Burnout Dominator - PS2 review

You racing obsessed gamers have no doubt been playing Burnout for years now. Famed for its fast and frenetic racing action, the series has always been king for driving fans who prefer something a little different from straight racing.

Packing a handy boost meter that’s upped via dangerous driving, the aim is to drive down the wrong side of the road, barely missing head on collisions with huge car smashing trucks.

The previous game – Burnout Takedown – was more obsessed with multiple pile ups, but Dominator claims to hark back to the series’ racing roots. Can it still cut it with the big boys?

Fans of the series will be right at home with Dominator. Its unique brand of risk versus reward racing will still make the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end as you speedily weave through oncoming traffic. You don’t learn this at driving school that’s for sure.

If you’re looking for thrills, you’ll find them right here. Simply keeping your foot down on the wrong side of the road will get your heart pumping and boost meter ticking over. As for jumping twenty feet in the air, well, that’ll probably give you a cardiac arrest.

When your boost turns blue its time to unleash the full power of your mighty vehicle. Simply hold down the button for the length of time it takes for the bar to completely disappear and you’ll soon reach ridiculously over the top speeds.

Racing along at 150mph doesn’t allow you to neglect your other dangerous driving duties though. A second meter slowly fills as the first is being used up, allowing you to let rip pretty much continually. Work the two meters effectively and you’ll be well on your way to winning races.

Dominator’s single player career mode plays out just as before with a long line of challenges awaiting you. Most are straight races, but there’s the odd "Maniac" task that awards points for driving as if you’re invulnerable. Just call us Richard Hammond.

The career mode won’t last you too long, but that’s where the multiplayer kicks in. Plug in a few more D pads and get ready for the fastest and most frenetic multiplayer racing action available on PS2. Sadly there’s no online options, so Billy No Mates will miss out on Dominator’s biggest selling point.

The visuals continue to impress. Everything runs as smooth as silk and we didn’t see a single stuttering frame. It’s not next gen by any means, but it’ll do until the PS3’s price falls to something closer to reasonable.

Verdict

There’s one downside to Dominator for us. It lacks the mega pile up Crash Mode that allowed you to cause millions of pounds worth of virtual damage. If this sounds like your bag, go for the previous game in the series.

For everyone sticking with the PS2 as their main home console, this is the best racer currently on offer. But if you’re already playing the likes of MotorStorm and Ridge Racer 7, give this a miss and wait for the next gen sequel.