FlatOut: Ultimate Carnage
FlatOut: Ultimate Carnage is nothing more than a HD-version of a game we could already play on Xbox, PS2 and PC some time ago. For the fans of the series with an Xbox360 under their HDTV this is easily recommendable For those that haven’t tried the series or isn’t sure whether they should take out their wallet for an update, we hope this review will help a little.
As said you get FlatOut 2 presented in a beautiful, new, shiny and tight metal jacket. Qua presentation this is of course the most beautiful episode and the environment, menus and cars will be put on your screen more than adequately and without framedrops that might spoil the fun. Inside this sweetness you’ll find the arcady races back, filled with chaos, destruction and fun with the physics engine. Those that love Burnout will quickly feel at home in the different surroundings that vary from an American outback to a vivid city.
The idea is of course that you win races, and that is mostly done by pushing the competition from the road, or have them parked against junk that’s laying everywhere or a well-placed tree. The twelve opponents make for a decent challenge and you’ll notice it’s more about fighting the other cars than finding the ideal line or perfectly accelerating when coming out of a curve.
As important as your driving skills is the boost of your car. This doesn’t only charge by ramming other cars but especially by smashing the tons of objects like barns, walls, and even planes (you’ve never seen this amount of destructable stuff in another game). Ideal system to force you to exploit the most noticeable aspect of this game and made even more fun due to the fact that the wrecks remain present during the entire race. Crashing for fun, but also some downpoints surface here. You’ll often remain blocked at certain points just a little bit too long making you loose too much ground and eventhough the steering has improved it can still use some polishing.
Contrary to more slick racing games your “colleagues” won’t hesitate to reduce your car to a wreck either. The result is an A.I. that feels good, ragdoll pilots that show a nice ballet when another smash of death takes place and a game that offers instant fun without you having to worry about the settings of your spoiler or left front suspension. If you manage to get a couple of friends to join in, you can multiply this by three and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what to expect.
Once you’ve got a couple of those friends at home, then don’t forget to check out the mini-games. The ragdoll ones are a bit too light to keep you occupied for hours, but it does remain fun to catapult your driver to a bullseye or just into the air. Another addition are the arenas where you have to keep driving until everyone else is dead. No lack of variation!
FlatOut: Ultimate Carnage is simply a very fun game for those that like brainless racing, big crashes, chaos all around on the road and tons of collisions, fun minigames and more than enough variation to keep you and your friends occupied for a while. It won’t become a classic but sometimes you don’t need more for a couple of hours of top notch entertainment. Do take into account that the changes compared to FlatOut 2 (except for the graphics update of course) will only be able to convince the biggest fans to buy this version if they’ve already got the original in their cupboard.