Burnout 3 and Burnout Revenge were probably the first ever car games that I actually enjoyed, meaning that Criterion’s Burnout franchise will always have my interest and more importantly, a place in my heart. When Burnout Paradise was first released in 2008, I stepped away from it, not liking the idea of an open world gameplay (because I don’t do multiplayer), and despising the lack of two player split-screen racing.

Instead, Blur was the racing game to capture and hold my attention, and to this day remains one of the few games which I haven’t sold off to a second hand store.

Time moved on, and having forgotten all about why I never picked up Burnout Paradise the first time around, I ended up recently purchasing it for a laughably low price just to bump up the value of my online order for printer cartridges so as to skip out on delivery fee.

A day later, it arrived via the courier and I excitedly opened it up, installed it and hit play, only to be instantly disappointed with the open world gameplay and then very annoyed by the lack of split-screen racing, because my plan had been to race against Chantelle (seeing as racing games are the only thing she’ll play with me on the XBOX 360).

However, those two aspects aside, Burnout Paradise is still Burnout at heart, meaning ridiculously fast racing, huge drifts, aggressive taking out of opponents, responsive handling, and of course the massively detailed and epic car smashes that put the franchise on the map in the first place!

The graphics are fantastic, the selection of cars (non-branded of course) awesome, the addition of motorbikes epic, the soundtrack sublime – in other words, a thoroughly enjoyable and rewarding arcade racing game, which will keep you occupied for literally hours on end.

(And yes, apparently the multiplayer on this thing is pretty wicked too!)

Available for dirt cheap, and if you haven’t picked it up before, well worth doing so now if you enjoy your non-realistic, balls to the wall arcade racing games.

Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burnout_Paradise