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4.1 out of 5 stars
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4.1 out of 5 stars
Platform: Xbox 360|Edition: Standard|Change
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VINE VOICEon 28 January 2008
Having read some reviews on Amazon and playing the dreadful demo I was pretty much put off buying this game. But then I recalled the demo of 'Revenge' being just as lacklustre and had a look at some other reviews on independant gaming sites e.g. 9/10 from gamespot. At which point I went and got it the day of the release. To put this into perspective I have 97% complete on the previous Xbox release 'Revenge' and had been waiting for this game for what seemed like eons so I am a big fan and wasn't going to be put off by a few odd people moaning about the demo. Critereon have produced a really good game here and then shot themselves in the foot with the demo. Forget the demo, the real McCoy is here and it is brilliant.

Gone are the painfully slow loading screens and equally irritating reloads and run throughs if you messed up a crash event - this is as close to seamless as it can get in terms of save/load functionality. The single player 'campaign' for want of a better term makes you work for license upgrades from learner, to C, B, A, Burnout and then Burnout Elite by doing races, takedown challenges and stunt challenges. The graphics are great as ever and the feeling of speed is unlike any other racing game.

The 'side quests' are discovery challenges like finding all the special jumps, barriers across shortcuts, car parks, drive thrus (were you can get a re-spray, swap cars, fill up your boost and fix damage) and then time challenges for each road on the map and 'show time'. Show time basically replaces the crash events in previous versions of the game allowing you to enter into a crash at any point in the game and guide your gravity defying wreck through the $ valued vehicles to try and beat preset offline records and online records.

The increase in difficulty as your license progresses is well judged and discovery of shortcuts is rewarded and integral to the game. Another integral thing, and I suppose the most fundamental change, is need for good navigation skills. The idea of a linear route with a few shortcuts has gone out of the window. All you are told for a race event is the start and end point - how you get there is up to you. However, there are a number of good features to help you navigate - road signs flash to tell you to hang a left or right as you approach junctions, your indicators blink and if you are really struggling you can skip over to a big map with the touch of a button, the game pauses and lets you think about where you need to go. You need to have some patience as you get used to this new feature but eventually you will grow to love it.

One thing which usually trips up open-world design games such as this is the time it takes and the irritation factor of having to walk (or drive in this case) around looking for events. This is definately not the case in Burnout Paradise - there are things to do on pretty much every road junction clearly colour coded and described on the large map. The time it takes to burn from one junction to another is nowhere near how long it used to take 'Revenge' to load / re-load events. those people who moaned about the lack of variety in the game obviously were only reviewing the demo - the full map has the equivalent of White Mountain, Sunshine Keys, Motor City etc. in different areas of the city.

The only downsides of this game I can think of is that most of the EA Trax are not to my taste and I actually ended up switching them off. Also some reviewers have said that the DJ Atomica voice over is irritating - I would agree but he does every now and again give useful advice - replacing the on screen tips you used to get while you were waiting for levels to load. other things that might have been nice but I can understand why they aren't there are weather/time of day effects and pedestrians. But in a driving paradise who wants people getting in the way?

To summarise I think this game could have been subtitled 'Freedom' as it removes all the tedious constraints present in previous versions of Burnout. I am an out and out Burnout fan and I am in no way disappointed, if you can't read a map stick to PGR.
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on 10 June 2009
I'm not a racing gamer. Most driving games are really difficult to control unless you know what you're doing and I usually don't have fun. But in the case of Burnout Paradise, my opinion has completely changed for this game.

You have a huge variety of cars to pick from, the controls are really easy, allowing you to have really good control over the car, beautiful graphics, you get free roam over the entire island, which is fantastic and most of all, slow motion crashes!

If you've had a really stressful day, I found Burnout Paradise was an excellent way to releaving that stress, either smashing up your car at high speeds or smashing someone else's!

