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G-Police 2
"Attention to detail is amazing but the re-draw distance once again stops this from being a classic." Image Loading...
Developer: Psygnosis
Distributor: Psygnosis
Game Type: Action
Review Date: Sept 99
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Setting the Scene:
      The original G-Police introduced us to our future. It all began in the year 2097 when technology had advanced to the point where humans were able to colonize their solar system. Callisto had been colonized with an aim to extract its great mineral wealth that lay deep below the surface.

War had raged in space as each nation battled for control of the planets that contained the essential minerals. People lost confidence in their governments after the war because of the squandering of Earths mineral resources. Established society was torn apart so the major corporations decided to restore it into a form that was good for business.

Vast domed cities now litter the nearest planets and moons protecting their occupants from the harsh conditions outside while the Corporations reluctantly agreed to fund an independent force to police their territories, G-Police was originally formed to control the colonies within.

Weapons of Justice opens as yet another war reaches it's conclusion. The defeat of the Corporation has left the G-Police in control (although they took a pounding in the process). But for how long? There is civil unrest and crime syndicates are gaining power. It's only a matter of time before civil war breaks out. The marines are on their way, but just what is their Colonel's hidden agenda?

The time has come to return to the world of the G-Police, a future reality where a band of law enforcement officers struggle for order in the skies and down on the city streets.
      G-Police 2: Weapons of Justice is a mission based flight sim heavily biased towards shoot-em-up air/ground combat. It is set in a highly populated true three-dimensional cityscape. The player is provided with a unique opportunity to become a G-Cop and patrol the streets of a virtual city in a series of close air support gunships and, for the first time, heavily armed ground units. With mysteries, sub-plots, and treachery in store, the fate of the Earth lies in the hands of one force.
Sound and Vision:
      G-Police 2 begins with a CG intro using advanced motion-capture technology to provide an opening intro of movie quality. However, following the current trend in Playstation gaming progression through the missions is rewarded with further story segments and campaign briefs using the in-game graphics engine.

Image Loading...The moment you don your G-Police matching crash helmet and riot shield and take to the streets in the heavily h'armed Havoc helicopter it becomes apparent that these living, breathing, high rise cities are truly alive. Citizens appear to go about their everyday business totally oblivious to the dogfights happening above their heads.

The roads and highways are crammed with a wide range of vehicles constantly travelling back and forth. There's red saloons, yellow vans, green trucks, blue pick-ups... On one occasion I was passing through a lengthy tunnel on route to an urgent mission and suddenly came face to face with this gigantic transport machine. I don't know what it was... maybe a mobile warehouse? There was barely enough room to get past therefore I had to reverse all the way back out through the tunnel and wait for it to pass by.

Not only are the roads heavily congested, so are the skies. Apart from the regular appearance of attacking bandits the sheer amount of flying craft would drive an air traffic controller insane. Single shuttles, transport trippers, cargo convoys... even the train system is a flying monorail. Furthermore, the road network fails to remain firmly planted on the ground. Subways and bridges act as detours to heavy industrial sites and flyover's and flypasses sprout from every junction providing a testing obstacle course for the budding pilot at low level.

Streetlights brighten up the sidewalk, which pave the way of the individually designed buildings. Most of these structures rise high into the sky making passing over a rather steep journey. These include office blocks, airports, penitentiaries, power plants, statues... even flashing neon advertising hoardings.

Long continuous tunnels have replaced the warp gates from the original game, which connected each domed city. The fact that each city is contained within a dome actually helps the gameplay and allows you to corner the enemy fighters rather than chase them through endless space. Once tracked down and eliminated the resulting explosion is stunning as the enemy craft first emits a smoke trail, then catches fire, spirals out of control and spectacularly collides with the side of a building, before crashing to the ground in a huge ball of flame.

Image Loading... There are several ways to view the action. The in-cockpit camera is probably the most suitable but an out-of-craft view will need to be used when you take part in a bombing mission as this is the only way you can accurately position your laser.

