Blur is insane. Blur is fast. Blur is gorgeous.
Blur is a racing game released in 2010, and from the very start it is clear that it won’t be a regular racing experience. It is commonly reffered to as being Mario Kart with real cars, and it delivers as such. Races are scattered with powerups, and the entire game is a flurry of neon and bright lights, with explosions and hectic sprints to the finishing line.
How it works.
The story mode is broken down into rivals and their challenges, much in the style of Need for Speed: Most Wanted. You work your way through a hierarcy of drivers, with a progressive increase in the quality of the cars you use in events. These events are split up into variations of the standard race style, with checkpoint, time trial and destruction races, where you win and complete various tasks which add up to complete ‘rival demands’. Once all of these demands are satisfied, you get to verse a boss character, and upon winning you recieve their car to use in further events.
The progression system serves it’s purpose as both encouraging and rewarding. It encourages players to continue through the game by unlocking levels before the previous has been fully completed. The rival demands can be a little bit annoying, especially towards the latter half of the game when you start going out of your way to fufill demands. Most of these are centered around the use and manipulation of powerups and destruction of other racers during events. The powerups themselves are all of the conventional types that you would imagine for this kind of game, very similar to Wipeout or Mario Kart. Bullets, missiles, AOE repel attack, boosts and a few more, unfortunatly, none of them feel too inspired, which is a shame given the nature of the game. There was definetly a potential for more creative and absurd powerups, and I would have loved to see them in this game. However, the system does allow most powerups to be launched in either front of the car for aggression, or behind for defence, and the control that this can allow over the race positions is quite nice, and definetly encourages prioritisation in the use of powerups.
Multiplayer is as fun as you could possibly imagine, although at the time of writing 2 years after release, the community has gone fairly quiet. I’m sure that at release, multiplayer was a solid time investment, but not today, unless you and a couple of mates all are playing in the same house of course, in which case I can only imagine it would be a blast.
The soundtrack has it’s ups and downs as well, with some songs playing at just the right moment, while others may seem a little out of place in certain areas. It’s a bit hit and miss, however it does nothing to detract from the gameplay and wil have little effect on the overall experience.
Is it worth the time?
If you have a weekend free and don’t know what to play, Blur is definetly worth a look. The ‘Story’ mode can be beaten in aroun 8-10 hours, however the longevity is really found in the player’s enjoyment, which will dictate how long they continue with Blur after they beat the story mode. It must also be mentioned that the car choice in the game isn’t excellent, and the stats did little to emphasize the specifics of a car. Cars can be either catagorised as ‘Grippy’ or ‘Drifty’ , and some of these labels do not suit the cars that they describe, however, given the arcade nature of the game, it is a little too optimistic to expect perfect handling from all of the cars. As long as you go into Blur looking for a arcade racer, you will not be dissappointed. Those looking for more of a challenge or realism of any sort should probably look elsewhere.