I typically do not like driving games, I like them Mario Karts, F-Zero, Motorstorm, Excite Bike and Excite Truck (still not sure about Excitebots). I even liked Need for Speed Prostreet despite all the hate out there for it. My favorite Driving game of all is Crazy Taxi; it’s not a racing game but that maybe the reason I like it so much. I like Crazy Taxi so much I bought a Dreamcast to play it because that probably would have been cheaper for me.
What does that have to do with Burnout Paradise? Burnout is extremely fun, but more so is perfect example of how to support a game. They have practically adopted the Valve protocol for Burnout Paradise. There are so many add-ons to this game, most of which are free. New vehicles, new vehicle types, and coming soon is a new area (an entire island built for performing stunts) and new mode called Cops and Robbers.
For a game that came out in January of 2008 the fact that they are still supporting is impressive. Where some new iterations of franchises come out every year. Burnout Paradise is still getting new content, it’s becoming more that just a game, going beyond the franchise, and becoming a genre of it’s own. What are the possibilities of this kind of game support?
For one you keep people coming back to your game if they even leave it. Team Fortress, a Valve game, came out originally in October of 2007 and there is still official releases of new content for it.
You are able to keep your online player base together. Need for Speed Prostreet had a great online system, they were supporting new car updates, new courses, and having tournaments, but rather then expanding upon an existing audience and possibly bringing in the people that may have not liked Prostreet initially by maybe adding and “open world” area for people to drive around, or adding a Cops and Robbers mode they release Need for Speed Undercover which seems to be even less popular and has further hurt the series. The same thing is happening with Madden, Call of Duties, and will likely happen to Little Big Planet when Little Big Planet 2 comes out.
Best of all a constant flow of new content gives the ability to reinvent the game. Burnout Paradise has already altered the physics of the game to compensate for the rocket car, and who knows how much the Cops and Robber will deviate from the existing game play. What would stop Criterion from making an add-on that throws pedestrians on the sidewalks and adds a Crazy Taxi mode into game? I guess Sega would, but then again it could be called something different.