Next-Gen Burnout Info

As seen at 1UP, Newsweek’s N’Gai Croal has sat down with Criterion’s Alex Ward to talk about Burnout on the PS3 and, at some point, on the 360 as well. Alex seems like they’re focusing on the PS3, saying “we’re kind of specialists on the Sony system. Because it was always that way on Burnout. But we are doing some cool stuff on 360.” What sort of cool stuff can we look forward to? Alex hopes to re-invigorate the gamers’ perception of the crash:

If you watch the first “Superman” on DVD, the director talks about the original version of “Superman” being very camp, very light-hearted. What he wanted to do was get to the heart of it, get to the truth of it. Their buzzword was “verisimilitude.” And they spent all of their time on flying, because if the flying wasn’t right, the movie wouldn’t make any sense. If you didn’t believe Superman was real, then you wouldn’t believe the story, and you wouldn’t understand the end of the film where he has to rewind the earth to save Lois Lane.

So with Burnout, we have to go back to square one. And our verisimilitude is on car crashing. If you don’t believe the crash is real, then it’s not going to frighten you…The first crash you see on PlayStation 3 has got to go way beyond everything you’ve ever seen, beyond anything that we’ve ever done. Because every time we put our game out, people say, “It’s the best crashes ever in a game.” We’ve got to go beyond that now. We have to go beyond a game, and we have to go beyond a game car crash. That’s what all of our work is focused on right now.

While there haven’t been any announcements about when the next-gen Burnout will be arriving, Alex hints that it will be within the next year, saying: “Our goal on Burnout right now is to make it look like a year two PS3 game in year one.”


Freelance journalist and software architect based in Upstate NY. I write for a variety of different places (as you’ll see) -- maybe even for you if you ask nicely.


  1. Bwaahahah! That pitch reminds me of the pitch for Black at E3 2005 where they were all “it’s a shooter, so we decided to go back to square one and redefine the experience of just shooting a gun. you know, if shooting the gun isn’t exciting and fun, then the whole shooter game doesn’t work. And every time we put our game out people say, ‘it’s the best shooting ever in a game’ and that’s what we are focusing on!”

    What came out of it? A solid, but not great, shooter barely anybody remembers.
    Who developed it? Criterion.
    Who made the same damn marketing pitch? That’s right: Alex Ward. (And Craig Sullivan to lesser extent.)

    Really, Mr. Ward should get a new shtick.

  2. Now don’t get me wrong about Burnout. I’m sure that as long as they don’t majorly screw up, it will bring in the 8+/10 reviews and IGN and GameSpot will be gushing about the graphics and crashes and it will sell fairly well, but I don’t expect something mindblowing or paradigm-shifting based on their marketing. 😉

    But to be honest, I think it’s time to drop this franchise and start something else. They are bleeding it dry and according to VGCharts Burnout Revenge sold only about half as much as Burnout Takedown. It’s diminishing returns now and even while the platform jump could work in their favour, I don’t think they will turn this into something worth remembering a few months after release.

    Does it ever show that I don’t like arcade racing games? 😛

  3. Naah, not at all 🙂

    And, yes, the Burnouts have begun to get rather forgettable. Fun, but forgettable. I’m thinking with the next sequel (after this one) they’ll try to do something rather different in some way or another, maybe make the game dark and menacing to contrast its sort of flippant nature now, or (horror of horrors) try to tie it together with some storyline or another.

    That of course will fail miserably and only then they’ll retire the franchise for a few years 🙂

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