The Starburst look can be achieved, or avoided, by adjusting your aperture.
In a scene like this shot of the New Orleans riverfront my aperture was at f/25, an extreme setting for most circumstances, but perfect for what I intended for this shot. I shot this on a tripod with the shutter set at 6 seconds. I wanted to smooth over the river and crank up those f-stops. In other shots from this evening, set at f/3.2 with the shutter at 1/80, the street lights just looked like street lights.
With instant playback on your camera's LED screen you can try different combinations of exposure settings until you get what you want.
Woldenberg Park, on the New Orleans riverfront