When we first learned that Burnout Paradise was breaking free of the standard racer mold and implementing a very GTA-ish feature, we admit to being slightly concerned. Not only did we question how far the developers would go in creating this free-roaming world, but we also didn't want it to be at the expense of the actual racing. But in looking at the full map, pictured here for all to see, we have to realize something- that damn thing is gigantic (source-Kotaku).
If you've played the demo, you're probably familiar with the very small area over by the beach. But look at the rest. We're not sure what kind of scale they're using, here, but it almost doesn't matter…it could take a very, very long time to explore Paradise City, which could indicate the perfect blend of racing and adventure. Given the map's size, though, we do have one very important question: will it be truly open-ended, like the map in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas , or are we looking at something like Grand Theft Auto III , where we have to unlock three separate sections as we progress? In other words, how much of this is true freedom, and how much is freedom masquerading as more linearity?
We certainly don't want to imply this idea isn't a good one – that map is awesome – but perhaps the team will only let you access certain areas once you've completed certain events. We wouldn't be surprised to see it. While you consider, though, make sure you add Burnout Paradise to your must-have list for 2008.
Related Game(s): Burnout Paradise