Total Reviews: 3
Average Overall Score Given: 8.00000 / 10
Total Forum Posts: 2

Burnout 3: Takedown

Overall: Small doses, that?s how I have to play this game. Very fun, very frustrating. I loved the previous release, Burnout two Point of Impact, and this one improves on many of the factors that made that game great. Unfortunately, it added a whole bunch of annoyances that just !&%$@#* me off. The clock continues to count after you crash and have to watch in slow motion. Meanwhile, all the other cars that you were ahead of pass and the time keeper reads your 9 seconds behind. How the heck does that work? The most I have been able to get ahead of a CPU car is 4 seconds. Sun in your eyes? The randomly placed van, truck, car that appears out of nowhere and sometimes steers into you? Small complaints like this make me want to destroy the controller (maybe that was the point!  ). Ok, enough of the whinnying and on to the good stuff.

Gameplay: The game play is obviously fast and frantic. The cars handle just ok; I hope cars I unlock later will be more responsive. Great game types, love road rage! Not really a fan of the crash mode; its more luck than it is skill. I played the game on line a few time and was not impressed very much. EA has some real bugs to work out as far as servers go. I know they want to control this aspect (so they can later charge for downloadable content exclusively) but they should have tested the format more thoroughly first. All thing considered, I like the game play.

Graphics: No complaints here. Everything looks better that the first two installments. Nice textures on the cars and surroundings. The crash graphics are probably the envy of all other racing games. I especially like the Asian race circuits.

Audio: Satisfying everyone in this department is hard. I think the overwhelming majority of this games song tracks are total crap. Most are just the flavor of the month bands that don?t fit this type of game. Thankful, of course, you can play your own soundtrack. Car and track noises are acceptable. The cars could use a little distinction between them although. I have to know, what the heck were they thinking with the DJ? That was the very first thing to go!

Suggestions: For God?s sake, get rid of the Sun in your eyes, uneven time counter and lame DJ. Although I understand that a big part of this game is dodging traffic, I wouldn?t mind seeing it removed as well, or at least an option to turn traffic off. Work on the Live aspect so players don?t get dropped so often. Look forward to Burnout 4.

Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge

Overall: The first time I skimmed the ocean and saw water drops on the canapé, I was impressed; a couple barrel rolls later, I was hooked. There has only been a hand full of games that I truly considered straight-out fun, Burnout 2 for instance. This gem kept me interested and thrilled almost the whole way thru. Dangerous Dames and Deadly Dogfights, what?s not to like!

Gameplay: Game-play is where this game shines. The pick-up and play ease-ability frees your from the tedious learning curve of most flight simulators. And a sim this game is not; it?s purely an arcade shoot-fest. Piloting a variety of concept planes with their own strengths and weaknesses adds a bit of strategy to the mix. Speed and maneuverability of a Bulldog, the durability of the Brigand or the all purpose Devastator; these choices adds spice to how you can play the various missions.

The single player campaign made me a fan; the on-line multiplayer made me an addict. I had the game for a long time before I registered to Xbox Live and it was this game in-particular convinced me to shell-out the extra cash for broadband. Once I was on line and learned the how to really dogfight however, let?s just say I hardly leave the unfriendly skies now. The downloadable content truly brought value-added to this purchase. My favorite new plane and map is the Fury and Plateau. If you want to hunt an Ace, you?ll find Azael6 there. (I?m not, bragging, I?m just an average four-dot plus!)

Graphics: The graphics are pure eye-candy. Like I stated above, the water effects are cool (and there be wale?s too in wave?s matie!). The planes have a decent amount of detail and the environments are interesting; personal favorite is Sea Haven. Can?t say I care for the caverns that much but it was challenging if nothing ells. Awesome explosions and weather effects really sweeten the visuals. From the tropical islands to high plain desserts; underground cities to skyscrapers in Chicago, there?s plenty to explore.

Audio: If you have a surround sound system, you might find yourself checking the corners of the room for fighters coming up on your 6. The machine gun and plane engine effects were acceptable. I like the sound a plane makes as it zips by you. If you listen closely, you can hear the waves cresting around Sea Haven. The voice acting was enjoyable; Nathan reminds me of Ash from the Evil Dead movies. ?Take these broken wings, and learn to fly again.? If you know where that line comes from, like me, you probably won?t admit it! The other characters sound appropriate for the time setting; especially Betty?s 1930?s circa shrill. ?Hope ya don?t mind if I leave my socks on?? Yea, it?s cheesy; but I wouldn?t want it any other way.

Suggestions: Improvements? Make the single player campaign longer of course. Some new special moves would be welcome, like the ability to flip back and get behind the plane chasing you. One aspect I really dislike is the stall feature when you are pointing straight up and shooting and the spin-out (dead in the air) effect when someone flies through you on multiplayer. I don?t know how many times I have either been shot down while spinning or hit the ground/building and destroyed myself because of these minor irritations! New planes of course! Some larger bombers would be cool, like an old B-17 Flying Fortress that allows multiple players to man the AA guns inside. Keep up the good work!

Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Project Gotham Racing 2

Overall: The catch line for this game is supposed to be ?Racing with Style?; a more accurate statement (for me) would be ?This is racing frustration?. While visually stunning, this game is more work than it fun. I think the only way I could enjoy this game was to totally ignore the Kudos system and use the cheats (when they come out) to unlock all the cars. I plan on trading-in both PGR 1 and 2 on Burnout 3 when it comes out.

Gameplay: The Kudos Challenge was not even mildly enjoyable because of the over emphasis on realism; most of the cars handled badly while the AI cars seemed to glide the road without making a mistake. I found myself trying to make it to the first corner (every track has that first narrow corner to overcome) and cause a pile-up with the other cars in hopes of coming out of it in first place. If you don?t secure the first place position right off, then you might as well forget the rest of the race or start-over. Even is Arcade mode, it was a chore trying to navigate through the very boxy streets with cars that seemed too big for the road, especially when there was a group of racers. The game encourages power sliding but the streets are so narrow that I never got a real good slide without hitting the guard rails. I know it take practice to get used to it but I really didn?t want to put that much time into it.(Lazy)I also hate how you come to a dead stop when you hit a guard-rail, even slightly. My last complaint is starting off in sixth or last place in each race. Although you can easily pass most of the other racers, the lead car has a tremendous lead on you right out of the gate. I wish all racers started off in an even line and the car with best acceleration specs took the lead; that I could deal with. Or, as you win your way through the lower skill levels, you also advance in starting position. I know this sounds like whining but I was just disappointed in the game-play.

Graphics: No complaints here, the game is visually stunning; awesome detail in the cars, cities and overall environment.

Audio: Most of the stock soundtracks were garbage. The fact that you can play your own mixes saves this department. The car engines and road ambiance, however, was right-on target.

Suggestions: Lose the Kudos system. Make the streets wider. Tone down the steep AI factor. I don?t blame the developer for the awful soundtrack; it?s difficult to please everyone?s musical taste. Consider the fun factor that other popular racing games exploit; Need For Speed and Burnout?s arcade like feel and the space friendly feel of other racers.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10

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