If I were to tell you that you could combine your occasional Mario Kart fix with a more mature look and feel, would you be game? Activision sure hopes so, and with their recent release of Blur you’d be hard pressed to find reasons not to. The point is simple, collect as many “lights” (equivalent to trophies) as possible per match by winning races, destroying other cars with an array of power ups, and completing fan challenges. Seems easy enough, right?
Blur introduces itself to you with a set of well organized, fully 3D menus that float over a city backdrop (which you’ll most likely be racing through shortly). Along with a standard intro video to get you up to speed on the dynamics of Blur, you’ll also be greeted by short explanation videos each time you drop into a new race type. Don’t worry though, these only play once and are skipable if you don’t want to sit through the energetic 30 second production. One of the nicer presentation pieces I enjoyed came only after playing Blur for a bit, going outside, and then coming back in to be caught up on my progress via a “last time on Blur” slide show with all of my recent conquests.
In the control department, Blur has done an excellent job of tweaking their stats to make each vehicle handle different on a noticeable level. And not only that, each car handles differently given the type of track you are competing on (street, dirt, mud, etc), adding an extra layer of difficulty by forcing you out of your comfort zone of picking the same car for every race. Controlling any vehicle in Blur doesn’t require an extensive knowledge of driving physics, and can be very forgiving at times, but it definitely requests that you step up your game fairly quick in order to get the best performance and keep winning races. The game comes preloaded with a host of button layouts, but if you’re looking for completely customizable button sets you’ll probably have to seek out the PC version.