The online gameplay is excellent as well. There's always people on the servers and a lot more challenges if you've completed the main game. But you have to make sure you have a good car, because you'll always have at least one person online that will do everything they can to smash up your car for points. Unless you play the game until you get a good car, you won't last long online.

Overall a fun game with brilliant graphics. A must have for any 360 collection.
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on 26 January 2008
This was hyped up to be the first really intense game of 2008. I watched every trailer and video I could find and was really excited for it to come out,Anyways, I just got it yesterday.

After first going through a long setup and turoral video that plays before you can start they give you yuor first car and pretty much take you by the hand step by step on how to start races, where to get you car repaired, and pretty much everything else that you can do in the game. This is nice since it is such a indepth game. Once I got myself started I noticed that the controls and gameplay were very similar to Grand Theft Auto in that it's not only an open world where you can go pretty much anywhere, but also there are sub missions that you can play such as crashing through billboards, finding 'No Enterance' gates to crash through, and a mode called SHowtime where you basically create the ultamate accident by fliping your car into traffic and collecting points for how much damage you cost them.

The races are intense. There are no rules what so ever! No tracks that say go here then here. If you can find a better shortcut, take it. Though side streets, jumps off broken bridges (which this game has tons and tons of), and of course running the other cars off the road which also gives you more boost for your car.

One thing that dissapointed me about this game were the crashes. Yea, there very detailed and what not but you have no way of changing the camera angle. This was one of the things that I was most excited about and while they are well done, you're still limited.

Over all, I would have to say that this is a fun game that does keep your interest. If you liked Grand Theft Auto's miles and miles of open road and free gameplay then this you will like. Dont ask me about the online features since I have no idea. But single player is fun enough and off of that I can say I recomend this game.
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on 17 November 2014
Product and delivery were excellent but game is terrible, got it as I loved burnout takedown but this doesn't even have 2 player and the game story/missions is way too complicated. Think I will stick to takedown.
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on 10 March 2008
I am a die hard Burn out fan and when I saw the Paradise in develeopment I wet myself!! after months of waiting I had to buy it on the release date and ran home like a gleeful 12 year old kid who'd been told school was closed because of a snow day!!
Then I put it in the machine and...... WASN'T that impressed...
I was shocked WHAT THE HELL HAD THEY DONE TO BURNOUT???? why could I not check sameway traffic? Where was my Crash breaker? Why was I driving round a dumb city in a slow ass car? What happened to the fun thrill ride I knew and Loved?? EVERY GRIPE previous reviewers have had I had BELIEVE IT!
Ladies and gentleman I am here to tell you if you give this game a chance you will abandon your old religion and join the church of Paradise!! First off every one who played the demo BELIEVE ME it does not do the ACTUAL game justice (graphics/speed/playability nada.) You need a bit of time to get this game for several reasons:
1.) The first few cars you get are DELIBERATELY SLOWER to get you used to the driving system and the principle of the games and developing familiarity with a couple of routes and landmarks (there is a great learning curve hear perfectly pitched to help you get used to the different strengths and weaknesses of each car type and style!) If you had the cars I have now at the Start? you would crash every time you turn on the engine!!
2.) The free burn element of the game is not a weakness AS EVEN I Thought (any one who knows me knows I hate admitting i'm wrong but...) the reason this exists rather than simply teleporting you to the next event is so you CAN drive around and DISCOVER new and insane short cuts, jumps billboards that aren't even marked on your map!! If I had a pound for every time i've been on a drive and gone huh? where does this go? SWEEEEETTT!!!!
3.) The fact you cant just smack everyone out of the way with a well timed nudge is a blessing as far as skill and longjevity of this game go!! Every time you go up a rank or complet more events you will start noticing more traffic on the road ;-) this is DELIBERATE and will quickly start to remove you from your comfort zone and demand you give up on Silly things like blinking!!

That takes care of the things I initally hated now the things I loved!! Blistering pace, awesome soundtrack, beautiful cars that look like a post pimp my ride jobby and I have not even been on line to play this yet where it can only get better!!

