It fails as hard as it tries.
But then you have to play the game itself.
As stated before, the presentation of this game is excellent and I loved everything about it. Yes, there aren't enough tracks. Yes, there aren't enough cars. Yes, you get through the game's entire soundtrack in about five races or so. And yes, some of the game's visuals kind of look douchy and stupid. But man, to me, the entire thing looks gorgeous and so cool. Blur is plagued by a few simple problems that may ruin the entire experience for you. It certainly did for me. Before I begin with that I have to explain the premise first.
Blur. You are a racer who wants to show off your driving skills in Nonamed City. You win races, get fans, fans get you levels, levels get you new cars to put in your gigantic pocket. Win enough races and do enough tricks and you can fight bosses with a personality as dry as sandpaper and the only distinction they seem to have is that the developers swap faces.
You got that? Alright? Alright, cool.
So Blur is essentially a kart racer without karts. Instead you get cars like Chevy's and Audi's with plasma bolts, lightning storms and superturbo's to ram other cars. I understand the bots also want the power-ups, but they seem to be hellbent on taking my power-up. No, seriously. I drive towards it, and the other bots are desperate to race for what I'm after. I GET IT, but why are so many bots targeting ME? It's the Unreal Tournament III problem where bots will target you and only you. It's not one man for himself, it's 19 bots versus 1 human player, and that's bullsh*t. I hate it when games do that.
You can simply race the tracks and try to be first, but there are two extra challenges in every single race. Those are the Fans-requirement and the Fangates. They are both horrible systems. I understand them, but saying that it's poorly implemented and frustrating is an understatement. In every race, whatever cool trick you do such as wrecking other cars or doing drifts you will generate fans. But even on the Easy difficulty level, the amount of fans required is preposterous. In that, it's almost impossible to get to that high amount. I understand why it's THERE and I even think it's a clever idea but it feels completely unnecessary and tacked-on. All it does is function as Experience Points.
On another level, it makes no sense at all. I will explain why. You may think: "If you get to the first place in the race, you'll have 50-75% of the fans needed, right? Because you won the race and OBVIOUSLY people see a winner in you." Wrong. Not even close. You PURPOSELY have to handicap yourself, slow down or even stop the car because, when you're in front, you'll BARELY generate fans. It's ridiculous. Wouldn't winning lots of races, leaving other cars completely in the dust win you lots of fame and fans? It makes the system completely obsolete and continues to frustrate completionists. Even people who aren't frustrated should be confused and puzzled by this. It only serves to lengthen the already short campaign and frustrate people like me. The amount of fans you generate should factor in how fast you got to the end, how accurate you were, how many power-ups you managed to collect and use in a correct manner, how fast you got to the first place, all that kind of stuff.
Now onto the Fangates. While it's an interesting idea, it's, again, not fleshed out enough. Fangates are an extra way to generate a great number of extra fans for the ridiculous amount mentioned above. However, the gates themselves are VERY small and it's a miss one, miss 'em all kinda system. So when the previously mentioned AI SLIGHTLY BUMPS you, it's over. You don't get your fan requirement, you don't get your fangate merit, and you're left frustrated.
Blur has no idea what it wants to be. On every screenshot, trailer, cover and every other depiction of the game everything screams speed. Go fast, win races, unlock fast cars, use crazy weapons. Well, in quite a few tracks, you are required to drive really slow, or you'll miss out on fangates, as earlier stated, or you need to grab certain objects in some races which are very important to win said race. On some occassions I feel like the game wanted to be like DiRT, which is fine but you can't have both fast racing like Mario Kart and careful driving like DiRT in one game! I'm not talking about using the brake button and slowing down, I'm talking about carefully tapping the acceleration button to MOVE FORWARD. Careful driving and high-octane racing just doesn't go together. I constantly flattened my car against solid wall and wrecked my car because of certain tracks that just don't allow fun fast driving. It makes for a oddly difficult and confusing game.
Speaking of difficulty, don't you hate it when you are a master on one difficulty level, and you just want a bit of extra challenge? Or you think the game is just a LITTLE bit too difficult so you set the difficulty just a little lower or higher and you just spontaneously combust from the pure difficulty or pure boredom. Yeah. This is one those games. Hey Bizarre Creations, I got three words for you: Unreal Tournament 2004.