Review by Cliq
"Not quite the same game as Grand Theft Auto 1."
Grand Theft Auto is a pretty well-known game; known in particular for it's suprisingly graphic concept and originality. Grand Theft Auto 1 (or GTA1, for short), first released on the PC, and was then ported over to the PlayStation. If you had played the PC version of this great game before trying the PSX version, you were well aware of the vast differences, including control issues and slowdown.
Grand Theft Auto 2 (GTA2) is a different story. This time, the game was released at the same time on both platforms. Unlike it's little brother, GTA2 on the PlayStation is suprisingly good.
DMA had some help from Rockstar in making this game have such a nice layout and BADASS intro FMV. The interface is improved and simple.
Many people who reviewed GTA2 felt the need to bag on the graphics, but I feel that there's no need to. Grand Theft Auto is played from a birds-eye view, and minimizes detail. The graphics in GTA1 for PlayStation were admittedly bad, but have been vastly improved in GTA2. The weapons look good, especially the lightning gun and the flamethrower. Vehicle explosions are no longer bland and boring.
The sound ("radio") has been improved from the CD-audio tracks found in GTA1. You'll now be tricked into thinking you are REALLY listening to your radio, when you jack a car and find out that the person had their radio on the AM, listening to some talk radio station. Although the limitations of a CD have kept the variety of radio to a minimum, it's still really cool. The sound effects haven't changed much, but are still up-to-par.
If you ask me, I prefer the PlayStation's control on GTA2 over the PC version. The vehicles in GTA2 handle MUCH differently compared to GTA1, and may take some time to get used to. Faster cars skid sharper, while slower cars aren't even worth stealing. Thanks to the many buttons on a PlayStation controller, you can use any button you want for whatever you want.
This is where the game lacks. In GTA1, you were supposed to find pay phones around town and do the mob's dirty work for them. In GTA2, there are 3 rivaling gangs per level, and you compete with all three of them at the same time. For example, if you run over 5 gangsters of Gang A, you're respect meter for Gang A goes down... but will rise in Gang C. Although it may seem like a good concept, all it does is add to the frustration and impossibility of the game. Instead of having one arrow order you around towns all the time, you now have THREE frustrating arrows. Sometimes, the arrows will lead you to a pointless pay phone in the middle of nowhere that just tells you that "This color points you to Gang A's pay phones". It's HARD to find the right pay phones in this game. Saving your game is now more annoying than ever, you need to find one of the two churches in the game to save. Without the map (which comes packaged with GTA2), you are virtually screwed.
Lasting Appeal: 7
Lots of missions to fulfill, but replayability suffers due to the repetition of missions. Be sure to save your game often if you want to feel interested enough to play for more than 30 minutes.
Although the game hasn't reached "perfection" status (yet), it's getting there. The game still showcases many faults, like "WHY did they DO that?!". Expect to be screaming that phrase many times while playing this game. Other than that, this is a game that shouldn't be overlooked; especially if you haven't played GTA1.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 11/01/99, Updated 11/01/99
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