Metascore
87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 55 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 55
  2. Negative: 0 out of 55
  1. 90
    Whether you're careening through desolate urban alleys or rocketing across a rickety railroad trestle, the game looks nearly flawless and runs at a buttery-smooth clip.
  2. An excellent game and if you have the capability to play online and the time to learn the city inside out, it may well prove to be a title that keeps you enthralled for many months to come.
  3. Criterion has made a major mistake removing crash junctions and replacing them with the rather poor red-headed stepchild showtime. But the racing events and seamless online integration mean that Burnout Paradise remains a game that I can still highly recommend.
  4. Controls are perfectly forgiving. I love the arcade feel of the title that is extremely well recreated through either of the 360 or PS3 controllers.
  5. Overall, Burnout Paradise is smashing title (sorry, again). With a lengthy game life and its near on perfect gameplay, it will take you days or even weeks to find all of the hidden routes, billboards and fences located around the city, as well as building up your licence, collecting cars and winning all the events.
  6. Other than the lack of waypoints and some AI-balancing complaints, there's not much to find fault with when it comes to Burnout Paradise.
  7. Burnout Paradise is the first great game of 2008. It has all the makings of one of the best the Burnout series has seen, and if improved upon for next year could be the best Burnout yet.
  8. In many ways, yes this is a definitive improvement over previous Burnout games, the online mode is fantastic and the open world environment has many perks that reward players who make the effort to learn its small nuances. The game is let down by the lack of a proper Crash modem, the irritating sat nav and the lack of a retry button.
  9. Just like that, Criterion has really changed the way you’ll look at the structure of racing games. While other racers have tried open worlds (Test Drive Unlimited, for instance), there have been none that have offered the same sense of freedom, ease of use, and level of polish. Criterion has finally taken off your training wheels, and after playing Burnout Paradise, there's little doubt that you'll never want them back on.
  10. Paradise loops its action into an endless rush, the possibilities, for arcade racing and battle enthusiasts alike, increasing with every hour. It’s hard not to see it as the birth of a new era, but in truth it might be the last Burnout you ever need. [Feb 2008, p.86]
  11. As someone who's closely followed Criterion's racing series for the last seven years, it warms my heart to see it evolve into something as innovative, satisfying, and polished as Paradise. [Feb 2008, p.74]
  12. In truth, I would have preferred to select events on the fly, change vehicles on a whim, and restart failed events when I choose, but nor is it a deal-breaker that these features have been omitted. Once you (reluctantly) adapt to the demands of the game, a massive amount of fun awaits.
  13. Burnout Paradise is everything we could desire, kudos to Criterion. The design and game flow are astounding, giving a great sense of freedom. A technically remarkable game and one of the most fun racing games this generation.
  14. 80
    The game looks and sounds fantastic, but plays even better. There’s so much to do in Paradise City that you’ll spend hours exploring every nook. Even after the single player game dulls down, the multiplayer should provide even more fun.
  15. What's here is nothing short of amazing, but I can't help but wonder what could have been. [Feb 2008, p.94]
  16. By doing what they do best Criterion has made Burnout Paradise one of the most accessible and wildly entertaining arcade racers ever created.
  17. These minor hitches notwithstanding, Burnout Paradise is an excellent, solid ride for both solo and online gamers, with superb control, high production values, complete freedom, and so much obsessive, secret-hunting, gotta-catch-‘em-all lasting gameplay incentive that it’s almost ridiculous.
  18. Paradise has its frustrations, such as the lack of a Crash mode (Showtime just can't compete) and the inability to instantly restart an event you recently lost.
  19. The visceral thrill and sheer, white-knuckle intensity of Burnout remains untouched. The game looks, sounds and controls as well as it ever has. Online play is excellent, if currently somewhat limited. There are only two real downers (the lack of event restarts and Crash mode) and we’re big fans of the open city design, though it does have a learning curve.
  20. 100
    Give it a chance and you may find yourself having the most fun you've ever had in a virtual car. [Feb 2008, p.70]
  21. While Burnout Paradise is certainly an addictive game that offers a ton of value for anyone to enjoy, it definitely won’t please everyone that gives it a shot.
  22. Burnout Paradise is the best Burnout game yet. The only issues are minor ones, and the online play delivers better than I ever expected. It's a must-own for racing fans, and at least a must-play for everyone else.
