Burnout 3: Takedown Review
developer: Criterion Studios
|ESRB rating: T
release date: Sep 07, 04
|» All About Burnout 3: Takedown on ActionTrip|
Sorry folks, but I think the racing genre is generally bland. Woohoo! I get to drive cars in circles! Sure, some people might be fans of NASCAR and would love to emulate Jeff Gordon or something, but not me. And others might be big fans of ricers, souped-up Japanese econocars - you know the type - a front wheel drive car with an enormous spoiler on the back. I think I speak for a large number of people when I say that ricers and everyone that likes them can go rot in hell. I only like auto racing for one reason - watching the dumbasses that drive that fast in cheap fiberglass, over-decorated rollerskates die in massive fiery wrecks. If this kind of racing is your cup of tea, Burnout 3: Takedown is ready and willing to help you in that pursuit.
In a nutshell, the point of the game is to win races, but while you're racing on busy city streets or windy mountain roads, you get rewarded for driving like a shmuck. Driving into oncoming traffic at 130 miles per hour, nearly killing a family of four in a minivan gives you more of a boost, and that allows you to drive even faster. Plus, if you manage to kill your opponents (like the A-Team, no one ever really dies) by making them crash, or taking them out, you get the ability to hold even more boost so you can do it again. If you drive like an obnoxious prick, this is the game for you. (Yay me! - Six)
Also, there's the added feature that once you do crash in a race, you can put it into slow-motion and steer your flaming wreckage into racers behind you, and if you manage to hit them, you cause an aftertouch takedown, and you don't suffer the boost loss you would normally. The joy is boundless.
There's also an interesting mode of play in which you crash a car into some other cars and try to cause the most damage. There are bonuses to help you in this regard, and after a set number of crashes, you can make your car explode at the touch of a button. You can even replay them to watch a bus smash into an overturned oil tanker causing a lovely explosion that singes off kid's eyebrows two miles away.
The game looks sweet by any stretch of the imagination, but you get the feeling sometimes in slow-motion that there might not be beautiful graphics, but when you're blazing by at 150, you can't see a goddamn thing anyway. The game renders wonderful smoke and explosions, and looks nice for the most part, but when you drive that fast, even if the game doesn't really look good, it does a damn good job of covering it up.
The sound effects are great; the whoosh sound when you pass too close to a slower car, the sounds of cars being torn apart on the pavement, the whole thing sounds great. The music is another story. There's this total dumb fuck named Striker that plays emo-music. If you don't know about emo yet, think a bunch of talentless hacks whining into a microphone or trying to rock out with sing-songy tunes and lyrics. If you like emo, you should donate your ears to a deaf person because you're wasting them, and emo does not belong in a racing game. When I'm driving, I listen to death metal and I only ever want the announcer to come on and say that he's polishing the bone fragments from the "various animals I destroyed with my car", not to say some lame jackass comment about how it isn't so bad once you get over the taste. Not funny. The Xbox gets to have a self-loaded soundtrack and the PS2 will just have to turn it off I guess.
Multiplayer is pretty cool. The Xbox Live service gets the job done as well as Xbox Live can (meaning it's buggy as hell), and you can only play two player split-screen on one box. This is probably a blessing as when you can't see shit with a regular screen at times, when playing split-screen, you can't see shit or the dump truck right in front of it either. Going really fast is a big problem and the game shows why you should never try it in real life.
The way that cars come apart with a crash and move around with the physics engine can be called breathtaking. You're driving along and clip the back of a pick-up truck, you can expect to see both cars go flipping and twisting, yours likely to be falling apart as well: hood, doors, wheels, everything going completely wild, sparking across the pavement at 160. A terrifying sight to behold... You come this close to wreck and ruin every time you get behind the wheel, double so if you have acid flashbacks. (Yay me! - Six)
There are many, many unlockable cars and tracks; the cars are not licensed, but you get the jist of what they are going for with each. Apart from the specialty crash cars and the race cars, they are pretty easy to unlock. Race, get gold medals, takedowns, such the like, and any combination of that will unlock new cars. Pretty simple stuff.
The cars only focus on two attributes: top speed and weight. Weight determines how badly you can slap other cars around, but you're probably not going to be as maneuverable as the other cars on the track. This is either simple or vague; I'm not really sure which, but a neat system nonetheless. (Simple. More weight = less speed, more ass. Less weight = more speed, less ass. Got it? - Six)
The game really is fun all around. Apart from the radio it really stands out as the best racing game I've played all year (granted I've really only been playing F-Zero). Regardless of the fact that I'm not a racing fan, I found this to be a very, very good game, and absolutely hilarious when you think about the fact that it promotes driving like a dick and taking down your opponents with underhanded and brutal tactics.
I think that we should make beginning drivers and repeat drunk drivers play this game. Hell, everyone that operates a car should have to play. While it does reward you for driving like a shithead, the first time you smash head on into an 18 wheeler and the battered remains of both cars cause a pile-up as well as giving you the picture that it is unlikely anyone would survive being in your shoes in the real world, you never want to fuck around behind the wheel again. I used to drive like a crazy freak, but after I took out a family of four in a minivan and my own car was sent into the third story of a nearby office building, I learned my lesson.
A great racing game with wonderful crashes, lots to do and beautiful graphics and sound. Teaches teenage morons why they should not drive like a shmuck;
Whiny piss-ant music with an annoying son of a bitch talking every so often about shit you don't care about.
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