Platforms: PS2 & Xbox - PS2 version reviewed.
Ever get that feeling that we’re not quite ready for the next generation?
Just when it seems that we’ve exhausted the potential of Xbox, Gamecube and PlayStation 2, along comes something that shows there’s still extra power that can be squeezed out of the current-generation systems; that there’s enough oomph in the existing boxes to slacken your jaw in surprise and wonder. Nowhere has this been more surprising than on the PS2.
Just when we’d got used to it being the Xbox’s whipping boy – the console that can’t do Doom 3 or Far Cry: Instincts – along comes something to prove it can still deliver on the shock and awe front. Gran Turismo 4 did it. God of War definitely did it. And while Burnout: Revenge packs a little more punch in its Xbox incarnation, the PS2 version is a staggering achievement.
Somehow, that supposedly near-obsolete black box under your TV is handling rich, detailed environments, gorgeous textures, reflections galore, a packed field of racers, heavy traffic and a whole mass of twisting, shearing metal, all moving at ludicrously high speeds with a frame rate that never seems to drop below 60fps for a second. While doing so, it’s running a spectacular if exaggerated physics engine that throws cars around like toys in a playpen, and AI routines that have a vicious, playful personality of their own.
It even has a lovely faux-HDRI lighting effect that smacks more of this year’s new hardware than something five years old. If you see Revenge running and don’t feel the hairs pricking up at the back of your neck, then you’re either stupidly dull or you need to get your sight checked.