Danger Zone might look familiar, any fans of the fantastic Burnout Crash junctions will find their spider-senses tingling as it’s time once again to throw your car off a jump into a busy motorway in the hope of causing as much damage as possible.
While not associated with Burnout directly, there’s certainly more than meets the eye as Danger Zone comes from Three Fields Entertainment, former co-founders and a developer of Criterion games where Burnout all started before EA got their hands on it.
We’ve already seen Dangerous Golf from Three Fields and while it met mixed results considering it was a golf game mixed with Burnout style destruction, it was certainly a stepping stone for the new venture.
Danger Zone is much more as you’d expect from former Burnout Staff, cars, lots of cars, explosions, crashes and enough slow motion smashes to get you all giddy at throwing your car off a jump once again.
Set out as a testing area, the track is laid out in front of you as you take control of a vehicle and head towards whatever busy intersection lies before you.
On each course, you’ll have a set number of smashes required to get your initial Smashbreaker which will allow you to slow down time and cause an explosion which throws your car into the air allowing you to aim towards other vehicles or tokens.
you’ll fine bronze, silver and gold tokens as well as Smashbreaker tokens which will instantly refill your ability to prolong the destruction..
You’ll find plenty of cars to smash into, but unfortunately your surroundings remain the same crash-test area, leaving the environment feeling somewhat sparse, however there’s some good news as Danger Zone is very much a work in progress, and just as we’ve already seen since the PS4 launch, The Xbox One release brings with it 12 new levels taking the total to 32.
Already Three Fields have put down a road map of future content including Native 4K when the Xbox One X launches, as well as another 6 new levels in November with the 12 Xbox launch exclusive levels finally releasing on other systems in December.
It’s great to see such transparency from the developer and we’re certainly looking forward to the 4K eye candy in November.
Graphically Danger Zone obviously carries quite a familiar feel, strong, sturdy cars are turned to scrap heaps of twisted and scorched metal, explosions send cars into oncoming trucks and the level of destruction is a strong reminder of how fun it is to blow cars up rather than trying to keep them pristine round every corner.
Sadly there’s a few areas that could do with a little more attention to detail, but the things that matter most, (the cars) are well made and look just as battered as you’d hope if you drove down the wrong way of a busy motorway.
There’s not much that could be deemed as game breaking, but being unable to change the view, means you’ll occasionally need a little guesswork to hitting early tokens before you’re smash breakers give you the right-stick control to swing the camera around you.
Unfortunately it’s not all positive, audio is an area of gaming which has impressed me more and more over the last few years, but Danger Zone seems to be back in the 80′ with no in-game music, very little ambient noise and only the hum of your engine to fill your ears before or after the crashes and smashes take center stage. It’s quite sad to see a game rely so heavily on the core mechanic which in this case is crashing, and offer so little outside of the inevitable smashes.
You’ll find leaderboards, but while a ‘good run’ will get you to the next level, you’ll be committed to hitting every single token to challenge leaderboard scores due to the hefty $5,000,000 Grand slam bonus for collecting each token, if scores where into the hundreds of millions, it wouldn’t be as noticeable, but this bonus will often make up well over 25% of your final score, meaning it’s an unfortunate certainty which limits the options on how to tackle the junction ahead.
Bottom Line :
While very light on bells and whistles Danger Zone manages to offer just enough content to warrant the £11.99 price tag, making it easy to recommend to fans of Burnout’s Crash junction mode or even Three Fields previous game Dangerous Golf.
Gameplay : 7.5
Graphics : 7.5
Sound : 6.5
Story : 7
Value : 8
Overall : 7.3 / 10