before each stunt run. Road Rage is essentially a competition to earn as many takedowns as possible within a certain amount of time. Burning Route requires you to use a specific car per event, and it is a race against the clock to the finish.

   Now, an open world format is mostly good, but there are drawbacks. Veterans may be turned off by this new transition at first, meanwhile free-roamers will end up enjoying it as it always keep them within the experience. My one complaint is that if you lose a race or event, instead of being able to restart it instantly, or pop your car back to the origin point, you have to drive all the way back to the event-trigger location. For the final release of the game, the issue doesn't bother me as much as I thought it would. Because there are so many events in the game, if I lose one, I just drive over to the nearest traffic light, begin another one, and worry about my lost event later.

   There's always something to do in Burnout Paradise, so the lack of a restart option hurts less - still it would have been nice, Criterion. When you aren't racing, you can do some hunting, and break through the 120 Burnout billboards scattered around Paradise City, smash through the 400 fences, find and complete the 50 Super Jumps, locate the 35 drive-thrus (repair shop, gas station for boost refill, paint shop), or own the 75 cars. Burnout Paradise has an extremely large scope, and completing it will take a very long time, so you're getting your money's worth here.

   Then there's the maniacally incredible Showtime Mode, which is what Crash Mode used to be. Instead of barreling down an intersection to cause catastrophic damage, you instead trigger Showtime Mode by pressing L1 and R1 simultaneously, which sends the car into a crash, allowing you then to hurl it around into other cars. Buses will give you a multiplier, as will destroying 10 cars, 30 cars, 50 cars, etc. You pop the car by pressing X, and then control its momentum with the left-analog stick. Every time you hit a car, your boost gauge fills up more and more. And every time you lift your car by pressing X, you deplete the boost gauge (basically, you pressing X makes the nitrous oxide cause explosions). There's a lot of fun to be had with Showtime Mode, it is one of the most enjoyable additions to a videogame yet.

   Lastly, there's the seamless online component which can take you on and offline in the blink of an eye. All you have to do is press Right on the D-pad, and you'll bring up your online options. There's a whole other game that comes alive when you go online, as a world of new challenges and events open up. All of that combined really makes Burnout Paradise feels like a limitless game. And just when I thought I was done, it must also be mentioned that wheel guys will be happy to know that Paradise does support Logitech wheels and force feedback, too.

   Burnout Paradise is a game that you absolutely have to play loud. If you're playing the game with measly little speakers and no subwoofer to speak of, you're missing a chunk of the fun. Hearing the impacts and feeling that gut-wrenching bass really adds that 'wow-factor' to each crash. Furthermore, the roar of the engines and the exhausts comes to life, as deep bass notes from the game's more muscular cars resonate superbly well.

   The soundtrack is rather decent, but I was rather appalled to see Avril Lavigne's "Girlfriend" in the track roster. But hey, you have the option of turning individual songs off, and a large collection of tunes from previous Burnout games are featured here - which is a plus. Some of the more solid acts include: Alice in Chains, Jane's Addiction, Killswitch Engage, Depeche Mode, Airbourne, Faith No More, N.E.R.D, Soundgarden, Twisted Sister, Guns N' Roses, Mexicolas, Junkie XL, and Jupiter One. And before you wonder, yes, Guns N' Roses' "Paradise City" is the game's theme song. Finally, online gamers will be happy to hear that voice support is also present.

   By now it's rather obvious that Burnout Paradise is the epitome of the entire franchise. It offers so much to the gamer, all without cutting corners or making any sacrifices in gameplay. It's online component can be added up to nearly half of the game's value, and the amount of things you can do in the single-player seems almost never-ending. The Showtime Mode is deliciously addictive, and the crashes are out of this world. And Criterion didn't skimp on either visuals or sound, as Paradise can be easily considered an achievement in visual detail and execution with its blistering framerate. This one is a keeper.

1/28/2008 Arnold Katayev

Put this on your webpage or blog:
Email this to a friend
Follow PSX Extreme on Twitter

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Share on MySpace Share on Delicious Share on Digg Share on Google Buzz Share via E-Mail Share via Tumblr Share via Posterous

Comments (20 posts)

Knightedrik
Wednesday, February 27, 2008 @ 3:50:08 AM
Reply

Every word said above is absolutely true.. this game is stunning.

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

erislocker
Tuesday, January 25, 2011 @ 12:13:08 PM

except that now you can restart lost events too! (aside from also having bikes to enjoy)

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

KidCallaway123
Thursday, February 28, 2008 @ 7:30:12 AM
Reply

As much as I agree with the review of this game I feel the need to lay out the negatives from my perspective.

Having been a HUGE fan of Burnout since playing "Revenge" I was really looking forward to this game. Let me just say that although Paradise has some advantages over Revenge it is absolutely NOT a better overall gaming experience (at least it is not as much fun).

After playing it now for a couple of weeks I can say without a doubt that Paradise is a VERY difficult and frustrating game to play. As pointed out in the review the racing aspect of the game is especially annoying because you will often miss or make a wrong turn and that mistake will cost you a win... and you HAVE to WIN every event to get credit towards advancing your license, no seconds or thirds make the grade. It also takes too many wins to upgrade your license as well.

