Burnout 2: Point of Impact
The Xbox hasn’t been blessed with decent arcade racers. Sure at the launch you had Project Gotham Racing but after that there has been a void that no racing title could truly fill.
Many have tried but all of them failed. Burnout 2 is the next one on the list that has high potential. How can a PS2 port aim for the crown of arcade racers on the Xbox you ask? Well by adding Live support, exclusive features and boosting the graphics alot.
Let’s start with the graphics. The PS2 graphics were pretty good for that console but the Xbox ones are great. Even though everything passes at a high rate, I haven’t noticed a single slowdown throughout the whole game. Car models are detailed and the surroundings are, even though you don’t have much time to be amazed by them, pretty sweet. Damage is extremely well done and it’s just a pleasure to see all the bits and pieces fly around when you smash into another car. It’s that much fun they made a separate game mode out of it.
This brings us to the gameplay aspect. The “career” mode is a race-and-unlock-stuff kind of mode. You start with some cars and when you win you unlock other cars, tracks and modes. Modes are just racing with other cars, face-off against a better car to win it and cop chases.
In the races and the face-offs your goal is to finish first. When you race and do dangerous things like a near miss, a jump or a slalom your booster meter gets filled. Once that meter is full, you can use the booster. The booster is some kind of nitro that’s installed on your car and that gives you a boost (duh?). The visual effect of a booster looks a lot like going into hyperspace and it’s not that easy to avoid crashed when boosted. If you succeed in doing a full boost (empty the whole meter) and you do enough crazy things while doing it, your booster will be filled again and you get a +1, then +2 and up to +3. This way it’s possible for you to make incredible times and not to mention very cool crashes.
A cop chase is basically the same thing; except you are a cop and you need to bash the other car until it’s broken.
The crash mode, my favorite, is dangerous parts of the tracks you race on combined with a fast car and a full booster. The goal is to make as much damage as you can by trying to hit the right car the right time. A small hint: knocking over a bus can do the trick. It’s really cool to see the crashes in slow-motion while the damage meter is counting.
The sound in the game is also top notch. Every car has a nice purring or roaring engine and they all have nice crashing sounds. Another thing you don’t see much in games is an actually good soundtrack that doesn’t bore you to death. Don’t expect any squealing or screaming pedestrians running for their lives because there aren’t any.
On the Multiplayer front there is not much news. You can race all the game modes in split screen and you can upload your high scores to the Xbox live scoreboard. Yep that’s it for Live support but it’s better than nothing.
The other Xbox exclusive thing are 21 unique car skins that no other version has or will ever have.
Conclusion: This game has all it’s supposed to have and can be taken as one of the better Xbox titles around. Project Gotham 2 will have a hard time beating this