#497 Burnout 2: Point of Impact

Posted: 17th December 2011 by Mulholland in Games
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108th played so far

Genre: Driving
Platform: Gamecube/PS2/Xbox
Year of Release: 2002
Developer: Criterion Games
Publisher: Acclaim Entertainment

A racing game? Yeah. A sequel to another one. What does it advertise as its own special feature? High risk racing. Crashes. This isn’t about bashing cars out of the way to get past… although breaking them might be a good alternative.

From a company known mostly for its 3D rendering engine, we get this racer featuring plenty of impacts. So how much of a racer does that make it?

Our Thoughts

You know why this game is better than most of the driving games I have ever played? It actually rewards you for amazing cinematic style crashes.  In fact, it even encourages you to make a petrol tanker to swerve into a bus… that could quite possibly be containing school children.  The game certainly loves its crashes. So much in fact that one of its modes – the most interesting one, in fact – is simply to create the biggest crash you can. Don’t worry we tried all the modes (honest) but we were disproportionally preoccupied with the crash modes. Needless to say, it’s awesome.

Before we go into that, let’s just quickly mention those other modes. You see, for most of it, these are just the usual racing modes – single race, campaign, training. You can gain a turbo type mode by doing such dangerous things as driving on the wrong side of the road, barely avoiding crashes and doing long jumps. When you get it and use it all the way through, you get burnout, as the title implies, which makes you a bit less destructible and a bit faster for a bit longer. A nice idea, fun to play, but the racing itself isn’t much enhanced by this, in part because the crashes reduce your gauge, and you crash easily in this game. Very easily.

They are all well and good but they are dwarved in comparison to the epicness that is the crash mode. The book itself points out it is the beauty of this mode’s destructive capabilities which got this game onto the list. During this mode you are given a scenario with a pre-determined vehicle AI on the roads, it is your task to cause the maximum amount of damage out of one collision. The difficulty varies wildly between the levels but it never detracts from the fun. Even when you clinch a gold medal there is always some fun in creating even more havoc and mayhem. There are just so many options, and always another car, school bus or fuel truck to add to the crash.

It is a pity that there is not a way to create some flaming wreckage as you watch the petrol tanker tip over… but I guess they needed to leave something for the threequel. The graphics aren’t that great – there’s no big explosions and cars breaking apart. They look more wrecked, but are generally sturdy and don’t do much more than that. The fun is more in the amount of crashes than the individual graphics. It also has a pretty impressive physics engine for a driving game. Something that belongs in a game favouring crashes.

I know it’s simple, I know it’s short, but that’s how it works. The racing in this game is simple enough. It’s all about the crashes. That’s what you’ll want to play this for, that’s what we played it for. It’s also what we loved it for.

Final Thoughts

We’re sorry for the short review – not much worth your money. To be honest, we probably didn’t play the other modes too much. We didn’t really want to, to be fair. We wanted to crash cars. More cars. Destroy millions of dollars by crashing cars. Crash crash crash.

I’m sorry. We’re just a tad obsessed this time. We hope you understand. Why don’t you crash a few cars too. In the game. Not in real life. We don’t do it in real life. Crash cars, that is. We do play games in which we do it.


  1. […] to try out and the many different features in the game are brilliant. It’s comparable to Burnout 2: Point of Impact‘s crash mode in simply revelling in the glory of destruction. I know it’s fairly simple […]

  2. […] mostly remember Burnout 2 as a chaotic racer whose big selling point was a big crashing mode that felt especially exciting […]