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January 25, 2004
Crash n' Burn - Review
Release Date Distributor Developer Players Rating Difficulty
6/12/2004EidosClimax1, 16 GMedium
Save Size Sound Format Vibration 60Hz Mode 50Hz Border Widescreen

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Nice flame paint job.
Racing games are a dime a dozen on PS2 and it takes something special to stand out. In recent times Burnout 3 has taken the honors as the biggest and best racers. There's no denying the exhilaration and sense of speed when playing this stunning title. In late 2004 two other titles were released offering something a little different. Red Ant and Bugbear's FlatOut offered fully destructible environments while this game, Crash n Burn, offers a racing style which has two objectives. Number one, cross the line first, number two, destroy the opposition in the process.

I'll begin the review of Crash N Burn with the list of game modes which is impressive. These modes include Race, Team Race, Kamikaze, Team Kamikaze, Running Man, Last Man Standing, Last Man Standing Team, Assassination, and Bomb Tag. Most of these are fairly self-explainatory, needless to say you'll spend hours in each mode. The races are as frantic as hell with 16 cars on track at any one time, each trying to destroy the others as well as cross the line first. The sense of speed is pretty good, however it's the damage to the cars that impresses the most.

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Graphics can be a little average.
Rather then just a single type of car gamers have the opportunity to drive four types including a Pickup Truck, Muscle Car, Sports Coupe or Hot Hatch. Each handles a little differently. The pickup truck, for instance, is a bit sluggish, but can certainly take a battering while the Sports Coupe is very quick but doesn't survive well in collisions. A realistic damage model sees the cars get damaged in all manner of ways from shredded tyres, crumpled and torn bodywork, smashed windows and exposed engine blocks. Any parts that fall off remain on the track as obstacles for the remainder of the race. As with any good racing game these days being able to mod your car plays a crucial role. In Crash N Burn it's possible to customise and personalise your car with everything from paint schemes, to rims & spoilers, to nitrous.

This game takes place in four locations Miami, San Francisco, L.A. and New York. Each of these is fairly similar however the track design really deserves mention as the developers have set the game up to provide some spectacular collision points. One of the first tracks you will encounter is a figure 8 styled tracks. It's an adrenaline rush every time you race through the main intersection not knowing if you are going to be T-boned in the process. One neat little touch is that it is possible to save the replays to show off to your mates.

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Impressive flame effects.
One of the greatest assets to Crash N Burn is support for up to 16-players online through Gamespy. Unfortunately, being in Australia means that there is rarely enough gamers available to compete against, or there is a bit too much lag from Australia to gamers in America or Europe. Still the games I did play were enjoyable enough and certainly make a worthy addition to the game.

There's two ways to look at the graphics in Crash N Burn. On the one hand the car and track detail is well below the best on the Playstation 2. The trade off to that is that the game holds a very solid frame rate with 16 cars on track at once and there is a tonne of effects on the track such as fires, car bodies and other obstacles. The fire effects in particular are quite impressive.

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Dude, your going the wrong way!
When it comes to audio you'd better like rock music, this game is full of it. While I don't mind it I really would have liked a little more variety in this game. The sound effects are better with some decent explosions and an announcerís voice which lets you know what's happening around the track.

This certainly isn't the best racing game on PS2, Burnout 3 still holds that title. Having said that Crash n Burn is a very enjoyable game. Perhaps with a little more structure and better graphics this game could have scored higher. Don't get me wrong though, this is still worth adding to your collection especially at the lower price of only $AU69.95.

Review By: Dave Warner

GRAPHICSGraphically this game is passable. Nice effects, but average cars.
SOUNDYou'd better like rock music! The effects, however, are pretty good.
GAMEPLAYQuite a fun title when it comes down to it. It will keep you hooked.
VALUEPlenty of game modes, and online racing for $69.95. Good value.
OVERALLCrash N Burn doesn't do anything extraordinary, but it doesn't do anything wrong either. Probably a game you could do without, but you won't regret purchasing. One for the racing fans.

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