A write up from Next Generation, about the future of racing games. And some additional thoughts of my own.

It does mention Burnout, but does talk about racing games in general.


The interview is interesting, but does not seem to say, hey this is what we need for you racers out there, they all seem lost, to see where they will go next. And that’s not a negative statement, it just seems that the developers seem to want to add more to a genre, that is just about cars, going fast and competing in racing environments, and of course winning.

IMO: As a Burnout fan

Racing games need players/AI (if the room hold 8’s, the host starts the race and if only 4 players are in the room, AI fills in the gaps), to compete against each other. Even when cruising. The taking down of a ‘won’ car in Paradise was a great idea.

Decent handling, I prefer Burnout type handling, but Sims need to have to option to be Realistic and Arcady, so you can choose how to play, serious or just for fun, and still compete in the same room/environment, just the guys who have it on realistic get more point bonuses.

Decent environments to race in. Race tracks, circuits, point to points, streets etc. Could Burnout use real race tracks with the type of handling that is used in game, yes I think so. Well with the old style yes, the new one needs some tweaks, but still possible as it stands, or maybe I need Tweaking?

Environmental physical effects, like Sega Rally, the ruts stay there for the race. Damage to the area stays for the race.

And the view you see the environment. A car has windows, those windows are glass/plastic (safety type either way), or in the case of other racing games, nets NASCAR. That view needs to be worked on, and be reactive, me saying, it can be broken, shattered, smeared with mud, rain, and other elements from the track and weather. Lighting, day and night etc.

We do have a lot of buttons on a controller, so options of lights, windshield wipers, horn etc, similar to real cars could be implemented. Hi-beam option to blind an oncoming rival could be funny. I mean in this day and age, real cars have those options as automatic, rain sensors, light sensors etc, so if you don't want manual, you could have the option to have it set on automatic too.

Also the use of a real car type of dash board/HUD, Speedo, trip, rev-counter etc. You need to know you are in a car and a driver of that car! Even if you don’t use the in car view.

Manual Gears, some people like that option in a game, cool, should be an option.

More types of vehicle to drive, trucks, bikes, cabs, Tuk-Tuks etc. And environments to make them work, dirt tracks for 4x4’s etc.

I know people like modding, the cars decals, body work, engine etc, cool option and should be a standard with in a racing game, maybe, if it is, the option for people who don't like it, have an automatic modding button.

Damage, now this is the point of where Arcade and Sim sort of part ways.

With the windshield option not really a problem, some slow down of the car, due to drag if it has been shattered out, but how about tires, blow outs, slow punctures etc. It is assumed that most tires on racing Sims and Arcade for that matter are the best racing tires out there some, so not much damage is applied, Forza 2 uses it, for wear and tear, and new tyres do need to be run in, so they grip the track when they warm up. Damage does affect handling, even in Paradise, but how far should it be taken with a Sim or even Arcade?

Game play, you need it to be fun, but you need some hardcoreness to it too. But where is that line, should there be an option similar to Forza 2, damage effects on etc. Should tracks be all speed demons, or have some braking and slow down to do some nasty turns? And this is where I too get lost.

What is good/great game play, I can play most race games, have tried most money allowing. Some are too simulator, some too arcade, so a balance is needed or a distinction higher than the wording on the box. Project Gotham went that way from 3 to 4, simulator to arcadeish.

If we look at just the Burnout series for racing:

Burnout (1) had some of the hardest check points to get to within a racing circuit/track, so within a single player game that was the sense of competition to beat those check point timers. AI was also good to race against.

Burnout 2 Point of Impact, had some of the best racing circuit/tracks and a definite improvement to the flow of racing, plus the boost chain element was the sense of competition. Again AI was good to race against but you also had a two player mode, which was awesome.

Burnout 3 Takedown, now this game with on-line play, brought a whole new ball game. Single player was great, with tracks/circuits/point to points and the added competition of taking down someone else and getting boost for that. And the best physics for those said takedowns, ever! It had the best online arcade racing bar none. And ranking was important for some, but the game play on-line was perfect bar some little bugs and glitches, some abused but did not bother to many people due to game play.