  23. Provides some of the fastest, most thrilling and spectacular racing you'll find. It may not be as accessible as before but it now has more substance, more content and more depth. [Feb 2008, p.70]
  24. The question of how much an open city suits Burnout is soon replaced by how well Criterion makes the game work within one. And, thanks to a number of odd decisions on how players progress, the answer is: sloppily. [Feb 2008, p.114]
  25. 100
    The City is enormous and beautiful, the cars are amazingly detailed, and the control is divine.
  26. Burnout Paradise includes all the fast-driving, hard-wrecking action you'd expect from a Burnout game, but with a fantastic new open-world design that gives it its own stand-alone flavor.
  27. 90
    It's not a flawless package; some of Paradise City's terrain could be easier to navigate with do-it-yourself waypoints, and the inability to restart a race is irritating. However, there's so much to do and wreck that you'll invest tens of hours in single-player before you even tap the d-pad to jump into the online experience. Paradise is undoubtedly the first must-own racing game of 2008.
  28. 90
    Perhaps the most impressive aspect of Burnout Paradise is that the barrier between online and offline play is almost invisible. You can be playing along by yourself, and then with a click of a button, you can invite another friend to join you in an event. It's one of the most organic transitions I've seen yet, and Criteron is definitely a pioneer in how online gaming will continue to evolve.
  29. The way the vehicles crumple, windshields shatter, and pieces of debris go flying in every direction is second to none, making you appreciate each and every impact. The only quibbles we have with the presentation are the absence of a driver, and one of the most annoying announcers ever.
  30. An absolute blast to play, Paradise is the benchmark for sandbox racing titles on the PS3. The crashes are spectacular, the challenge is definitely there, and the game abounds with eye candy and easter eggs. This is, arguably, the best Burnout to date and certainly one of the best racing games on the PS3.
  31. A fine racing game indeed. I only wish there were more Road Rage modes and other varieties spread along the map as I would say a good 65% of the modes are races. While this is fine and certainly fun, I don’t buy Burnout titles to race, I buy them for the carnage.
  32. The team at Criterion took a big chance and it’s paid off very well. The game revamps the stock formula in major ways without losing most of the high-speed racing flavor that you hope to see from something with Burnout in the title.
  33. 88
    Criterion has once again delivered a racing experience that can best be described as controlled chaos, one where even crashing is immensely rewarding. If you're even a remote fan of racing games, be sure to check this out.
  34. 80
    There’s definitely enough gameplay gold here to make it worth a look for fans of the series, but it’s a real pity that Criterion made the decision to make the game less user-friendly than it could have been.
  35. 90
    Burnout Paradise has taken several huge gambles in altering the already-winning formula of the franchise. For the most part, Criterion and EA have a winner on their hands.
  36. With its new and open structure, it can be a shock at the beginning. But the gameplay is as addictive as ever and with its vertiginous speed, excellent framerate and, mainly, the new online multiplayer, the new Burnout is still a great game for any arcade racing fan. [Jan 2008]
  37. The vehicles look fantastic, the crashes painful. All round the graphics are stupendous and never falter.
  38. 80
    Burnout Paradise is a superb title that offers a glimpse into how the racing genre is evolving. While not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, what it offers is sublime entertainment.
  39. A truly superb racer; fast, vast and there's plenty to do under that super-slick surface. [Jan 2008, p.118]
  40. 85
    Burnout Paradise isn't a typical update, but the decision to move the game to an open world can generally be considered a good one. There are still a few annoying flaws (the lack of a try again option, the less enjoyable crash options) but the great presentation, incredible online implementation and wealth of things to do in Paradise City will please even the most cynical Burnout fan.
  41. Having a big wide open playing area is a nice addition in many ways but unfortunately in the current form the pros don’t outweight the cons. Having to find your own route doesn’t quite fit the series and the dreadful car navigation system doesn’t help either. Also having to drive back to the starting line to restart a race is a big flaw and the decission to replace Crash with boring Showtime is bizarre. Still the basis of the game is so strong that even with obvious flaws the game is still quite fun especially in multiplayer. [Jan 2008]
  42. Instead of a series of self-contained challenges, Paradise offers up an open world where players are free to explore their inner vehicular homocidal maniac to their hearts' content. [Mar 2008, p.56]
  43. 74
    A polished, high-quality product, but its repetitiveness makes it less than compelling. Criterion seems to have lost sight of the high-adrenaline dynamic that makes Burnout exciting. [Issue#162, p.74]
  44. 90
    This sort of incidental fun has historically been the preserve of childhood matchbox cars and track, and it's therefore great to find a videogame that encourages such imaginative play. For me this more than compensates for any shortfall in 'directed' experience, and I'd suggest is an opportunity for the gamer to play a greater part in creating their own fun.
