Burnout Revenge Xbox 360 Q&A

Matt Webster, executive producer at Criterion Games, answers our questions about the upcoming Xbox 360 version of Burnout Revenge.

Electronic Arts and Criterion Games have today confirmed that an Xbox 360 version of Burnout Revenge is currently in development and scheduled for release in March next year. That the long-rumored-to-exist game will feature improved visuals is a given, but Criterion Games has many more improvements in store for Xbox 360 owners as well, as executive producer Matt Webster explains.

GameSpot: The Xbox 360 version of Burnout Revenge is going to be more than just a prettier version of the Xbox game, right? Any new content?

Burnout Revenge's vehicles will look significantly better on Xbox 360...

Matt Webster: Absolutely. When looking at the 360 version of our game, we wanted to make it the showcase version, the pinnacle of Revenge on any console. With every Burnout game, we look at the areas that are most important to us and what we are able to do on the hardware that we are creating the game on. For the 360, it was clear that Microsoft was gearing the machine at the connected generation. It feels like you are not getting all that the machine has to offer if you aren't connected to the Net, so we made this our focus with our Live Revenge and Save & Share features.

Live Revenge
We've spent an awful amount of time looking at games online and how they are played. They all seem to stick to the same basic premise: connect to a server, find some people, play the game, come back to a lobby. We really wanted to change this, to take it further, and that's what we are doing with Live Revenge.

Gamers come together in the lobby and then we do something brand new. We look at how these players connect with each other in a real sense, and then we highlight these relationships to all players. So, six players come together, we look to see who has played whom before. Perhaps you have taken me down in a previous game, perhaps I am the highest-ranked player, or maybe we haven't played each other before. Whatever the case, when the game starts, we fly the camera around each of the racers in the game, and then every player gets a rival relationship called out.

If you have taken me out in a previous game, it tells me that you are a Revenge Rival, and tells me what the score is between us. Simultaneously the game is telling you that I am coming after you, and that you are ahead in takedowns. If I am the player with the highest rank, the game will show me to everyone, calling me out and giving everyone a focus, a target to takedown. It's all about long memories and short tempers! These relationships are persistent--we track them, we look at how they change, and we tell the player. Perhaps I haven't been online for a while, so if we get into the same game, we'll highlight this fact to both you and me, telling us that there is a vendetta between us.

…at least until you crash, and the new damage effects kick in.

It's about building relationships, giving the player a focus, and then tracking how these relationships change. Maybe you're owning me, you are 10 takedowns ahead, so the game tells you. But, there's a twist, we took a look at how sports fans talk to each other. The 49ers have won the last nine games straight at home against the Cardinals--they're up, they're winning, they can boast about their record. However, as soon as the Cardinals win a game at Monster Park, that's all that matters--the scores are settled, the boasting stops, and the intensity goes up a notch. That's what we are achieving with Revenge online. You're ahead by 10, but when I take you down, the scores are settled, and it starts again!

We feel that we are making a real change to how games are played and sustained online. Persistently tracking the relationships between everyone who plays Burnout online makes the game more powerful and gives all gamers a focus. In every game that you play, there will be something going on, and that's before the real action has even started!

Save & Share
The other main element that we are talking about is called Save & Share. Replays have always been the most requested features from Burnout fans. We kind of tried to do it on Burnout 1, but now with the power that we have at our disposal, we can do it in the way that we always imagined. Burnout is always an amazing game to watch--we have the best action! We always have these times when you say "Did you see that?" With Revenge on 360, you can show people. Now, when you finish a World Tour event, you will be shown a replay of the action. That's nothing new you may think?! Well we're giving the player the ability to make a highlight of the best bit of action. You hit the record button and save a section of this replay to the HDD or memory unit. Cool! The real innovation here is that you can select the share option. The replay will be uploaded to your own section of the server where other gamers can share it. They'll be able to download and rate your action. We're going to keep track of the top 20 most downloaded highlight reels and we'll publicize these in the game. So, that amazing crash you did, or the high score on a crash junction? Upload it and share it with the world!

GS: How many players will the game support online, and will 360 players be able to interact with Xbox players in any way?

You'll be able to share your best highlight reels with other players.

MW: The game supports six players online, and unfortunately 360 players won't be able to compete with Xbox players due to the new online features that we've implemented.

GS: Are there any features being implemented that simply wouldn't be possible on any console other than the Xbox 360 at this point?

MW: Live Revenge and Save & Share were features that we were unable to execute on for current-generation games. In addition, the way that we are damaging and deforming the cars and how we accentuate these with effects were not achievable on PS2 or Xbox. For example, we're using a per-pixel vector motion blur on 360. This just isn't possible on PS2 or Xbox. GS: Vehicle damage has always been a prominent feature of the Burnout games. Presumably the carnage will be even more spectacular on Xbox 360?