Burnout (4) Revenge (both incarnations for the Xbox, sorry keeping it Xbox, but the games across the platforms are similar), now this game just looked gorgeous, when compared to BO3 TD. Speed was the element of this game, single player was great, competitive, AI was strong and did their job, takedown physics seemed off, especially when going on-line. So people just raced, and took it to a new level with the Bug, boost jumping, and the sense of competition was getting lap times and ranking. And the tracks/circuits were great. Also Short Cuts were added or alternate routes, and jumps and the Vertical Takedown!

The PSP/PS of Burnout, Dominator and Legends, had great elements taken from the above games plus some new stuff thrown in too. The tracks were great, and the game play elements worked really well, and seem to follow the formula of going fast, and coming first in the races and earning boost. Only played these games on friend’s consoles/handhelds, so I can’t say too much, but from what I played, great games.

All the above games, were not open world, but did have tracks that crossed each other, or used parts of other tracks, or were used to link a long point to point etc. But definite areas that you raced in then moved to the next area etc. Also most kept stats of what you were doing, takedowns, lap time etc.

Burnout Paradise rebuilt for the next generation consoles. Keeping most of the elements from the last games (takedowns/boosting/stats (though not lap times) etc), but the races are Point to Points, within the open world so a freedom to go what way you want. With the option to make up routes/tracks/circuits within the multiplayer, as well as race most of the routes from the single player, if not all, have not really checked that, so assuming, but probably. The single player does not reflect this area specified racing from the previous games, it’s all open, cool, but no area specific racing/circuits/routes, like the others, seems to stray(stray, lol, got lost and eaten by someone more like) from lap orientated game play. (But the added element of Stunt Run and Marked Man, and the open area of Paradise reflect their use.) The AI in the game is fantastic for this type of game, yes they have some situations at times but overall they do their job, racing you, taking you down and each other and trying to win the race too, they also know where to go, most of the time, lol.

Paradise is different, from the old formula, of going really, really fast; to putting in the X button hand brake and using it to almost stop to get around a corner, seems like a natural progression and a new element to game play, but does mean that you do have to slow down! Slowing downing in an Arcade racer and Burnout to boot, seems a very bold move, but does seem to upset quite a few racers. And it does need it for what Paradise City has on offer, with its tight turns etc. We have different types of cars, different types of boost, all new elements, well not new but different or taken from the other games in the cannon.

You can still race similar to the older versions of the game, but due to the racers spread throughout the map, it seems hard to be competitive, until everyone knows the route placed before them. There is no consistency compared to the other games, there can be tight finishes via other routes and we all start together, but after that it’s a free for all, fine for a FPS, but racing I just don’t know. Being able to see a competitor within your field of view, front, rear or beside you adds to the sense of competition, and it can be that way with most player built races, but some races you see them start, then at the next start of the next round. If tracks can be built to finish within the same area, I think it will improve game play for this game; people can see the route within the map and see competitors around the next corner etc.

Sorry I’m Paradise bashing again!

Yes, Paradise has racing but the bar has been raised compared to the linear racing of the other Burnouts. It is not so easy to just win a race, different types of cars, boost, routes, (drop outs), and trying to get to grips with how the physics work in this game, from car handling, takedowns and being able to see what is really in front of you.

The sense of Competition seems to be the Dailies, ShowTime/Road Rules and Stunt Run (and scores are recorded for these events), the racing seems to be taking second place, even to the point of being nonexistent, unless it’s driven by the community, for the community, and made by the community.

There are no real scores for on-line racing except rank, no times are stored, total or lap. It may change with DLC, and I hope it does. Just because I have created a route does not mean I am the best at that route, but the only people to compare against it with are friends or whomever jumps in my room, but only if they win, and not due to how good they are, more due to luck of going the right way and not getting fouled up along the way? The real test is if they got a good time on that route and being able to compare it against others who have raced the same route, and repeating that performance.