I preferred the old set up of different stages to this open format too. It is just really too much work to memorize this entire city landscape in order to really enjoy this game (which is what you have to do).

Also Crash mode was totally awesome! You were set up for a situation to try and cause the most damage possible with a $$$ goal to achieve. Why they would change that is beyond me... Showtime mode to me is not anywhere near as much fun.

Road Rage is BY FAR the best part of the game and the most fun. Stunt mode is fun also IF you can locate all of the jumps near the starting point BEFORE you try the event.

Marked Man is not much fun at all (although challenging) you just get the snot kicked out of your car by countless black machines trying to get to the finish line... very frustrating!

Another bone to pick I have is the controls... Why not just make the R3 analog stick the gas and brake??? The R2

Agree with this comment 0 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

KidCallaway123
Thursday, February 28, 2008 @ 7:35:06 AM
Reply



Another bone to pick I have is the controls... Why not just make the R3 analog stick the gas and brake??? The R2

Agree with this comment 0 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

duffman2340
Monday, March 17, 2008 @ 1:19:59 PM
Reply

i have to agree with most of what kidcallaway said, too many wins to advance and why change the crash mode if it wasnt broken. everyone i talk to basically says that was the best part of the previous games and to just erase that from the next gen version just seems odd...

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

KidCallaway123
Tuesday, April 08, 2008 @ 11:49:16 AM
Reply

After playing this game off and on now since January I have to admit that it continues to grow on me.

The Showtime mode is a BLAST!! Once you get into it, it really does rival the old Crash mode, maybe it is better. My friend's best crash total was 200 cars and 10 million dollars!! It was an awesome thing to watch!! My personal best was 177 cars and 6.5 mil...

Racing gets a bit easier once you get used to the controls and get better (faster) cars. It took a long while for me to get used to the R2/L2 gas and brake combination.

The burning routes are especially difficult to beat. You often need to try them several times before you can win. The option for a re-start would have been really a nice addition most of all. I spend lots of time driving back to where I started now that I am working on the "Elite" license (only 70 more wins to go!!).

Even though I have my Burnout license I still have only unlocked about 41 of the 80 cars available. So there is still lots of work to do!

Has anybody unlocked one of those Black chase cars from the Marked Man events?? I WANT ONE OF THOSE BAD!!!!

Stunt mode is still the one area of the game I have yet to enjoy. It is so far too difficult to find and make the necessary series of stunts to beat the events for me.

Overall I have to say the replay value of 10 is definitely justified!!

This game truly does KICK ASS!!

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

cr67
Sunday, July 20, 2008 @ 10:35:45 PM
Reply

I absolutely LOVE this game! Although I'm going to have to break down and spend the 150 bucks and get a decent "wheel" to drive with as opposed to the PS3 joystick. Regardless, the graphics are incredible and the framerate is flawless. I also agree with Arnold. Having a great surrround sound system w/sub hooked up to your PS3 is a must and this game rocks with the sound cranked. Like the previous posters have noted, the "Showtime" mode is awesome and a blast to play. I've played this game for hours and I've still only got 4 cars out of the 75 available, so I know I'll be playing this Burnout Paradise for a very long time. The ONLY thing I don't like about this game is that you have to place 1st in every race in order to get points and/or advance. I can't tell you how many times I've come in 2nd or 3rd across the finish line only to not have it not count because 1st place is a must in this game. Bummer! Aside from that, this game is a must have for everyones collection. Plus it's currently on sale at WalMart for 36 bucks, so you can't beat that, especially when every other PS3 game is at least 50-60 bucks. Need for Speed Pro Street doesn't hold a candle to this game, so do yourself a favor and pick up a copy the next chance you get!

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

JONAUS
Wednesday, February 04, 2009 @ 8:47:58 PM
Reply

ITS NOT THE WORST GAME IVE EVER PLAYED BUT ITS RIGHT NEXT TO IT

Agree with this comment 0 up, 3 down Disagree with this comment

Ninjamage93
Tuesday, July 14, 2009 @ 6:27:29 AM
Reply

i thinks its an amazing game everything amazing,sound,graphics and especially the music i like to free-play around the city and drift around umm so i suggest it for any race gaming lover or even street racing game lover xD so yeah...

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:41 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:42 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:44 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:44 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:46 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:47 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:49 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:50 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:52 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:53 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

crunchy_nut_kid
Thursday, October 28, 2010 @ 9:48:55 AM
Reply

i haven't got the game but i had had burnout3:takedown which is still in my top 5 games ever. the best part was road rage. i felt so amazed when you rammed a car and then the race slowed down to view that crash then continued. i hope this games is that F-ing AWESOME!!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Leave a Comment

Please login or register to leave a comment.

Our Poll

What do you think about The Last Of Us: Remastered?
Fantastic! Can't wait to get it!
Good, not sure if I'll buy immediately.
Eh, not bad, but I don't care.
It's just a stupid money grab.

Previous Poll Results