Review by Angel Omega 11

"At this rate of speed even a nascar driver would wet himself..."

When Burnout was released for the Gamecube in mid 2002 it received little hype and yet came out to a variety of moderate reviews. Most of the things were considered average by several reviewers and it was commonly put in toward the high end of the dime a dozen racers. That was just it though, it was considered a dime a dozen racer.

The concept of Burnout was simple enough, charge your boost meter by several methods, all of which involved driving dangerously, boost to crazy speed by burnout, and win the race. If you happened to crash along the way you would be sent flying out of control while a camera covered your crash in all its glory, right down to the last piece of flying sheet metal.

Thankfully for Gamecube owners Burnout 2: Point of Impact is back in blazing glory.

Gameplay 9/10
Burnout 2 has phenomenal speed and insanely fun courses and modes, including crash mode with twice the number of crashes in the original, and pursuit, as sort of Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2 style mini game. The main mode in Burnout 2 is championship mode where you compete to unlock more cars and tracks.
In all of the modes Burnout 2 is a blinding array of shapes and objects as you get a burnout chain going. There's nothing quite like the feeling of flying down the road at speeds that could, if you hit a bump, send your car flying through the air, and most likely into whatever is around it, be it car, building, or the scenery around it. Thanks to the awesome controls this is easy to do and enjoyable. The only place where gameplay suffers is during crashes. While crashing is great fun in crash mode, it becomes a hindrance when the physics engine feels something on the last lap of a race that isn't there and sends you into the wall and 7 or 8 other cars that just happen to be driving to somewhere. (Although its entirely possible they're just driving in a circle as there only appears to be about 20 types of traffic in the game) The problem with the physics engine is minor and for the most part can be overlooked.
A major problem with Burnout 2 is the difficulty. At best you consider it medium, but the problem is it changes a lot. There are challenges in the beginning that will drive you nuts, but there are moments so easy a monkey could beat them.

Control 10/10
What's not to like about the controls? They're standard and comfortable. Aside from that they're super responsive. The Gamecube controller was designed for this game.

Story N/A
It's a racing game, what story...?

Graphics 8/10
Very nice, but don't be expecting Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec, yet they are still extremely nice for the Gamecube.The car models are wonderfully done, and the tracks are beautiful. The crashes are spectacular and the effects like and metal are amazing. However, it would have been nice to see more interactive environments, and more well done backgrounds. In cases the mountains and grass around you looks like carpet from the Home Depot and poorly recreated carpet. Also there are some glitches in the crashes that send your car up or down and you don't see it till the game fixes it...what's up with that? These are minor things though that you really won't notice due to the fact that the game moves so fast you can't tell until you crash.

Music 6/10
Nothing memorable really to speak of here, its just your average arcade racer music. Nice but nothing to crank loud as your speakers go.

Sound Effects 8/10
The sound effects are excellent. The only deduction given is for the fact that after you play the same exact crash mode course or other challenge for the 50th time and still miss the medal you'll want to rip your hair out from both the grating sounds or metal on metal, and the frustration of not getting that darn medal...

Play Time and Replayability 9.5/10
Got friends?
If you do you can spend 30 hours easily playing it with them and another 20 - 30 by playing crash mode and all the other one player modes by yourself. It's a good game to have a round when you have nothing better to do and just want to squeeze in a good 20 - 30 minutes of mayhem.

Positives
+ Control is excellent.
+ It has plenty of modes that you won't get bored with for a while.
+ The graphics are stunning and its one of the best racers on the Gamecube.
+ The Crash Mode and Multiplayer will keep you busy for a long time to come.
+ There is plenty of variety with 30 courses to drive, and more then 15 cars.
Negatives
- Sound is sub par
- Some gamers won't appreciate the convoluted thinking of driving dangerously not to crash, in a game designed for crashes.

Buy or Rent?
Buy.
With all this game has going for it, I highly recommend you buy it. It's definitely worth taking the time to look for, so if you see it pick it up.
Final Rating 8.4


Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 03/25/04

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