MW: We're using a multitude of shaders to give us crumples and scratches in addition to physical deformation that has moved on a level from previous Burnout games. Applying particles and special effects on to the car damage and coupled with what we can do with audio will mean that crashes in Revenge 360 will be like nothing you've experienced! GS: The Xbox 360's achievement points system looks to be taking off in a big way. Any idea how you'll be awarding them in Burnout Revenge 360? How do you make decisions like that?

MW: We think they're great, so we have achievements throughout the game, both offline and online. We want to use these to reward all skill levels.

GS: What do you think the main incentives will be for owners of PS2 or Xbox versions of Burnout Revenge to upgrade to the 360 version when it comes out?

Burnout Revenge's visuals aren't the only thing being improved for Xbox 360.

MW: I think that a lot of people have concentrated on the visual enhancements that 360 gets you. We've concentrated on new features that take Revenge further than it's been before to give a game that you couldn't get on Xbox or PS2.

GS: Finally, any idea when we can expect to see Burnout Revenge 360 on shelves?

MW: March 2006.

GS: Thanks for your time.

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24 comments
wakofx
wakofx

well... this sounds great... but Haloferret why on earth would say "death to Sony"? considering all the other Burnouts have been released on PS, this game will almost definately be released for PS3. and sony is not dumb so im sure they will be adding an online service for it as well like playOnline 3 or something. anyway... judging from ur nic, ur clearly not a REAL gamer, but just a sucker for MS marketing!

madgamer2000
madgamer2000

a secret game from rare?!?!? if they hurry and start now, maby it will be done sometime before the end of the xbox-720s life span. that aside, the graphics in this look great, and it's still burnout revenge. I dont see why they should have to put tons of new content in the game. Its for people with an xbox360 who want burnout with better graphcis. not a totally new game.

panther008
panther008

i wanna see an extremly awesome CRASH MODE see parts fly off my car hood pop up and see the engine moving and working make it like i wanna stop and drive by a gas station and get a coke or pepsi make the graphics that realistic

lozandier
lozandier

Cartoon, you don't know what in the WORLD you talking about when you said PS3 is double the power of 360, For one, THe PS3 is not that much better in graphics then 360, just 50mhz of a difference, another is 360 is much easier to make games for and that has been said by many of the most famed developers like Id. One 360 kills PS3 in performance with three cores that pwns the "sub-cores" PS3 has. In fact, Microsoft has released a document that shows the PS3 can practially never reach its Graphic Peaks due to its hardware conflicts. Go go IGN and search for this document, Microsoft themselves mailed. PS3 has weak online support, Extra Features not even 10% percent of their consumers are going to use (1080p, Dual HDTV support/ Use Two HDTV's at the same time, Seven Controllers at once?!!), Weak First Party games (except say Jak, and Grand Turmoiso, and Rachet and Clank; Pardon I misspelled GT). Not saying PS3 is a bad system just that 360 is technollogy better, (though it should have had wireless built in and had a next gen format). No doubt Sony will be the king of Japan, but in the western part of the world, its dominance will be DECLINED, And not to burst your bubble, but Rockstar looks to be more interested in widening their audience then just Sony, AND DON'T FORGET NOT ONE BUT TWO GAMES FROM GTA CORE CREATORS IS COMING EXCLUSIVELY TO MICROSOFT, DON'T FORGET That Microsoft has a hughe first person arsenal coming 2006, TOO HUMAN, Crackdown, Mass Effect, Oblivion, A SECRET GAME IN DEVELOPMENT FROM RARE, and the biggest game that will make 360 come out big Software Sales in 2006, HALO 3 (Though I highly doubt it will come out; at least details and screenshots will come out) I mean 2006 is the year 360 will come out of the gates, AND Don't Forget Nintendo, they have a Software lineup that's almost 100% going to be Platium in sale charts, METROID PRIME 3, Next Gen Mario/ Super Smash Melee,etc (FACE It, Like it or not, it's going to sell tons) Not saying Nintendo will greatly challenge SOny (which is almost a joke but you can NEVER Underestimate Nintendo) But It will greatly harm when PS3 comes out, I mean PS3 got major hits coming launch two, (MGS. Nuff Said) like GT, and Devil May Cry 4. But the other systems looking to have a much better Game lineup 2006 OVERALL. I mean games like madden 07 and Sonic The Hedgehog are going 360 anyways, And Without the Third Pary Support PS3 IS INFERIOR; No disrespect but the controller looks like a bommerang, the system looks like a toaster, (I know it's a beta but damn), Weak Online Cummunity, 360 has everything practially PS3 has and has much more functionaiity with the other stuff around the house; The PC, Ipod, etc. Don't forget it can play/function stuff the whole family can use, like Photo-cd's, MSN, All these things Make 360 a better system for fun in my humble opinion, and I can safely say this, if 360 had PS3's game support in Japan/Around the world, 360 would PWN Sony no question, WITHOUT PS3's THIRD PARTY SUPPORT, PS3 is INFERIOR to 360. The ONLY Thing That Harms 360 is Not Having a next gen format, that's about it.... (Sorry for the long message, :)

