First things first, Burners were not what I originally thought of when I wanted "advanced" lvl4s. But they are darn close. This post goes through my concept of what small ship mission content could look like; at the time I had no idea that Burners were on the table with CCP.
I point this out because the content isn't what I'd secretly been longing for; CCP didn't fulfill all my hopes and dreams with this content, and I don't think of myself as a Burner Fanboy.
Anyway - Why do I like Burners?
1. The Mechanics. I like to dissect the mechanics of the content and understand the encounter thoroughly. I take a good bit of pride in not only knowing what to expect, but also vigilant enough to react properly when the game throws you a wrinkle. I like to know the content well enough to come up with my own twist on the ship fits and not just use what's "accepted."
While "the mechanics" are true for all lvl4 content, the time is long gone when vanilla lvl4s required much thinking about how to approach a specific encounter. Most of us fly omni-tanked ships capable of doing any and all vanilla lvl4s that are offered, with full pocket aggro, and (at most) an ammo change between missions. The margin of success with Burners are such that the Mechanics still matter.
2. The Rush. The first several Burners I completed resulted in me sitting at the desk with shaking hands and a sweaty brow. The new mechanics, new ships, and challenging content really got me. With dozens and dozens of Burners now under my belt, this is no longer the case (tho I am FAR from complacent about Burners). I still take a deep breath and cry TALLYHO when I drop into the pocket.
3. The Familiarity. This is a more recent phenomenon. There are now so many Burners that I don't see some of the variants all that often. At this point, it's like seeing an old friend when some of them pop into queue. I get to dust off a ship I haven't flown in weeks/months and knock the cobwebs off my knowledge about the encounter ... and hope that nothing drastic has been changed in the patches since I last ran it.
What's Playing: Static-X, Wisconsin Death Trip, December