Though it features nice crashes, the charm wears off and flaws begin to surface fast enough.

User Rating: 3 | Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box PC
First, what I liked about it.

The crashes. Yes, this game has done a heck of a job in showing the crashes - when you hit something at high speed, an ultra slow motion camera will show the car mold and bend like a crash testing screen. Coupled with the particle effects for glass and wind, this really is an eye candy. You can check it out in almost any gameplay video in youtube.

Unfortunately that's all there seems to be in the game. There are so many things missing that I soon lost interest - and even the crashes began to get old fast since they happen very frequently (with perhaps some deliberate intention from my subconscious, as they are just about the only thing likable.)

The car controls like arcare, which is okay considering this is an arcade game. However, pulling the handbreak turns the car wildly which is not okay. Some people also feel the lack of manual gear shift.

The background music is some old rock - and the same song plays everytime you start the game. Coupled with this is the highly irritating, idiotic and arrogant 'DJ Atomica' who keeps making smart-ass comments from time to time to add to the ambience.

Though the map has many car races to choose from, it gets repetitive very soon as there are three kinds of event and the number of finish locations is pretty limited. Also there is no preset track - you need to form your own route from start to finish for the races. This is typically done by pausing the game every 5 seconds to look at the map to figure out where you are and which turn to take next. This may not be as easy as it seems, since the criss-crossed roads in the map do not clearly show where you have an option to take an intersection or where you can jump off to a nearing road to shorten your journey. And you guessed it, there is no GPS - only a feeble compass which marks the end point. Of course, according to 'DJ Atomica', you need to memorize the Paradise City roads so that they are in your finger tips. Unfortunately, the game doesn't really give much incentive to do that. And did I mention that it is also not easy to retry the previous race, as you may have to travel all through the map to the start point of the race? It is much easier and tempting to try some nearby races from where you are instead.

The uninstallation took as much time as installation. And surprise, during the uninstallation process suddenly the game fired up! Yes, the game started without warning while it was being uninstalled. I guess this is to de-authorize the machine from online play or something. But this is just stupid design - looks like a bunch of code monkeys following the instructions from their bosses to get things done mindlessly. Also after uninstallation, it leaves a couple of DLLs, a text file and lots of registry keys in your system.

Overall, it was a pretty lame experience.