Review by dirtycup II

"Pretty good for racing fans, and fair enough for those that aren't"

The Gamecube is a great machine if you like sports titles. It may not beat the PS2 or X-Box in terms of the sheer number of sports games, but it does fairly well when compared to the competition. But is the Gamecube a real competitor for racing games? Not yet. Wave Race is fun, but very short and flawed in many areas. Extreme G3 is fun, but isn't realistic. Neither is Cel Damage, or The Simpsons Road Rage, or even Driven. 18 Wheeler is more driving than racing. There are other extreme racing titles, but there aren't really any good, realistic, near-simulation racing games out yet. Until Burnout.

Burnout is not a simulation racer when compared to, say, GT3. There is no upgrading, buying parts, unlocking every car ever made, etc. The cars don't advertise big name automotive companies. Is this game as even remotely realistic, you ask? Yes is the answer. The controls make you feel like you are driving an actual car, not a kart. The crashes are incredible, making you feel like you're really there. The one real downside to this game (besides not being able to upgrade your car) is the fact that there is no inside view. The isn't a huge deal to some, but I like the feel of a 1st-person view.

So, is Burnout worth it? It is really up to you. Hardcore racing fans will be at least mildly pleased, if not ecstatic about this title. Casual fans can also find many enjoyable things in this game. I myself am not really a racing fan, but I enjoyed this title fairly well. It is fun, fast enough to be exhilarating but not so fast that it's unrealistic, and overall can be a worthy purchase. Read on.

Graphics: 8/10

The single player mode has great graphics. Detailed backgrounds, high polygon models, good texturing and lighting, constant framerate, and no fogging. The crashes are fantastic, yet occasionally one may look a bit choppy and seems to be missing a frame or two. There may be several cars on the road all at once and the game doesn't slow down. Multi-player, on the other hand, is quite noticeably crap. Bad framerate, more pixelation, and you won't even recognize it as the same game. If you plan on playing with friends, make the graphics a 6/10 in my book.

Controls: 6/10

You feel like you're really driving a real car. You know what that means? Bad turns, slower response, and tough handling. Then again, that's what you get when pay for realistic handling. I'll stick with kart racing controls any day.

Gameplay: 7/10

Fun crashes, fun one player mode, fun game. Short game, however. After you're done, going back isn't nearly as fun as when you went through it the first time. This game does get old after awhile, but it's great while it lasts.

Sound: 5/10

The music isn't anything to call home about, unless you're calling to complain. Basically you have a less than mediocre tune the first lap, then you have the exact same tune for every race on the final two laps. The sound effects are pretty good and appropriate for the situations. They hardly save this game's audio section, however.

Replay: 7/10

After you're done, it's occasionally fun to back and race again if you like racing, but the casual fan will get bored fast. The game's replay is greatly helped my the fact that the crashes are so intense. It's fun having your car flip over five times in the air then land on the hood of another car, resulting in a four car pile-up.

Buy or rent:

Fans of racing games will be pleased by Burnout, but casual fans shouldn't buy this game without renting it first.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 06/25/02, Updated 06/25/02

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