Unfortunately all of this detail is not without penalties as the redraw distance is once again very short. A common problem in the original game occurred when flying along with your mind on the mission, a multi-story building would suddenly appear right before your very eyes. To counteract this problem the developers have included an ingenious early warning system. Rather than the horizon being shrouded in total darkness one second, and then a building pops-up the next, each structure in the distance has been roughly outlined to offer advanced notice of the their upcoming position. In most instances this assists the gameplay, but generally it will leave you wishing that the Playstation 2 was already here.
      G-Police 2, Weapons of Justice now puts the player in control of several air and land vehicles each of which adds a whole new style of play.

Image Loading...As a recruit of the G-Police organization you must once again pilot the Havoc, a highly maneuverable vector thrust gunship much like the helicopter gunships of today. The Havoc is quickly replaced by the updated Venom helicopter, which is faster, sleeker and handles like a dream. The Venom's agility makes it ideal for the airborne policing of urban areas, full of high-rise blocks and skyscrapers.

Successfully progressing through the missions offers the first opportunity to take to the streets of Callisto in land based vehicles. The Rhino is an armor-plated car packed with a unique set of weaponry more suited to ground based fighting. It features turbo boost injection and an ultra responsive hand brake to assist high speed cornering. Moving further into the game the introduction of the Raptor, a high tech mech warrior, further enhances gameplay. Stick with the plot through to the twenty-fifth mission and the space fighter Corsair, packed with super sonic missiles, becomes available. Woopeee!

Image Loading... Getting into the game couldn't be easier. The training level has been replaced with an in-flight help system; therefore it's straight into the thick of the action... learning as you go. Control of the craft has now been greatly simplified, which was a major gripe in the first game. It retains the subtleties of the original, while proving more responsive and easier to grasp. Also, the analog sticks don't seem so ultra-sensitive allowing the player to feel in total control most of the time.

Missions include reconnaissance, protection, high action battles and city patrols. Advancing through the game the tasks become more difficult but to counteract this weapons are upgraded to stunning proportions. The most important asset is your wingman who accompanies you on each mission. Take care not to shoot him out of the sky, so check that each target has a red border and not a blue one. Your computer-controlled assistant will independently take out targets but you have the facility to select a target for him on your weapons HUD. Correct use of your wingman is essential during later missions.

Image Loading...Many favorite weapons have been retained from the first game with a few devastating additions. Weapons are divided into primary and secondary categories. Primaries are guns and lasers. Secondary are bombs and missiles. An interesting little weapon is the EPP, which is used to paralyze and disable a vehicles avionics and computer system. These are particularly useful when chasing a fast moving road vehicles. There's the usual homing missiles, mortars and laser guided cluster bombs for getting rid of a whole bunch of things that move... and some things that don't, but it's the specials that offer the most fun. The Gemini involves two missiles being launched in a V-formation therefore doubling the chances of striking the target. Vindicator rockets can identify civilian and G-Police vehicles avoiding own goal casualties. The Starburst is one of my favorites. It is made up of eight auto tracking missiles that scan the area for up to eight individual targets... ideal when being attacked by multiple bandits. Should there only be a single target within range then all eight will lock onto the poor beggar in sight and it's 'Goodnight Vienna'. KABOOOM! (×8). If the action becomes a little to hot for your liking you can always turn tail and shake off those chasing enemies by weaving between buildings, ducking under bridges and cutting through subways.
Game Options:
      This is a single disk game for 1 Player. It is compatible with the standard (digital) joypad and the dual shock (analog) joypad. Games can be saved via memory card (1 block per save).

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Staff Opinions  
Martin: "Attention to detail is amazing but the re-draw distance once again stops this from being a classic. Eventually this is forgotten, especially when eight enemy craft are buzzing around your tail.

Some of the missions were a little short, perhaps a few breaks between tasks would have allowed the streets to be patrolled and some of the splendid scenery to be taken in.

In the first game I always remember wishing that I could travel on the roads. Now you get the chance with the Rhino and the Rapter. The timing of their introduction is just at the point where flying the helicopter is becoming monotonous ."
Graphics: 14/20
Playability: 48/50
Sound: 8/10
Lastability: 18/20
Overall: 88%
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