Product Type: Activision PS3 games
Newest Review: ... bottom of the leader board so you can slow down the first 3 racers When i brought the game home i enjoyed the burnout like carnage that c... more
Member Name: Kary
Advantages: Good multiplayer, easy to pick up
Disadvantages: Single player could be better
Blur is not just the name of this fast paced racing game but also the outline of your competitors as you blast and boost your way past them. Out on the PS3, Xbox and PC access to the game is quite easy to pick up, my copy is on the PlayStation 3. The basic premise of this game, like all racing game, is to get over the finish line first, well so you think, but this is not always the case. Your objective is to win and collect fans buy completing certain targets.
One area in which Blur is great is that it has a variety of game modes.
Races: This one is simple, you have to come first over a varying number of laps that are dependent on the course length etc, you can also select to do this in hardcore mode which means no weapons and just all out racing. This is the classic racing experience and is available for both single and multi-player and is great fun for all the family.
Checkpoints: In this mode you have to get to the checkpoint before the time runs out with the added twist of having to try to collect either time bonuses or speed boosts to help you along the way, this can be really testing later o in the game when you have to use the right racing line and the right speed to basically collect a continuous supply of time bonuses in order to complete the level. To complete single player you will have to do these, they are good fun and in order to test you to the max it is not a simple case of just finishing the checkpoints, the quicker you finish the better.
Destruction Races: I guess from the title you can tell the object of these races is to destroy your opponents before the time runs out. This mode however is not as simple as destroying a set number of opponents, your weapons are limited to the triple shot gun (see later) and you actually have to reach a target of destruction , the more destruction, the more time you have to wreak havoc.
One on One Races: You vs your opponent one on one, first to the finish or to destroy the wins, simples.
All of the above modes will be taking place on a moderate number of tracks in total there are around 30 tracks and the environment changes. The tracks are linked to various locations, London, Brighton (woo my home town) and Barcelona spring to mind but there are 14 different cities used in all. These locations are supposed to show recognisable streets and landmarks, to be honest I can't really say that I have noticed them as I have been far too busy racing. The tracks do offer good variety though, there are really fast paced tracks, some with off road sections and some with water up to your knees. I think there are a sufficient number of tracks to keep you interested but in terms of length and number there are so few compared to the likes of Gran Turismo 5. Each track has a fan run, this is where you go through a mark and then have to hit a load of marks in order to obtain a load of fan points, these are normally really tricky as you need to finish them in time and also still need to finish the race in a good position for it count meaning that you can't let it compromise your race position either.
One of the most important factors is of course your car, you can't win a race if you are ½ the pace of everyone else. Blur has a good selection of cars to choose from, these include cars by Dodge, Ford, Nissan, Audi, Toyota, BMW, Aston Martin and Lotus. The cars are given ratings based on several of their characteristics these are Speed, Acceleration, Grip and Difficulty, my favourite so far is probably the Dodge Viper ACR, not sure why as it is not the fastest or easiest to drive yet I seem to do quite well when I using this car, just luck I guess. They also vary in their overall health, this can be a big factor as when you run out you lose a lot of time.
One of the rarer features of Blur is the addition of weapons, one that I have only seen in Wipeout on the PlayStation 3. Blur has a good selection of weapons with a range of functions. You pick these power boosts up by driving through the symbol on the track, they are normally lined up side by side so you need to tactically pick which one you want.
Triple Shot: This gives you three shots to either fire at the car in front, or if you are winning it is possible to fire these backwards. This is a standard weapon and is good to use in most situations but it is far from the best power up to use in most situations.
Barge: This weapon causes a powerful wave to be emitted from your car, this means that cars that are near you are swept off course, personally this weapon is a bit lame but I do find it annoying when it is used on me as if you are thrust into a wall you can lose so many places it is silly. If timed right this can also be very handy to reflect a shunt...
Shunt: This is one of my favourite to use and I hate to be hit with it. You fire a projectile either forwards or backwards and it will target the nearest racer and cause them to flip up in the air and lose a lot of health.
