Burnout: Championship Drag Racing
Bethesda brings to vivid life all the fun and action of racing in a straight line. On top of that, they add the potential for endless fiddling and customization. The result is a superb game for drag race enthusiasts and closet motor-heads alike. Basically, the game consists of a tinkering stage and a racing stage. In the tinkering stage you can choose from multiple chassis (the 1932 Ford Roadster is my personal favorite), and customize the engine, transmission, wing, tires and suspension with more options than I truthfully know what to do with. Once your car is assembled, it's off to the track to prove who has the beefiest car and fastest reflexes. You can make practice runs, make a single race on a number of tracks, compete in a full-blown circuit, or try your hand against your buddy over the Internet, LAN, or modem line.
Gameplay, Controls, Interface
The only complaints I have about this game, unfortunately, are fundamental to its enjoyment. Basically, the game is long on tedium and short on action. For instance, the most difficult skill you must acquire is how to line up the car at the starting line. It takes forever unless you have it done automatically. Once you finally get lined up, the race is over before you know it. The only skill you need to have in driving is starting off quickly and keeping the car from drifting to the right.
I have never seen Bethesda's X-engine look better. The cars are beautiful and fun to look at. The smoke rising from the burnout clouds your view as it passes by. The parachutes flap realistically behind the dragsters. The spectators and pit crew on the sidelines are flat, unanimated, bitmaps, but that doesn't really detract at all. Quite simply, the game is gorgeous, particularly on a 3Dfx card.
The sound is also top-notch. The cars roar and the wheels squeal convincingly. The crowd cheers you on and that's about it, but it sounds good. The music for the intro is very fun as well.
Minimum requirements for the game are listed as a Pentium 75, 256 color VGA with 3Dfx strongly recommended on the box. It requires a double-speed CD-ROM drive, 16 MB RAM and 70 MB of disk space. It is apparently a DOS game, so you must have one of the standard audio cards (SoundBlaster family, Pro Audio Spectrum, Gravis Ultrasound, Ensoniq Soundscape, or their compatibles).
Documentation is very good. I learned more than I think I'll ever need to know about drag racing by reading the manual. Not only do they have the standard installation instruction, menu labels, troubleshooting index, and obligatory addendum; they provide details on what drag racing is and how it is done in real life (which applies directly to the game -- wow!). It also has a glossary of drag racing terms from break-out to wheelie bars. I can't wait to use the phrase "killing the tree" in a sentence.
While this game has high polish and detail, I would recommend it to only the most avid drag-racing fans or someone who loves to tinker with cars. Most of its enjoyment, like any simulation, comes from already being interested in and familiar with the simulated craft. The actual racing isn't that fun. Buy Burnout only if you love cars or drag racing.
Download Burnout: Championship Drag Racing
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP