Scheduled release date:
Fall 2005

One of the first games I played when I hit the show floor was Burnout Legends, for the PSP. A hybrid of the first three games, Legends incorporates all the best features of the originals, and has some of the best visuals seen on the PSP to date.

Legends will have a total of nine gameplay modes, including Crash, Pursuit, Burning Lap, Road Rage, Eliminator, Race, Time Attack, Legends Face-Off and Legends GP. I got some extensive playtime with the game's Takedown mode, and am happy to report that it feels just like it did in Burnout 3. The framerate is crisp, the sense of speed is tremendous, the car models look great, and the backgrounds sport a surprising amount of detail. You can select from a large amount of vehicles, including sports cars, muscle cars, and a few different police cars. I raced the downtown track, and after spending about one minute adjusting to the different feel of the PSP's analog stick, went on to take down 28 cars before totaling my car. All of the traditional methods of taking out opponents are present, and the crash cam appears after a crash to show you the carnage in detail.

Legends will feature wireless multiplayer, and modes will include race, crash, pursuit and road rage modes. In addition, each copy of Burnout Legends ships randomly with 5 of 25 unlockable cars. The additional 20 can only be collected by playing friends in WiFi challenges. In a nice bonus for cheap gamers, you can upload a level of Burnout Legends to a friend's PSP so you can both play – from just one UMD.

The layout of the game feels very similar to the PS2 version of Burnout 3, and it appears to have the same method of unlocking courses and cars. The load times were pretty fast, but there were no EA Trax yet, so they could get a bit longer. Burnout Legends is a ways off, but it's looking fantastic, and is a guaranteed hit in the making. No release date has been given yet, but the version seems to be pretty far along, so it shouldn't be a terribly long wait.