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Review: Burnout Revenge

Questions were raised when Microsoft didn’t make Burnout: Revenge backwards compatible on the Xbox 360. But the unofficial answer came shortly after that: Criterion was planning a port of Burnout on the Xbox 360 with some new features and gameplay. Main question is whether it is really worth upgrading to the 360 version? But for all of you Burnout rookies out there who’ve never touched a single Burnout game before, be ashamed of yourself and read on.

Singleplayer – The basics
Whether you should buy this Xbox 360 version of the game or not really depends on whether you’re into the singleplayer part. The core gameplay completely remains the same compared to the Xbox, only small changes have been made. Most noticeable are the graphics of the game, everything’s updated from the CGI movies to the car damage model. But graphics alone don’t guarantee good gameplay. One of the new features is the record option. After you’ve completed a race you’re presented with the option to record your race and publish it online to show your pals. You can even get some achievements when playing with this feature.

The crash mode has been slightly adjusted as well. In the Xbox version you had some sort of a golf smash meter where you had to punch the button at the right time to get a good start. Now you always get the best start, so that’s less restarting to get the best takeoff. Talking about restarting, if you don’t make it to the gold medal just press the restart button and you’ll start over. And thank god that’s faster now, instead of moving from the place you crashed backwards to the start position in slow-motion (it felt like slow-motion) you now go back to the start position in a quick woosh.

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Now to tell you something more about the Burnout gameplay in general. In Burnout: Revenge there are basically 2 game types: racing and crashing. In the first one there are a number of variations apart from the normal race where you have to compete with other cars or compete with the clock. There’s a mode for instance where you have to smash as much traffic from behind as possible. And there’s another mode where you have to ‘take down’ a number of opponents while racing.

The second game type is ‘crash’, in this mode you have to crash into as much normal traffic as possible. Just slam your car into a junction and hope everybody crashes into the mess you’ve just created. If enough cars crash into the pile you’re able to use the crashbreaker. This feature allows you to detonate you car and cause even more destruction. Every car has a value and to win a gold medal in this mode you’ll have to destroy for a couple of million worth in cars. The downside to this is that it seems kind of random on how you land your car in a big pile of traffic when you fly off a ramp with 150 mph.

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Singleplayer – World tour
In the Singleplayer mode of the game you can either do a single race/crash or you can do the ‘campaign’ which is called World tour. In this mode there are 10 different ranks you can play on, from ‘Harmless’ to ‘Dominator’. These ranks can be compared to difficulty levels and you initially start the game with only harmless unlocked. By completing a race you can earn stars, and when you’ve gathered enough stars you go up in rank allowing you to play the next set of races. Every rank requires a bigger number of stars, and the maximum of 5 stars can only be acquired by racing like a madman and winning a gold medal. During a race you have to get the highest revenge rating as possible. A revenge rating rates from ‘ok’ to ‘awesome’ and can be achieved by smashing and crashing into your rivals or traffic. If you get an awesome rating and a gold medal you earned the maximum of 5 stars for a race and you’re ‘Perfect’.If you’re a gamerpoint junkie I suggest you don’t buy or rent this game, because there are only about 50 easy points, the rest will take you some time because you’ll have to complete almost the entire game on perfect and you need to have some insanely impossible multiplayer skills.

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Multiplayer
Besides the graphics I told you about, another considerable change has been made with the multiplayer features. Almost everything you play offline can be played online, but the best of online play is revenge. If someone takes you down in a race, you obviously want payback. If you don’t succeed in the same race, the game remembers who took you down and will warn you the next time you play online and encounter that person. You’ll probably start talking to yourself like I did ‘I’m gonna get you this time a-hole!’But unfortunately the quickmatch often hooks you up with people playing on the other side of the universe with a modem connection. You see some cars stuttering on the road, and one second you’re ahead of him, the other second he’s suddenly landing on your roof. Best is to force your friends into buying this game, you can all just play together without lag.

Graphics
My personal motivation to buy this game was the blurry horizon in the Xbox version, you could barely see what was in front of you. Playing this game on a high definition screen is a much better experience. I don’t crash into a hidden dumpster which looked like a car anymore.

Apart from the resolution change and the reworked models, they unfortunately didn’t put much time in the surroundings. The texturing of the buildings isn’t really next-gen. And the loading times, oh my god where did that come from? On the Xbox I was used to waiting (with games like Doom 3 and Half-life 2) but why on earth do I have to wait 20 seconds if I just want to restart a race?

Conclusion
If you already own the Xbox version of the game and play it on a non-HDTV and you’re not really into Live gaming, I suggest you keep the money in your pocket. But if you’re either new to the Burnout experience or you have a HDTV and love Live gaming, get your ass to the nearest shop and get a copy!

Final Score: 8 out of 10 - Good (how do we rank games?)

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11 comments on 'Review: Burnout Revenge'

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I just got it from Gamefly today. It’s fantastic, at least the singleplayer. I may play some online tonight.

Comment by Hoffer on 2006-03-17 05:06:17 | Reply

This is my second favorite racing game of all time. First being Mario Kart 64. Not that they are anything a like.

I’ve been spending tons of time on this game. There’s a lot of variety. Just finished some online racing with a couple friends. Great game for online stuff.

Comment by soul2soul on 2006-03-17 10:28:08 | Reply

Uhm the buildings in my verion sure look next-gen? weird.

Comment by Guy on 2006-03-17 14:27:33 | Reply

Hoffer, thanks for reminding us. Mario Kart 64 is without a doubt the greatest racing game ever made.

I’m affraid Mario Kart DS, is a fair bit better.

Comment by Dude on 2006-03-17 18:54:01 | Reply

Mario Kart 64 is much much better than Mario Kart DS, Double Dash, or any other MK. The game is pretty much flawless.

Comment by Hoffer on 2006-03-17 21:19:02 | Reply

I played MK64 for days on end. I was all pumped for the DS and GC versions, but played neither for more than a couple hours.

DS version is pretty good but as it stands I don’t play my DS much. Heck, I just like Mario Kart, and all my PGR friends know that PGR3 was my first non-Mario Kart racing game. And then they laughed. Scornfully.

But I think Diddy Kong Racing deserves some mad props. :P

Comment by Erich on 2006-03-21 16:36:11 | Reply

Can’t wait to see Gran Turismo 5 on PS3 ;-)

Comment by The_Glovner on 2007-08-03 15:09:36 | Reply

Couldn’t give a shit what it looks like, if it plays like previous GT then it will be shit, end of.

Comment by jordan on 2007-08-03 10:50:48 | Reply

it is a realy good game and i am on l 10

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