Memory Pak: If failing Burnout is wrong, then I don’t want to be right

Exhausted Dominator
Image: Criterion / EA

Happy birthday, GameCube! Twenty years have passed since your beautiful thick indigo form graced our TV stands, and we were all introduced to that. beedle-deedle-deedle-deedle-beedle-deedle-beedly-beep, BLUMP. You know who i mean.

The GameCube catalog is so stellar that I have already written several features about its games, from my favorite game, Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, to the grim realities of Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life. But there are still plenty of other games to talk about! Luigi’s Mansion! Super Mario Sunshine! The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker!

But I’m not here to talk about Nintendo’s stellar premium Cube games. Oh no. We have a lot of time for that. I’m here to talk about BURNOUT.

Burnout was originally released by British studio Criterion on the PS2 in 2001, and arrived on the GameCube the following year, bringing its car racing mayhem and crash simulation to Nintendo audiences for the first time (although later installments of the series they would avoid Nintendo consoles entirely). But, for that bright summer of 2002, my little brother and I spent hours playing Burnout on the glorious GameCube controller. But we didn’t play it the way we were supposed to, and it turns out that was the best way to play it.

You see, Burnout is a racing game at heart. You can race with other cars and try to beat them to the finish line. But that is bored. What was special about Burnout was the destruction: every time you crashed, the game would tell you how much the crash would cost you. I’m not sure how they solved it – does the cost include damages? Sure? Trips to the hospital? It is not very clear, but it does not matter. What matters is the emotion her.

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Exhaustion would give you a “boost” if you did dangerous things, like driving on the wrong side of the road or nearly losing other cars. Was incentivized To make you drive like a knob And I did it. I perfected the turn to the opposite side of the road and played chicken with cars, trucks, and tankers to get that momentum all the way. Then I’d shoot it down, aiming not for the finish line but for my ultimate goal: as many fuel tankers as I could reach at once.

We quickly realized that the best place to pile up the costliest accident was just before the underground tunnel, and if we could detour onto five tanker trucks, even better. The trick was to make the tanker trucks roll sideways, so that all the cars piled up in the fiery hell and added to the growing pile of dollars that we were expected to pay. We averaged around $ 125,000, which is honestly not that bad for the amount of Butcher shop we cause.