Danger Zone Review – Crash and Burn
On paper, Three Fields Entertainment’s Danger Zone seems like a recipe for success. Burnout-style thrills from the developers of the original smash hit? What could possibly go wrong? Unfortunately, this title is a pale imitation of its source material.
Danger Zone Review
Fans of the Burnout series’s Crash mode and its crash junctions will no doubt be familiar with what Danger Zone brings to the table, as the core mechanics are almost exactly the same. Players must drive their car into oncoming traffic, all while trying to cause as much damage as possible. Some levels have multiple lanes of traffic, while others are set on bridges. or have medians Cause enough damage, and you can get a Smashbreaker, which lets you launch your vehicle in a blaze of fiery glory into more hazards. It’s almost like a puzzle game, with money bonuses, intersections, and cars strategically lined up for maximum damage. Rack up enough damage, and you’ll be able to progress to the next level.
It all seems to be in order at first, but things start to feel a little off. Every one of the game’s 20 stages takes place as a simulation in the same concrete underground area, which doesn’t really provide much variety. Some levels may have ramps or different layouts, but they all run together after a while. Menus are basic, there’s no music, there’s no voiceover to speak of, and there’s just no personality to this game. A bit of variety in the form of different locations, cars, or even some blue sky would greatly add to the game. As it stands right now, it just feels a little too low budget, sterile, and safe.
This would be fine if the gameplay held up, but the core mechanics make things kind of weird. There is no ability to boost, reverse, or even change your car, which comes with some slippery controls. There are other little annoyances too, like bottomless pits that instantly end each level and accidents that happen automatically without any intervention. It can feel frustrating at times, especially when you have to do the same level multiple times because of something out of your control.
The entirety of the game can be wrapped up in a few hours, depending on your skill level. There is the ability to go for more damage in each level and get a higher medal, but this game will not keep you playing for weeks to come.
Danger Zone may crib liberal notes from the Burnout series, but its lack of personality and options greatly hinders it in the long run. Those dying to relive days gone by might find some enjoyment here, but those looking for the next coming of Criterion’s classic are better off playing the originals.