PS3 vs. Xbox 360 ports: The cold, hard truth

BURNOUT PARADISE

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Control: Differences in control between the two versions of Burnout Paradise largely come down to preference. The game is incredibly responsive and tight with its controls. The Xbox 360 controller's triggers feel better for acceleration than the L2/R2 buttons on a Sixaxis, but really, it's a subjective point. You simply won't find any gaps between the two games here.

Graphics: As with the controls, you'll be hard-pressed to denote any significant graphical distinctions between the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions of Burnout Paradise. EA Criterion has done a bang up job keeping the two games even visually. Both consoles squeeze out a fantastic 60 frames-per-second and the detailing on vehicles, buildings, and environment in general is superb.

Load times: Burnout Paradise begins to show favor for PlayStation 3 when clocking its loading times. Both versions require a lengthy initial boot up upon entering the disc into either console, but it's slightly longer on Xbox 360. Even more, there's a split second longer of a wait on Xbox 360 between hitting the triggers to enter an event and it actually beginning. To be certain, we're nitpicking because the game does well in keeping things seamless. But in the end, the PlayStation 3 version is just a bit snappier.

Online integration: Surprisingly, the PlayStation 3 version of Burnout Paradise leads its Xbox 360 counterpart. How is that possible given the might of Xbox Live? A cleaner interface, easier access to online features, and smoother performance online afford PlayStation 3 the edge. Dedicated servers ensure stability during multiplayer races; moreover, the game was optimised for the console, so it just runs better on it when playing online. Alex Ward, head of EA Criterion, has long touted the company's love affair with the open-ended PlayStation Network and it definitely shows.

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EDGE: PlayStation 3

With controls, graphics, and loading times nearly identical between the two consoles, Burnout Paradise flips a bitch with superior online integration on PlayStation 3. It's a shock, to be sure, given the dominance of Xbox Live over online gameplay; however, dedicated servers and generally smoother online performance means the PlayStation 3 takes pole position.

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Tracy Erickson

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