Nuff said BUY IT and if you don't believe me rent it then come back and thank me!!!
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on 10 October 2009
I think the game's main strength is its humour, which is delivered through DJ Atomica's broadcasts. The object of the game is to get your Burnout License, and you do this by completing events. These range from your standard Point to Point races, Stunt Runs, Road Rage, and Marked Mans. Complete a certain number and you get a mark on your license, inching you closer to the next class. They're all good fun, though there are some niggles (aren't there always though?) First, the races are somewhat easy. This is not a complaint, as i came to this game straight from Midnight Club LA. It was a relief to not be cheated out of my wins for a change. Second, the AI in the Marked Man events is occasionally too aggressive. Yes i know they're trying to destroy me but i'm driving what is supposed to be the strongest vehicle around and these sedans are pushing me around like a piece of tin foil? Come on now.

Another complaint is, there is no "jump to nearest race" or "jump to nearest junkyard" button, meaning if your race terminates at the observatory (in the mountains), it's another long drive back to civilisation. While it's not an issue when you're just starting (as you can find plenty of things to do on your way back), by the time you've got about 16 wins left on your Burnout License, it's just a drag. Not to mention, there are too few Junkyards and Repair shops in that area

Besides these License advancing events, there are also a bunch of things for you to do while in Paradise City: Set Lap Times on each and every street/road (online and offline times), set Showtime road rules on each and every street/road (online and offline scores), destroy Smashes (400 of them), destroy billboards (120 of them), and find Superjumps (50 of them). If that isn't value for money i don't know what is.

There are 75 total cars, although at least half of them are simply the same car in a snazzy paint job. You get them by completing burning routes (yet another event) but then, completing the required burning route also gives you a mark on your License, so it's a two for one deal. They all feel differently and handle differently, although there's a degree of similarity in the car classes: Stunt cars tend to be wily and skittish, Aggression cars tend to steer like a drunk cow and Speed cars get to 60 in about half a second. Well, assuming you don't spin out of control first. The individual cars are different enough that you don't feel like you're driving the same thing in a new body, thanks to the sound design. I won't say it's spectacular or something, but it's pretty good, such that all the cars and crashes and skids sound different.

The in-game music... could have been much better. I mean seriously, Mozart? Beethoven? Dude i'm burning along at what seems like 300mph, the last thing i want to hear is the marriage of figaro (i don't think that's actually in the game, i'm just saying). There are precisely TWO songs i like in the game's entire playlist: Paradise City by Guns & Roses, and Girlfriend, by Avril Lavigne. I think it's a bit of a let down, considering that your guide to the city is "DJ Atomica", who makes witty broadcasts from an unknown location... and who could have been the "source" of your music. Like, they could have integrated the music with his radio station is what i mean. As it is, the music just plays in a loop and i let it because there's no point making a playlist when i only like two of the songs

The city itself is okay, as far as videogame cities go... It doesn't feel as real as midnight club's LA -well, that one's based on an actual city- nor does it feel as alive as Liberty city -which is modelled on a real city too... I dunno, you just get the feeling that it's a little too clean, a little too perfect, certain things and places a little too convenient and conducive to racing.

I guess that's why they call it Paradise City

All in all, it's a great game, definitely worth the time and money i've invested in it
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VINE VOICEon 4 February 2008
'Burnout Paradise' is the fifth entry in the successful racing/smash-em-up series and is probably the best yet, giving you full access to over 250 square miles of the beautiful Paradise City.

GAMEPLAY - 5/5
Instead of going through levels like on the previous Burnout games, the city is completely open so you can just drive about finding secret locations, or pull up to the traffic lights you can take part in one of hundreds of challenges that include races, takedowns, marked man and burning laps. When crashing into another car, if you hold shoulder buttons it will start Showtime mode (which is basically the same as Crash mode) where you must cause as many crashes as possible to build up the cost meter. The best thing about Burnout Paradise is the online play through Xbox Live where you can play against and with your friends in a series of multiplayer challenges, where there are over 350 to choose from.

