Burnout Paradise Game Poster Image

Burnout Paradise



Intense racer where harsh crashes dominate.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Players are encouraged to drive dangerously. You earn rewards for driving in oncoming traffic, nearly missing vehicles or forcing cars to crash.


Some crashes will elicit a cringe, but nothing graphic. This is violence involving machines, not humans.

Not applicable

Songs play in the background, some with edgy lyrics, but they are the kind typically found on the radio.


Advertisements litter the landscape. Diesel and Gillette are among the companies who advertise on billboards, vehicles and other city landmarks.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that reckless driving dominates the action in this game and that it is glorified. Players are rewarded for driving in oncoming traffic, slamming into other vehicles, and creating overall citywide carnage. Parents of new teen drivers might want to consider that research suggests that playing some racing games can increase your willingness to take risks while driving in real life. Collision carnage is shown in great detail, but no person is ever shown injured. Advertising is rampant within this game, as the city is littered with billboards, vehicles, and other signs of sponsorship. This game also features an online component which allows for chat so that kids will be exposed to whatever other online racers care to say. In addition, kids can attach cameras to take photos during the gameplay that can be shared online during the game.

What's it about?

The Burnout franchise has never been about going out for a leisurely drive. Really, only one rule of the road exists: Create mass highway carnage. BURNOUT PARADISE takes Criterion Games' concept a step further, replacing the linear driving campaign with the open road world of Paradise City. Players can navigate a large map, choosing their own path to conquering this large metropolis. Each stoplight in Paradise City represents a different event. Challenges vary from races to road rage, with the latter being an event where you must wreck a specific number of opposing cars. In Stunt Run, you'll speed over ramps and through billboards to rack up points. Each victory earns you points on your license. After completing a certain number of challenges, you'll get an upgrade.

Is it any good?


For kids old enough to know that reckless driving only has a place in video games and not in real life, this game can be an exciting fantasy to explore. Cars are categorized based on speed, strength, and stunt ability. This also determines how to increase their boost meters. Stronger cars, for example, will use an aggression boost meter which rises with overly assertive driving. The natural fallout of this aggressive driving are the explosive crashes. Wrecks look cinematic, as glass shards and chunks of metal shoot across in slow-motion before the full effects of your collision are realized.

Burnout Paradise's greatest achievement is eradicating almost all down time. Load screens and menus are rarely seen. Cars can zip into repair shops and gas stations with no break in action. And if you want to move online, a quick flip of the directional pad takes you to Freeburn Mode. Players attempt to top each other in a variety of small challenges, like farthest jump or most near misses of other vehicles. Multiplayer could have been perfected with a wider array of events and an offline two-player option. But those are small dents in the finish of Burnout Paradise.


Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the appeal of this type of driving game. What makes a title focused on reckless driving so entertaining? How do these compare to the more realistic racing titles? Do you think there is any connection between playing this kind of game and becoming more reckless when driving in real life?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360, PlayStation 3
Available online?Available online
Developer:Electronic Arts
Release date:January 22, 2008
ESRB rating:E10+ for Language and violence.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bymanormyth April 9, 2008

This Game Rocks!!!

I love this game!!! There are a few pauses. In online mode the players can say WHATEVER they want so that is an issue. Also "Girlfriend" by Avril Lavigne is included with the game. Overall it is a great game. The graphice are INSANE. I thinkit is fine for kids 11 and up
Kid, 11 years old September 5, 2010

Welcome to Anti-Driver's Ed.

Burnout Paradise is probably the best of the series. First, it gives the player the option of competition-free 'Freeburning' while not racing (or doing other illicit driving activities such as Road Rage and Stunt Run). This allows the player to cruise around Paradise City, driving in fictional cars (based on real ones, though) and become more familiar with the city so that they can play better in events. The maniacal driving can become very violent-cars can be compacted to half their size, torn in half, and, plainly, disfigured. Fortunately, no human beings drive these cars. They eerily drive themselves, so blood and gore is not an issue. The most important factor is that this game encourages players to slam, crush and obliterate cars in a way that demonstrates a total lack of respect for the other drivers' safety. Paradise should only be given to your kid (or teen) after a thorough discussion of how these intended car crashes (known as Takedowns) are meant to stay in the game. And if they are not convinced, make sure they know that if they attempt to barrel roll off the side of a parking garage, their car will end up as a pile of twisted metal, not the car of a brave daredevil. Burnout Paradise is a fun game, and can be expanded with add-on's from the Xbox LIVE Marketplace or the Playstation Store. Have fun burning through Paradise City in an intensely maniacal fashion!
What other families should know
Too much violence
Kid, 11 years old August 3, 2011

Nothing inappropriate execpt for the ocasianly strong lyrics.

This is a fun racing game, but have severel crash scenes that are incouraged, and inappropriate lyrics. There is one song that has the f word in it, but is barely notible if driving in 3rd person perspective.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism