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Burnout Paradise review

The old game blazes a new trail, with barely a wrong turn on the way

If you’re not the sort of person who enjoys collecting every little thing in a game and nailing it 100%, you might have trouble in Paradise. Aware that the free-roaming thing has muddied the game’s focus, Criterion have injected BP with a stack of other objectives. There are 50 GTA-style Super Jumps to find which you might discover at the top of a hill, say, or above a multi-story car park- and it’s massively exciting when you’re pelting down a road, spot a hidden alley out of the corner of your eye, and then hit a ramp and soar skyward. There are 400 secret gates to break down and 120 Burnout billboards dotted about to find and smash through.

Our favourite new mode is Marked Man, which tasks you to race to a checkpoint while a herd of computer cars gang up on you and try to ram you until your car is a write-off. Then there’s Stunt Race, which baffles the first time you play because you won’t have uncovered enough ramps and jumps to do stunts on and will fail dismally. Once you’ve found them, though, you can perform a satisfying array of leaps, slides and near-misses with the traffic and walls. Even with the map replacing the giant arrows of old, it’s still easy to hare off the wrong way and keeping an eye on the map and the on-road chaos at the same time is… well, ‘tough’ doesn’t even describe it. You get used to it, though, and as you learn the layout of Paradise City you’ll rely on your compass and map less.

More Info

DescriptionThe fifth installment to the series arrives promising "a truly next-generation game" and a seamless open-world environment.
Franchise nameBurnout
UK franchise nameBurnout
PlatformXbox 360, PS3, PC
US censor ratingEveryone 10+
UK censor rating7+
Release date22 January 2008 (US), 25 January 2008 (UK)