Of all the titles I'm excited about, Burnout3 is right at the top of the list; I might even go as far to say that I'm more excited for it than Halo2. Today's IGN review - (9.5) - drove the nail into the coffin, as far as I'm concerned.
I have fond memories of playing Burnout2 last summer while listening to baseball games on the radio. While the Yankees were bludgeoning the hell out of the rest of the AL, I too was obsessively replaying Crash mode, bludgeoning buses and trucks and trying to squeeze one or two thousand dollars more out of every attempt. While I never finished the single-player mode - the races at the end were ridiculously hard - I still enjoyed the time I spent with it.
When the first screenshots of Burnout3 surfaced last fall, I was downright giddy. It looked absolutely fantastic, and the rumors of XboxLive-enabled modes whetted my appetite. And then, of course, EA swooped in, bought the game, and made it online for PS2 only, which drove me insane and prompted my very loud "BOYCOTT EA / BOYCOTT BURNOUT3" rantings - and you'd better believe I was in pain, knowing I wouldn't own Burnout3 no matter how good it ended up being. I was so disgusted that I even traded in my other EA games - just looking at the logo made me angry. (Sorta like how I feel about George Bush, but that's another entry.)
So when this year's E3 rolled around and EA and XboxLive made peace, I freaked out. Not because of Madden, or Tiger Woods, or anything else - it was because Burnout3 would be XBL-enabled, and that meant I would own it.
Now it's just a few days away.
I've got a ton of games on my buy-list; I've already pre-ordered Fable and Halo2, and I'll be getting Battlefront, Tiger 2005 and others, but I anticipate playing Burnout3 for a long, long time. Here's hoping that Burnout4 is a launch title for the next-next-gen systems. And if Xbox2 isn't backward-compatible, Burnout3 will be a compelling reason to keep my Xbox1 front and center.