Games: Race and chase classic Burnout Paradise hits the Switch in Remastered form
Burnout Paradise Remastered (Switch)
WHY should you pop your Pirellis onto the virtual asphalt of Paradise City again? We've been here before with both the 2008 original and 2018's remaster and those crow's feet are getting hard to ignore on the big screen. But blazing across the portable Switch, it's a thing to behold – now it won't be 'Paradise lost' when away from the telly.
It's fitting that the setting for the fifth Burnout game came from Guns N' Roses' Appetite for Destruction, as Paradise City hosts some of the most devastating carnage ever committed to a videogame. With 30 virtual kilometres of full-contact racing that awards precious nitro for vehicular homicide, it may not have much of a brain, but it's definitely got a pulse as you explore a free-roam city where crashes are just as important as the driving.
Handling strikes the perfect balance between grippy and slippy while its sandbox approach means much of your time is spent merrily bombing through the streets and beyond, from city sprawl to mountain passes. Filled to the brim with barriers, backstreets and big-air jumps – complete with Dukes of Hazard style camerawork – it's a dream-come-true for autophiles: driving in the wrong lane, near-missing oncoming traffic and destroying enemy cars accumulates your Burnout bar, which can be splurged on ridiculously high speeds, all while your ears are flayed by classic rock anthems from the likes of Guns N' Roses, Alice in Chains and Soundgarden.
Running at a constant 60fps, both docked and in handheld mode, I've yet to see a single frame dropped, though the night-time racing is pitch-black on the Switch screen, which is also just too small for my aged peepers to read the on-screen text.
Just how they managed to stuff the full remaster onto a Switch cart is pure alchemy, and you'll not only get the base game but all of its DLC – including KITT, Ecto-1 and the Back To The Future DeLorean, plus an entire new island to explore – while streamlined multi-player means you can quickly leap into the Burnout community for some online cops and robbers style capture-the-flag action.
The fifth Burnout game would be become the iconic series' swansong, and its latest Lazarus act scratches the exact same itch the 2008 original did for the best portable arcade racer by a country mile. If only it didn't leave such a sour taste in the pocket. The PS4 and Xbox One remasters launched on a budget, yet Switch owners are asked to pony up full price for what's ultimately a 12-year-old game.
Paradise in the palm doesn't come cheap.