starting with the drawbacks: unlike previous installment, this doesn't have a local multiplayer. It's surprising to see that it becomes somewhat of a trend in the new generation era with the games like UNREAL TOURNAMENT & MOTORSTORM (although they fixed this with PACIFIC RIFT) lacking the local multiplayer option. Yes we have online & it's great & everything, but nothing can substitute good old splitscreen. Another drawback is video output which is limited to 720p. Plus, you can't restart the races instantly & the DJ Atomica's remarks on how much my driving skills suck every time I lose is a bit annoying really. & the biggest drawback is of course the absence of drivers in the cars, which I guess ESRB wouldn't allow for this game to get E10+ rating.
In spite of the fact that it's just 720p, the graphics of this game are spectacular. Being an avid follower of the series & thus being able to compare, this one clearly displays how much the transition to HD has actually advanced the video games in terms of visuals. Perceiving the urban/rural environment sets on ultra enormous speed gives an immense graphic pleasure.
BURNOUT is all about speed & crashes. In terms of speed they have gone very far with this one, so that it actually blows your mind away. On maximum speeds is where you can really comprehend the uniqueness of this game. They have increased the sense of gravity slightly in this one, so that you still break the laws of physics but this time it has better feeling of danger. The balance between the realistic & cartoonish is perfect.
Don't believe those who complain about the crashes being monotonous. In the beginning levels when the speed of your cars is low, the crashes look indeed boring & lookalike, but once the speeds go higher, the crashes become extremely spectacular & totally diverse, make no mistake about that, as this aspect is perhaps the most essential in BURNOUT games & they have done a terrific job, really.
In Showtime Mode (just press R1+L1 in the middle of the heavy traffic, & then jump around by pressing X) you can witness 100+ cars crash in one single take.
The soundtrack is awesome, Rock oriented, which is proper for the game which involves so much materials made with metal. So you are racing on a high speed with Jane's Addiction playing in the background & then suddenly you CRASH!, the music mutes instantly & there is complete silence so you can fully enjoy the sound of smashing glass & metal screeching on the surface of tarmac.
This game has an awesome update which you can download FOR FREE. It adds bikes & now you can drive at night, when the traffic is not as heavy.
It also has a great online multiplayer. Especially one option, when you take down the opponent you get his mugshot (which can be uploaded with PS eye) as a reward, like a scalp.
to sum up: BURNOUT PARADISE is an extremely exciting gaming experience & a perfect transition to HD for this cult game series.
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