Open World is not a new thing, the way Criterion handle it, seems to work for most of the time, and the tech they use seems to be great too, but I think it’s killing my DVD drive, I can hear it, trying to keep up, with its whirs and grinds but, I know it going to kill my 360, eventually.

Having a no loading world is all very well, but if they did not go that way, what would we have gotten?

Will the formula “that is just about cars, going fast and competing in racing environments, and of course winning against someone, anyone and having a record of that (times)” will be forgotten? With Burnout the added element of Takedowns and great crash physics!

If the physics for driving works, it looks graphically pretty, its competitive, it has external elements, like lighting, weather, some damage while playing, and crash physics, for the FUBAR crash, all that is needed is more players (how many is too much, 8, 12, 24 more, less not really sure) and more tracks/routes to race on.

And the DLC should be a graphic upgrade (TDU), cars and more tracks/routes etc. And that’s it, players would be happy.

That was what people wanted after BO3TD and Revenge, more tracks to play on, and maybe the odd new car. And a graphic upgrade.

With Burnout Paradise the same, but with the other elements within the game expanded, more challenges, Road Rage, Marked Man, multiplayer Stunt Run etc etc.

I had an idea with Drunknnumpty, that with all the information being built/stored from real car GPS’s, why can’t races for computer games be taken from that information. That people could race in a computer game, but use the street and town/cities that they live in, the road is the most important thing, the buildings and road side stuff, are just window dressing, which just zips by your view, but still looks pretty mind. I know TDU is there, with a whole island from the real world, but why not My Town, Manhattan, the whole of Great Britain, the USA, then the World.

People talk about GTA IV (another open world game type), but will ROCKSTAR use their car handling and driving from the Midnight Club series and use that within this game or will it be less and use the thumb sticks to drive, like the games of yore? I hope not.

To tell the truth when some game has a driving element in the game, but is not a driving game, e.g. a FPS, the controls that do get set up seem very poor, why do they not use what has been establish from other driving games. I sort of agree that the thumb sticks (one for each track) option used for tanks seems to work, I just need another player in there with me, using the turret and firing it, lol.

I think that racing games are not dead, but they do need to sort out what they are going to do in the future; GT is a simulator, driving game, so top of the racing, driving spectrum, while we have an XNA game like Jelly Car, which is a Puzzle racing game at the other end of the spectrum, by the way, the spectrum is not a rule of good and bad, just a look across the racing genre and just going by new driving games out or coming out.

What happens with the genre is up to developers; I know I want Car Wars to come to Next Gen, but that would require, sorry, probably need 20 g of hard drive space just for the customisation part of the game, then even more for the driving areas, and better networking and the internet to be universal for the amount of players per virtual driving space that the game requires, as it is also an MMO with RTS and FPS elements and of course driving, so it would raise the bar for our generation of consoles, maybe to high?

If someone built a Racing game that could let you take it serious with Simulation but tone it down to Arcade if the player wants, play online with many anyone’s, looks great and can have more downloadable tracks at regular intervals, and has pretty crash graphics, they will have a great game on their hands.

It is just a racing game after all, what more can be done that has not been done before?

Put it all in, right, and then let the player sort it out?


ZombieTron's picture

Why was this not a Blog Suf? or did you just want the record for the longest forum post, with the longest title.. to go with the one you have for the longest Blog??!

I Miss Arcade Racers!!!

I mentioned in the Criterion Games forum that I don't consider Paradise an Arcade Racer as its not the kind of game you can play in a coin-op arcade, the argument made back at me is that it is an arcade racer, cos it's not a sim.

But, just because it's not a sim, doesn't make it an arcade racer.

I love Burnout, because it was influenced by AM2 and I love AM2 Arcade Racers. IMO there still has not been an worthy Arcade Racer released on this generation of consoles (revenge doesn't count, it was last gen, and the others just suck!)

I really think there is a huge hole in the market for a really good Arcade Racer, and I don't see one on the horizon anytime soon.

There is also a Platformer hole on the 360. What happened to the games I used to love???

anyhoo... I'm just going for the longest forum reply now!!