Nitro: This is a simple pick up that gives you a massive boost of speed, it can also be used in an alternative way, which I think is supposed to be used when going round a corner but to be honest I haven't really got the knack of using it that way.
Shield: Again another simple one, this causes you to have a shield so that weapons and bumps do not harm your car, this can be useful if your health is low and you are waiting to pick up a...
Repair : This one heals your car so that you don't run out of health.
Lightning: This causes bolts of lightning to appear in front of the leader and hitting these will cause them to slow down, again useful but be weary of using it when you are in the lead as well this is a stupid move.
In all you are allowed to store 3 weapons and you can chuck them, this can be useful as if you are in the lead then you need to try to store a shield (protects against hits or lightning) or a boost or a barge to try and stop shunts etc etc.
The game controls are fairly simple, you have accelerate, brake, use weapon etc making the game very easy even for people like my partner who don't really know how to play games at all, in fact they even win sometimes. Racing in general varies in difficulty and is greatly dependent on the car that you have, to little grip on the wrong track and no matter how good you are you are going to find it very hard to win, luckily with each race you get a choice of cars (one on ones excluded.
Gameplay in Single Player mode is fairly good if not a little bit repetitive at time. You basically have to earn stars by completing event and this then unlocks the next set of challenges which then means you can earn enough to unlock the next one. In order to get enough to unlock the next part you will need to complete a certain number of challenges, interestingly these are not just as simple as completing the race events etc but can also include completing one such as a checkpoint race with a certain amount of time to spare or even goes as far as having to shunt a car into the water, which by the way is very very hard and can on occasion spoil the game. For example to get to the boss (oh yeah each section has a boss that earns you lots of points) you have to complete the above challenge of shunting a car into the water, this has to be done within that bosses set of events of which there are 2 tracks that contain water and each contains about 2 points where you can actually hit them into the water but this depends on you not being in the lead or there is no car to hit and also being in a position where you can actually hit the car and you can start to appreciate just how annoying some of these tasks can be. However the single player mode is still of interest to me and I have been playing this for quite a while, the other half is not doing quite as well as me but I think it is a credit to the game that it was even attempted as it is the first time they have even tried :-) I think this could be improved by adding some variability and maybe making it so you don't have to achieve all of the objectives to reach the boss because some of them are just silly.
Personally I think that this game is really good for multi-player purposes and is a favourite for when the friends are over. I have tried this with up to 4 players and the screen is split so that you can all see easily (even when you are miles behind). You get a choice of 2 options after each event which you then vote on, a tally of the score is kept going so you can play for hours and still tease the others knowing full well that you are miles in front, both in the race and overall. I don't think that the all-out racing without weapons is anywhere near as much fun as playing with the weapons as this adds an element of unpredictability and allows even complete novices to win the odd race.
The graphics on Blur may not be up to the standards of say Gran Turismo but they are very good and very clearly up for the task of being on a PS3, it looks really good, albeit in my case on a 22inch TV, the surroundings are clear and for a racing game not a simulation the graphics are, at least in my eyes better than required.
The game comes in a standard PS3 case with a couple of cars on the front, you get the full instructions and it is a game worth having on your shelf.
The Competition for this game for me can only come from games that I have played these are Wipeout, Burnout and Gran Turismo 5. Wipeout matches it in terms of weapons but I would say that Blur is much easier for novices to pick up, Burnout is as much fun but the PS3 game lacks the local multi-player mode whilst Gran Turismo 5 is for proper racers and is not the kind of game that most of my mates would want be whipping out when they come for a visit.
One of the really good things about this game for me was the price, with many PS3 games retailing now for around £40 (such as Gran Turismo 5) this was under £15 before Xmas (£13.99 I think) and is actually still under £15 on Amazon, which for a PS3 game of this quality is an amazing price
This is a great game that even novices can pick up and get to grips with in 10minutes, this along with the multi-player mode makes it a great game to play with friends, single player mode can be frustrating though.
Summary: Great game overall 5/5
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