Review by maximus2242
"While Dimsighted and Short-lived, Burnout offers some form of 'fun.'"
The graphics are very solid, especially at 60 frames per second. Plus, Criterion Games added excellent lighting effects and textures. The cars aren't that visually impressive in terms of details at the level at Gran Turismo 3, but conduct themselves well. Furthermore, there are dozens of other cars on the road that you must avoid or crash into. The backdrops such as rivers, mountains, cities are pretty and at times you can't help yourself but be amazed. There are some 14 tracks in the game from various locations loosely based on places in the United States and Europe. IGN reports that the game is pushing about 10-12 million polygons/second, which is quite impressive. While not the most visually pleasing game available, it does look very nice and is exceptionally fast.
The crash scenes are well tuned, and damage to your car is readily apparent when the windshield shatters or other damage features show. Plus, in the Replay mode, the game looks much better and flashier.
The game encourages young gamers to crash their vehicles into objects and other cars in order to run up a high insurance bill. Players don't feel the effects of the crash and are in good health condition. Furthermore, conducting in high speed races is illegal and dangerous. Though that won't take from the score, its a bad choice if you are a good, law-abiding citizen.
The handling in the game varies and it can be difficult to control some of the cars, especially with high difficulty vehicles. There is a rush, especially speeding through at 130 miles per hour through 4 lanes (8 if you drive on both sides of the road). However, ramming into cars, even at a moderate speed will automatically lead you to a crash scene. It can be frustrating and eats up your time. Still, if you take risks you charge up on Turbo. Its similar to Crazy Taxi, except you get Turbo instead of money. However, crashing will reduce your turbo. When using turbo, the effects are nice, boosting your speed and catching up to the other 3 CPU racers. The game can get tedious, as races often last up to nearly 10 minutes. If you run out of time, it can be a pain to retry each race.
The music in the game is terrible, featuring a very poor soundtrack and otherwise generic or bland music. The other sounds, like your engine are acceptable, but repetitive. The game also makes use of Dobly Surround Sound, but the sound overall is still poor.
Replay Value: 13/25
You can unlock all the championships, cars and levels, but that should not take longer than only a few weeks. The game also has a Survival Mode, where players can try to go through races without crashing. Still, most of the game can be unlocked within a rental or two and isn't worth the $50. The 2-player multiplayer is nice, but it isn't something that could be played on multiplayer continuously like an FPS or sports game.
The game is one of the few racing games available for the Gamecube and is arguably the Gamecube's best racing game. However, that doesn't say much for the Gamecube's racing selection. Still, the multiplayer is nice and the game is fun, yet short. The game deserves a rental from regulars and can be considered a buy for racing fans.
Final Score: 89/140
Gamefaqs score of 6 or 6.4 (rounded down)
Final Comments: The game features very solid graphics but is insufficient to be considered a solid purchase for most Gamecube fans. Still, it is definitely worth a rental and Burnout 2 (late October/Winter 2002) release can heavily improve on the original, especially with the solid graphics already established.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 06/29/02, Updated 06/29/02
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