Burnout Paradise isn’t just one of my favorite racing gamers ever. It also housed one of my proudest gaming accomplishments of all time: acquiring the P12 Diamond by completing all five hundred online stunt, speed, and motorcycle challenges. It took a while, but the platinum studded car was definitely worth it. Now thanks to Burnout Paradise Remastered I have the opportunity to relive that journey once again on PS4. Also, I bribed my way to handle this review code from the PurePlayStation staff with cute pictures of LOLCats. So with my Carbon Hawker nonsensically soaking up rays on Big Surf Island, let me detail what this remaster does and if it was worth the port to next-gen systems.
In terms of holding up to today’s standards, Burnout Paradise Remastered passes with flying colors. You still can’t get any better arcade racing in the industry. Driving movements, turning, drifting, launching off ramps, barrel rolling, and pure racing are still perfectly encapsulated. Adrenaline will pump like crazy while you’re traveling at good ol’ breakneck speeds with your pedal to the metal. I wholeheartedly believe if the word ‘Remastered’ wasn’t in the title, someone could easily mistake this for a current game. Albeit with good, not great graphics by the standards we currently hold. Cars, roads, grass, and trees are definitely sharper with a more defined color tone. Especially so with the crashes. I feel the bits and pieces that fly off when you demolish yourself are much more detailed and believable. However, don’t expect eye-popping visuals as upscaling resolution and increasing frames per second can only do so much for a 10-year old game.
In regards to warranting a remaster, you’ll only find nostalgia and enjoyment of a great racing game here. There’s nothing new in terms of gameplay nor refined or added content. I would have loved some small fixes, changes and improvements. Of course I would have loved new areas, but that’s asking a bit much on a game made in 2008. Still, it’s hard to believe there would be difficulty doing something other than improving graphics. For example there could have been some exclusive skins, ability to reveal collectables, daily challenges, and new songs just to name some possible additions. Although I still do have a guilty pleasure of listening to Avril Lavigne’s “Girlfriend” while playing Burnout Paradise.
DJ Atomika once again welcomes players to Paradise City upon boot up. His confident, dry wit is enjoyable as always and I’m glad I’ll be listening to him again on Crash FM. More importantly, the structure or goals of Burnout Paradise Remastered remain the same. Your main objective is to complete events at intersections and reach that first place finish every time. You’ll still be asked to survive marked man challenges, reach a certain point while being hounded by other drivers, participate in races from point A to point B across the vast city, achieve high scores in stunt runs by performing tricks and feats, complete burning routes which are time trials specific to certain cars, and destroy other cars in road rage to level up your license. Just like before each upgrade will require a certain amount of wins and pictures snapped from your camera. The side content is here as well. You’ll still be able to race down each road for the best time or smash your car into everything to create a frenzy for the most points. Last, but certainly not least, are the fifty super jumps, one hundred and twenty billboards, and four hundred gates to find.
Most of the DLC packages return as well. I say most because I haven’t been able to play Cops and Robbers because it was an online mode and as most people know I can never work a time to play with other people who have review copies. The 30+ cop cars from that DLC are available for offline use though. Other than that expect to play around with itty bitty Toy Cars, Legendary Cars (Delorean, KITT, Ecto-1, and General Lee), Boost Special Cars, Motorcycles, and of course, the granddaddy of Paradise DLC, Big Surf Island. The island is as creative and amusing as I remember and regardless of how small improved, the remaster does the place justice. All of these are available from the very start so expect to get some of the fastest and strongest cars right out of the bat. Might throw the difficulty of Burnout Paradise Remastered for a loop since the Toy Cars are still as strong as frickin’ tanks.
As I mentioned I have yet to connect with another human soul online, but I was able to see that worldwide ranked races, unranked events, stunt and speed challenges, and custom-made races will return. There are few words to describe my excitement at completing these all once again with my fellow racers. Unless there will be newbies in which case, be aware there are people who are ten years your senior. You’ll need to memorize streets, strategies, and the art of the takedown to be competitive. Don’t worry too much however, plenty of the unranked stuff is still fun. Even driving around the world is just as I remember it.
Burnout Paradise Remastered PS4 Review
Overall - Fantastic - 8.0/10
Burnout Paradise Remastered brings me back to the happy times of teenage gaming. Being able to play one of the greatest racing titles again, on the PlayStation 4, is a delight. I realize being a major fan of the original release skewers my perception slightly, but I am aware my nostalgia plays a role in my enjoyment. As I mentioned, the only positive things here in terms of a remaster are slightly improved textures and playing a beloved racing game again that holds up amazingly well. There’s no new content of any kind so this experience falls into the slight upgrade category. Here’s hoping Alex Ward and Fiona Sperry over at Three Fields Entertainment can come up with something brand new in the true Burnout spirit.
Review Disclaimer: This review was carried out using a digital copy of the game provided by the publisher. For more information, please read our Review Policy.
Reviewed using base PS4.