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Burnout Legends PSP

Published by EA Games
Developed by Criterion Games
Release Date: Out Now
Price: £34.99

Burnout Legends, an introduction.

One of the most successful console racing games over the last few years has been the Burnout games. We've been fortunate enough to review all of the Burnout games to date and all have earned an impressive 9/10. With the PSP game catalogue being rather barebones at the moment, it's a sight for sore eyes to see a title such as Burnout Legends arrive on the system. Can it live up to the standards of the previous Burnout games though?

What's the game about?

Burnout Legends isn't just a port of one of the earlier games in the series. In fact it feels like the best bits have been taken from the first 3 games and rolled into something new. The game offers a World Tour mode, Single Event mode and a Multiplayer mode. Most gamers will spend their time with the game in the World Tour mode and the mode is split into 5 classes. You'll begin with the Compact class before moving on to the Muscle, Coupe, Sport and Super classes. The idea of the World Tour mode is to win medals in the events in a given location to unlock new locations and events. Should you earn a gold medal in each location, you'll gain access to the Legend Grand Prix. Earning gold in each of the Legend GP events will earn you a Legend vehicle.

What's good about the game?

There are normal race games and there are the races in the Burnout series. Winning races in the Burnout games is not just what it's all about. You're rewarded for taking out your enemies but you'll have to be careful as those enemies you've taken out will want their revenge. You'll be racing against oncoming traffic and when you couple this with AI opponents who want to smack you out of the race, you have a racing experience that's intense and very engrossing. Some of the race types you'll encounter in the game are Race, Time Attack, Road Rage, Pursuit and Crash. Road Rage sees you having to take down as many of your rivals as you can whilst Pursuit puts you in a Police car with the goal being that you have to take down the criminals before they get away. The one mode that feels quite different from the rest is Crash. In Crash mode the goal is to perform an elaborate crash with the aim of hitting as many vehicles as possible. The crashbreaker, aftertouch and impact time features have once again been included and will help you to make those crashes even more stylish. Having played the first 3 Burnout games I can say without hesitation that Burnout Legends manages to capture everything that was great about them. The sensation of speed is amazing and the crashes are just as impressive as they've ever been. The multiplayer side of the game supports up to 6 players and game sharing is supported.

What's not so good about the game?

Burnout Legends is excellent in most respects but in certain races you do get a very small pause. This pause is only for a split-second but nevertheless it is noticeable. It doesn't always happen though and even when it does it doesn't disadvantage you at all. Like most other PSP games the wireless multiplayer races only support ad hoc setups so you won't be able to race against players over the Internet.

How does it look?

Criterion has done a great job with the graphics in Burnout Legends. The visuals are on a par with the PlayStation 2 version of Burnout and look very impressive. The sensation of speed in Burnout Legends is amazing and it has to be one of the most impressive racers ever seen on a handheld system. For most of the time the frame rate is absolutely superb although as we mentioned above, we have experienced the odd minute pause. The car models look very good as do the crashes which look just as impressive as the ones found in Burnout 3 on the PlayStation 2.

How deaf gamer friendly is the game?

Deaf gamers will have no problems with Burnout Legends. All of the information in the game is presented visually. The game manual may consist of only 16 pages but it tells you all you could possibly wish to know about the game. All of the various game concepts and modes in the game are all explained and listed in the contents page making it very easy to find out about something you may be unsure of, if you're new to the series.

Final thoughts.

In its formative stages the PSP is rapidly becoming a handheld console for fans of racing games. The console already has a handful or racing titles of which a couple, Ridge Racer and Wipeout Pure are impressive. However, Burnout Legends surpasses both of these titles and at the moment is the best racing game you can buy for the PSP.


Overall Game Rating: 9.0/10

Deaf Gamers Classification:

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The PSP hasn't even been released for 2 months here in Europe yet and already the racing genre is beginning to look overcrowded. Burnout Legends is definitely the pick of all these racing games at the moment though.