--- The Original and the Best ---

ZombieTron's picture

kinda depressing that not one of them mentioned speed or racing as priorities??? If the people developing racing games are focused on smoke and dirt effect and having a story what hope does the genre have???

--- The Original and the Best ---

SUFFUR's picture

...most people never really say any think back to me on the blogs, not even good point or bad point, well some do which is cool, but going by the number of reads i do get, i thought i would get more interaction with the community, with comments.

Maybe with the forum we will discuss our racing future? And give the developers the ideas to make that great arcade racer or simulator driving game.

People like Paradise, but why, people hate Paradise but why? And not just trash talk, like it's not Revenge etc, but what we really wanted, what we want in the future.

If developers are talking about it in the article, its time we said something too.

When Paradise was annouced, hopes were high, now after the fall out, we have new players but the old vets have gone, why? Sure I have read a lot of forum posts, some very good, some just pointless, childishness. But where did it go sort of wrong. I like Paradise, but it's not a Burners Paradise is it?

I, from the birth of computer/console gaming, Pong and upwards, i sort of know the history of gaming, it's my generation, true my point of view but i'm going to learn more, what else do I have to do, I'm an unemployable cripple at the mo. But if I can raise input with words, and be joined by others, maybe our gaming future will be better, a reason for this site I thought.

I just want games to be better, more fun, and being able to share that, some of my ideas, may need a better console, or be placed upon the PC platform, but i want a better form of game!

Look at Paradise, there are different locations with in the game that could be used, like the Basket ball court, and we could get out of our cars and play that game within Paradsie, Football, Baseball etc etc. We could get out skate boards, start a gang war with guns, the possibilities are end less.

Maybe EA are the company that can do this, they have all these gaming houses bought and paid for, but they don't seem to bring them together to make a great game, that you can do everything with, and yes i don't mind loading to do it, if its going from one sub game to the next.

When PS started talking about HOME, i was hoping that was going to happen in a way, that people come to my HOME and we can use our Avatars, to go across gaming platforms, with in that space? Jump into our fav cars and drive around a virtual world of racing, set up a game of looking for lost gold, that was user created, etc.

The Governments want to keep us in-doors, then give us the tools to stay home like the vegatables, they want us to be!

See now I'm getting worked up. I want more, I paid for it, from console, live, internet, games, TV, extra everything, and for what, to be pissed off when my dream of an up and coming game, that gets crushed, when it turns out not what you hoped it would be?

Most games are becoming very same old same old, we need a Reader Digest of each genre, then after they are released, some new maps etc, but then while we are busy playing, they are looking for new game to play, not something the same.

We paid our money, enough to line many deep pockets, now the Profits should be put back into looking for new stuff for us to try, then once something works, take that to it highest level, then move the kcuf on, making something else. Also game companies should help each other out, we have lost many great games, due to the companies going bust, due to lack of funds.

Anyway people, we control everything, if we wanted to, from politics, heath, games, the World, you name it, we could do anything. And all I wanted was a great racing game, and now it seems i'm going to have to learn how to do that, and make my own, and i hate having to work that hard! Or maybe like the sheep i am, not do a thing and just shut the kcuf up, and let someone else do the work.

I'm done for today, maybe more tomorrow?

And for kcuf sake people, say something, even if it is I am a moron, and no Kev you need something more original! Or vote, so at least I know i'm going in the right direction, oh shit i just realised, nobody is voting, maybe i was wrong after all.

Anyway Peace to all, and yes i'm smiling as always, but this one is showing teeth.

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?

kevlar0's picture

Although I am enjoying paradise at the moment, today’s best, the odd bit of racing etc, I’m missing time comparisons big time, I just love doing laps and shaving 10th of seconds off, I miss comparing lap times with my friends, I know we have road rules, but with totally random traffic patterns you don’t really stand a snowballs chance in Hades of getting two nearly identical runs, especially on the longer roads,

I do disagree with SHUFFER on the environmental physical effects; I couldn’t give a hoot if the ruts are there next lap, or if my windscreen has mud on it, and I’m not really arsed about day/night, rain/snow. To me these are just things that get in the way of racing, I wanna see where I’m going, To be able to clearly see an obstruction so I can take evasive action, before I hit it and get sent barrel rolling in yet another crash cut scene.

