Burnout Paradise is over 10 years old now, but last year they released a Remastered edition which created a renewed interest in the game. I started my love for racing games with 1983’s Pole Position. I lived in Orlando, near a 7/11 and I can remember walking down to the store and wasting quarter after quarter on this game. Years later, when I had the PS1, it was the Gran Turismo series that stole my quarters so to speak.
Granted, Burnout Paradise isn’t that type of racing game, it’s not a simulator, you can’t upgrade, tune, adjust, or anything else the cars in this game, you just get newer versions that are slightly upgraded, and additional cars, but it’s probably a good thing in this game, I think it would take away from the straight out of the box fun.
Let’s start with this. This game is FUN. It’s all at the same time the ‘pop open the game a drive for 15 minutes’ or ‘run through a few different races’ or even ‘spend hours completing goals, smashing billboards or gates’ type of fun. All of the different race types add different factors, goals, smashes, “road rules” etc just add up to a lot of fun. Even the crashes are fun (and sometimes necessary)
One nice thing is that it’s an open world game, so even if you want to do nothing more than drive around enjoying the views, finding hidden paths, mega jumps, and unique areas you can do that as well. There is also a few dlc that add additional things like motorcycles, which are just a fun bonus.
For a 10+ year old game the graphics in this game are rather good. Check out the gameplay video above, or the screenshot gallery below for examples. As I mentioned above, last year they came out with a remastered version which improves graphics and includes all of the dlc. I don’t own it, but I have seen some videos of it, and the graphics certainly look a bit better.
The graphics may not be entirely realistic, for example it isn’t very realistic that you can smash head first into another car, roll four times, and drive away like it was a fender bender, but that kind of realism wouldn’t fit in a game like this. When you crash, sparks fly, glass shatters, body parts disintegrate and explode, with a big enough crash you get a special crash cam. When you are driving flames shoot out of your exhaust when you boost, tires smoke when you drift or take hard corners, cameras shake when you land hard or hit things, and there like the crash cam there is a special super jump cam which looks like it’s taking glamour shots of your car.
Just like the graphics, the sounds are good, but not realistic. I wouldn’t expect them to be, this isn’t a racing simulator where a Ferrari flat plane V8 is completely different and unique from a Lambo V10. The engines make sounds, they sound like powerful engines, some engines sound different, cars sound like cars, motorcycles like motorcycles, some of the cars are turbos but there is no boost or blow off valve sounds.
The rest of the sounds in the game are pretty good too, crashes, screeching metal, squealing tires, the clink-clunk of gear changes, blinker sounds when the game is directing you towards your goal are all realistic enough. The soundtrack is particularly good if you are into the type of music in the game. Bands like Guns and Roses, Innerparty System, Soundgarden, Depeche Mode, etc.
The amount of content in this game, which can easily be 100+ hours if you don’t try to rush through the game is pretty large. There are 120 different races, plus extra cars you have to find and “shut down” to earn, there are jumps, gates, billboards, “road rules” races and more. By the time you are done with the game, you won’t remember how it began, and you will want to start over.
In Conclusion, for a game that is a decade old, typically can be bought for under $20, this is a phenomenal game. All of the fun of an open world race game with lots of challenges but none of the tedious technical stuff, pretty good graphics and sound, rock and roll, quick races or all day marathons, and replay that is nearly infinite. Buy this game. Buy it twice and give it to a friend.
Burnout: Paradise Gameplay Review
Review of the PC Game Burnout: Paradise