Gunmetalman
Gunmetalman

Yeah the graphics look nice but I think EA should consider (like most devlopers) a little thing called download content. Rather than churning out a whole new game, how about just improving the one that's out now EA?

Farcical
Farcical

I don't own any Burnout game and I've only played Takedown for PS2, so I'll probably wait for the 360 version of Revenge to buy my first title in the series.

animeGTZ
animeGTZ

Cartoon is a fanboy, only fanboys drool over vaporware that won't see the light of day (in the states) for at least a year. I could say my '91 Civic is 2x as powerful as a dodge viper till I'm blue in the face, and you couldn't prove me wrong until I raced said viper. The point being, don't jump to conclusions till yoiu've seen the hardware in action. Sony has a habit of making grand claims that turn out to be lies. They came right out and said that the Killzone cut-scene was actual game footage, when the folks who are developing the game said it was pre-rendered. Just keep swallowing Sony's hype, somebody's got to.

ElementalFire
ElementalFire

The lobby system sounds cool, but as long as EA is hosting the master server, Live will always be crappy. I hope they fix the bugs/glitches. ESPECIALLY the drift jump. "PS3 twice as powerful as xbox Twee siXty. Blue ray disk 54 gigabytes........Xbox Twee siXty 9 gig'z = xbox is really stupid.....................PS3 Grand Theft Auto...Unbelivable" (cartoon966230) Wow. Your incoherency amazes me. I think I'm going to switch to the gaystation right away, based on your very compelling argument! Oh wait, that's right. It's not even gone into production yet. Silly me.

cartoon966230
cartoon966230

PS3 twice as powerful as xbox Twee siXty. Blue ray disk 54 gigabytes........Xbox Twee siXty 9 gig'z = xbox is really stupid.....................PS3 Grand Theft Auto...Unbelivable

CSM55
CSM55

And by the way, Autolycus has no idea what he's talking about. If he did, people would care what he says

CSM55
CSM55

If they REALLY want to earn my $60, they better bring back replays in crash mode, team crash, fix the lame bugs AND put in a film director option. Until then, it's just a game on a SLIGHTLY better system

Shorty252
Shorty252

This looks great its nice that even though Criterion was bought out by EA they still continue to innovate and make great burnout games. I will definitely pick this one up, day one.

Autolycus
Autolycus

PS3 WILL NOT be laucnhed until xmas of next year. Sony has not announced a date, but considering they havent even started development of the system(they are still trying to produce the cell processor efficently), good luck waiting for such a long time. Not to mention Sony has mutliple lawsuits from 2 states(tx, ny, with more to follow) and 1 Class Action Lawsuit regarding the PS2(since it was built like crap and breaks on majority of owners/customers, all to save .03 of a penny). Then on top of that PS3 is nothing like the PS2. The compiler is completely different and a different language is being used. Oh yeah and the graphics chip(as powerful as it is) is nothing like any previous system either. So if you think that ANYONE(including creativity killers EA) can get the game done in 6 months, which is spring of 2006,(the dev. kits are just PC's) then you are highly WRONG. As for the article. The features that they took into account sound great. I am glad that someone @ EA is thinking outside of the box instead of creating games to make a quick buck, by selling them based to a certain demographical image. PS3 is doomed without a Hard Drive and considering the plan to launch "considerably more expensive then the XBOX 360" without the hard drive...they just keep digging themselves a bigger whole... oh yeah and Blue Ray sucks

Death1234567890
Death1234567890

Um this is about the 360...port, not the "PS3" game. There is no proof that their is one anyways.

j10jep2
j10jep2

Wow. That sounds.....REALLY ****ing cool.

visor123
visor123

Nice. They should make the PS3 version too and do the same.

jason_jx
jason_jx

I hope its more than just a port....

maic
maic

good question, what about godfather? when will it be ready? will it be ready for the PS3? that

xcon4
xcon4

EA should make Revenge for PS3 or some new Burnout game.

davahsa
davahsa

I hope EA makes this a true next gen game and not just a better looking port. They have talked alot, but not delivered for such a dominant company. And what about God Father?