Basically I want the moon on a stick and I want it now. I want online road rage with good takedown physics (BO3 style).  Marked man, track races, lap times, cars that don’t get stuck on walls, not having three hour long crash cut scenes,  those bloody ridiculous respawns ( the beach, south mountain jump in races, and countless other respawns).

For me the online just isn’t deep enough, Jeeze I did over 1500 hours on burnout 3 alone, with paradise as it is now I know I’m not gonna be anywhere near that number, and I don’t think I’m gonna be alone.

Anyhoo, good read STUFFER  and I wouldn’t be so shallow as to call you a moron, when you know you are a stoat gobbling monkey worrier.

my dog ate my disc.

ZombieTron's picture

So far I still have less then 100 hours on Paradise, so I don't see how I'm going to be reaching the thousands that I have on Takedown and Revenge. But, maybe DLC will deliver and give us a game we can play for a few years yet.... I think Paradise is a good solid base, just needs some icing on the top!

--- The Original and the Best ---

Rofer's picture

Yeah Suffur I like most of your ideas about the future of racing games, you have some really good constructive critisism that the burnout team really needs to take advantage of. I know that burnout is just trying to make more appeal to a wider audience whilst attempting to keep their old fans, but that is where they have failed because at least half of the old fans preferred it the way it was before. What I always loved so much about the burnout series is that every game that comes out was always faster, more intense and fulfilling because it kept on keeping that core feel to burnout, plus something extra. Until paradise comes out, and they take away the core feel and the actual feeling of real burnout speed and add on extra stuff so that people won't notice.

I absolutely hate the freeburn challenges more than anything else in paradise. It just doesn't feel like burnout to drive around in circles trying to barrel roll through some random crap.  I honestly believe freeburn challenges are a disgrace to burnout.

We really need to have a extreme arcade racer in the future, i am so determined about this that i am studying programming all i can so that i can work on being the developer of the best arcade racer ever!! I am totally serious about this it is my dream, and i am inspired mainly by burnout 2-4. Suffur i see that you might be trying something like this too good luck man we both need it!!

SUFFUR's picture

I think the challenges are in there, one for something to do while the room fills up, but also to get the feel of the cars, which one's crash quickly etc, but also if in a race, if you hit a jump you know what the car will do, and can compensate for it, by flat spinning it, rather than crashing it.

Also Stunt Run is a very main ingredient, of Paradise, and again with the challenges, the more you can mess with the car, the better your stunt runs will be. But when I'm just hanging awaiting room fill, or just want to natter when driving, I try and break my daily scores, Consecutive air time (22 seconds or so), jump (236 yards maybe more not sure) distance and Flat spinning (not as good as Kev), the other day, did five barrel rolls, and had witnesses (sp?), which was cool, and maybe better than Kev, hehe.

The game is great for what it gives, but those racing elements do need work! Road handling, takedowns, more boost for buck etc. But what i want to know is how an agression car is supposed to earn boost, traffic checking gets you nothing, which I thought was being agressive per say?

So far, using a stunt car for races is justified, as well as some of the race cars, but the boost seems to be earned very slowly for both, and when trying to use an agression car, it just can't get any speed, to keep up, to get takedowns to earn more boost?

The racing with the use of all cars, does not seem to be possible, people will say you are racing, use a race car, stupid! But I though all the cars could compete, and that is just not the case. Though I am not saying, if I was in a B class car I should be able to beat a Burnout Car, I have done, much to my enjoyment, and someones displeasure, lol. But the cars, would be able to compete if with in the same class, and that is just not really possible.

The rankers just stick with, the WTR, PCPD, Solo, or Revenge Racer, true a better spread, compared to the other burnout games, but i thought, it would have more of a spread. And no I'm not talking about Favourite Cars, just ones fast enough to win with in Ranked races or not, as the case maybe at this time!

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?

SUFFUR's picture

As Alex could say, lol.

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?

Patience is something I taught myself, so I never know when it's going to run out?