GRAPHICS - 5/5
Some of the best so far on the 360. Driving around the city is just so lifelike and if you have played the previous games you may recognise some of the sections from those games. It's just a shame that the games is so fast, as you miss out on looking at the gorgeous locations.

SOUND - 3/5
The engine noise and helpful tips from the DJ accompany a soundtrack that won;t be to everyone's taste (mainly rock songs). From the likes of Guns N Roses to NERD as well as all of the tracks from Burnouts 1 to 3. Once you have played this for about 5 or 6 hours though, the track loops will have you switching the sound off.

LIFESPAN - 4/5
You'll either love or hate the open city format. If you love it (which you most likely will if you take it online) the amount of hours you can play this is endless. As well as the 100s of challenged, you can create your own race types and invite your friends and the variety is unlimited. Offline however only has a limitied appeal as driving around the city on your own can get a little boring and you'll feel the lack of competition a bit underwhelming.

OVERALL - 4/5
Burnout Paradise is a good, fun game that moves at an incredible pace. There's plenty to unlock and the city is massive, so lots to explore. The online play works perfectly but as an offline game it gets dull fairly quickly and lets the game down, stopping me from giving it the full 5 out of 5 rating. Highly recommended for Xbox Live players though.
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on 8 August 2011
I bought this game and then I found out in order to unlock other parts of the map, you have to buy Microsoft points. No way am I falling for that! We should be able to unlock other parts of a map for free by achieving stuff such after winning races. Then I found out we have to buy more Microsoft points to buy certain cars. What a rip-off. Haven't Criterion Games heard of letting us make money after winning races to buy more cars. It seems Burnout Paradise is a rip-off because all the fees buying the Microsoft points that we shouldn't have to do makes the game a lot more expensive and it could be more expensive than buying any other video game. If you want to save money, stay well away from this game. Also the driving controls suck big time. The slightest touch of the stick and the camera angles spin around like crazy and you'll be more likely to crash and screw-up your car.
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on 24 January 2008
I've been lucky enough to play a copy of this in the US as it was released a few days before the EU version, and have to say that despite initial reservations, I have found it extremely fun and very accessible. Driving games are not my usual fare, given that I prefer RPGs and FPS games, but found this particularly fun.

Every intersection boasts a new event, ranging between simple races, Stunt combos in which you try to do as many insane stunts as possible to earn points, Road Rage, which involves smashing a set number of opponent cars, and Burning Routes designed specifically for particular cars.

Also included are Road Rules, first being the fastest time to complete a given street, and the second being the highest amount of damage during a crash. For those with a Live Gold account, you can play up to seven other people in the city, and it also updates you as to the various high scores.

There are also super jumpers to find and make, billboards to crash through, gates to smash and many other fun distractions that all in all add up to an excellent game, appealing to many, including those who would not usually consider the genre.
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on 25 January 2008
Just bought the game today, after playing the demo on and off for a few weeks things started to get tedious, constantly re running the same areas and jumps was starting to reduce the life of the game. The full game puts paid to that from the word go, a massive and hugely detailed map sprawls out before you, stacked with moe then a hundred smash boards a challenge or race on every street corner and 72 gorgeous cars for you to destory in an infinate number of ways.
The races are fun, and open plan allowing for any combination of route to get to the finish line.
Anything goes! smash your opponents off the track, outrun them with powerful nitrous boosts or simply take a shortcut and head them off.

Online play greatly enhances the burnout experience, seamlessly blending online and offline play. your chievements in online transfer to your single player experience. Take down players or race against them in one of the simplest internet gaming setups I've ever seen.

Its fair to say that the lack of apparant story line can at times leave you a little confused, especially since the range of options open to you is so large.

My advice, buy yourself a live account and take this game online, theres nothing better than racing against someone who reacts when you take them down, or does something unexpected in a race.

A huge complement of achievements will keep you interested.

Final verdict, Fun but flawed.

8/10
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