More than any other game in recent memory, aside from perhaps Assassins Creed, Burnout Paradise has polarised opinion. The new iteration of EA's venerable car crashing franchise is somewhat of a radical departure from the tried and trusted designs of Burnout games past. Criterion has shaken things up this time around people, and by all accounts, the results are a bit hit and miss.
Gone are the event selections from a menu, instead replaced by a sprawling metropolis with events available at the city's intersections. Gone also is the popular puzzle-solving Crash mode, replaced instead by a 'crash-n-tumble anytime' "Showtime" mode. Both design decisions have certainly drawn their share of criticism. On the upside, the online integration looks to be solid, with the game allowing players to join up with their mates online without leaving the game to do so. Visuals and Audio are top-notch.
So is Burnout Paradise a leap forwards into a truly next-gen racing experience or a step backwards? Personally, I like the open-world design, and think Criterion deserve credit for not resting on their laurels, but your mileage (no pun intended) may very.
Picked up your copy yet? Post your opinions in the comments below. If you're still making up your mind, below are some recent reviews of the game.