Burnout Paradise Review

Burnout: Paradise is the first of the series to make it to the PC. Although this is not developer Criterion’s first PC title, it is their first one since they started working with Electronic Arts. Their previous PC titles have gone largely unnoticed. Their last PC project was way back at the end of 2000.

Good

Vehicle Detail: As with most racing games, most of the graphical focus was put on the vehicles and it shows. The vehicles are made up of moderately high resolution textures. They are visibly better looking than the world around them. This isn’t to say that Paradise City looks bad. The city is well designed and good to look at. Getting up close and personal with some textures in the game will show them as being lower resolution then the car, but you won’t notice this while racing. During races the game makes liberal use of motion blur. The effect gives you an intense feeling of speed as you race along the city.

Open World: Burnout: Paradise is an open-world racing game. While that is not all the uncommon these days, Paradise takes it a step further. There are no set tracks. When a race tells you to get somewhere, you are free to take whatever path you want. This can be very confusing to people at first. Once you memorize where the end locations are, it will be a lot easier to plan your path. Before a race, the game will always tell you where to go and show you the map screen.

Online: Multiplayer in Burnout: Paradise is very fun. There are a few options for multiplayer, the best of which is Free Roam. Free Roam lets you just cruise the city with other players. In this mode you can have take down contests as the game keep tracks of how many take downs you have against each person. This mode is also good for getting billboards, super jumps, and smashes. Any of these that you hit during multiplayer will count towards your single player count. You can not do normal events or earn new cars online, however. I would honestly say that online is the best way to play Burnout: Paradise once you have you license upgraded.

Bad

Sound Selection: As you could expect from this type of game, the music is all licensed stuff. I wasn’t too thrilled by most of the music, so I turned it off. The number of tracks is too limited and all of them quickly get annoying. There is no option for a custom soundtrack and I feel that it should have been included. Thankfully the rest of the sound design is good. The vehicles all sound good and the crashes are very satisfying. The only voice work in the game is a female announcer when you first start your game and some guy named DJ Atomica who servers as the announcer the rest of the game. I find DJ Atomica to be a little annoying at times, but he doesn’t talk a lot.

Conclusion

Playing Burnout: Paradise has been a pleasure. I have enjoyed every second of my time with it and I think it is going to be well worth a purchase for arcade racing fans. It’s definitely not Grid and it’s nowhere near GTR. Burnout: Paradise is a pure arcade racer with no sim elements at all. Sim racer fans should not expect a real-world experience from this game. Burnout: Paradise is everything Need for Speed used to be. It’s just pure fun, no needless story, no useless crap. I will be looking forward to whatever else Criteron makes next and will also be keeping an eye on the upcoming DLC.

Burnout Paradise Review by Derangel