  45. Scarily deep. It demands you play it: there's so much to find it's incredible. [Jan 2008, p.88]
  46. The group co-op challenges alone are some of the most fun we've had playing online in years. [Feb 2008, p.76]
  47. Flawed in structure, but magnificent to play, Paradise is within touching distance of vital. [Feb 2008, p.62]
  48. Burnout Paradise is the epitome of the entire franchise. It offers so much to the gamer, all without cutting corners or making any sacrifices in gameplay. It's online component can be added up to nearly half of the game's value, and the amount of things you can do in the single-player seems almost never-ending.
  49. Paradise is without a single doubt the best game in the Burnout franchise. Criterion cleverly grasped the best elements and tailored them to the free roaming style. Production values are superb, and fans of the series shouldn't miss this fabulous chapter.
  50. Paradise isn’t my favorite Burnout game, but it is well worth playing; the only major aggravation is being forced to listen to Guns N’ Roses’ intolerable song “Paradise City” every time you start playing. Couldn’t they have named it Burnout Suffragette?
  51. Paradise is a wonderful game: it's inventive, confident and brilliantly produced and just shows what's possible when developers make the PS3 the lead console. If you're even remotely into racing games, this is one you can't afford to miss out on.
  52. If you're an obsessive fan of the series who's played all the other Burnout games to death and you need a new challenge, then you'll probably still enjoy this one (although you're also likely to be very disappointed).
  53. The fact that there's no custom soundtrack support is odd, considering every PS3 comes with a hard drive.
  54. Paradise would have received an even higher score had they included legacy Burnout crash-mode events for those devoted to them.
  55. 85
    Fans of the series will no doubt hate the lack of traditional modes from previous games and consider it a crime that Crash Mode was omitted altogether. However, everything about Paradise screams quality and in turn delivers one of the best driving games released in quite a while.
User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 390 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 122
  2. Negative: 26 out of 122
  1. Aug 22, 2013
    8
    Burnout Paradise is a fun but flawed sandbox racer. The game focuses on the gameplay and does not have any story to speak of, because of this the graphics and gameplay are fantastic. The graphics look very sharp and realistic. When you are speeding past the scenery at a high speed, it looks beautiful. However, the gameplay is the real star of the show. Burnout Paradise allows you to explore it's sandbox world looking for events. These events include races, road rages, stunt runs, and marked man. Each of these are fun if you spread them out amongst each other. However, if you do keep doing the same type of event over and over again, the game becomes very repetitive quickly. Even if you spread them out, the game will eventually become repetitive. For example, you will realize that in the races, you are doing the same routes again and again with a few different turns. The repetitiveness of the game comes from the fact that while the world is beautiful, it is tiny. It doesn't take long to see everything the game has to offer. The only other problem with the game is it's difficulty curve. The game is easy for the most part, but there are random difficulty spikes throughout the game. However, it is easy to adjust to the spikes due to the car selection. If the current car that you have does not work well for the event you are currently trying to complete, then change to a newer car. This does mean that the car selection is unbalanced but this actually works in the games favor. Overall, Burnout Paradise is fun game that anyone can enjoy, it just has a few flaws. Full Review »
  2. May 22, 2013
    9
    *The* best racing game you can get a hold of in PC, granted that neither Forza or Gran Turismo ever hitting Steam, amazingly well done roads,shortcuts, enjoyable cars the feel that high speed gives, crashing mechanics... the only downside for me was not so-challenging AI but that can be easily fixed with Multiplayer, although i myself could never experience it yet. Full Review »
  3. Apr 9, 2013
    9
    This is classic Burnout with way better graphics. It's just fun. I could play this all day with my friends, my relatives or whoever. If you don't have it, it's fun as hell. Full Review »