Whatever you do, don't repaint the stunner!
No, it is not a gun, it is stunner. A big orange stunner (sure it is). With it, you must save Virtua City from lots of gangsters . . . again.
Following the success of the original Virtua Cop, the programmers at Sega have followed it up with, you guessed it, Virtua Cop 2. Virtua Cop 2 follows the lives of three officers and their exploits in the field of crimefighting. Don't ask me to explain how a two player game can have three main characters, I just don't know. Actually, I don't think that the game knows either. Suffice to say that you can only play this game with two players.
The graphics in this game easily surpasses those of the original. No longer are all the enemies rejects from Reservoir Dogs or extra Blues Brothers who needed the cash. Now, there are many different enemies, some from Platoon, the cargo loader from Aliens, and even George Michael (well, it looks like him). These characters know their parts well and always get to their entrances on time. They even fall off buildings and crash through conveniently placed wooden crates . . .
All the joking aside, the graphics for Virtua Cop 2 are amazing. Depending on where you hit the enemy, their bodies react differently. Shoot them in the head and they get snapped over backwards, shoot them in the groin and they fall forward, clutching themselves. Also, there are many more interactive background items than in the previous version. You can blast bottles, windows, lighing fixtures, fruit, nearly anything. If there's a car in front of you, simply shoot out a tire and watch it jackknife across the road. Your bullets will even mark the walls behind your opponent. Though they may not be the best polygons you have ever seen, they certainly are some of the smoothest. Visually, this game just couldn't be much better.
Several of the voices in Virtua Cop 2 are still not CD quality. Every boss has a taunt that they mumble at you; it takes a couple of tries before you can understand it. Many people complained about this in the first Virtua Cop and it's surprising that they didn't fix it for the second time around.
The biggest complaint is usually about the glowing sights that surround an enemy when they appear. Some people like them and some people don't. But, just as in the original, you can turn off the sight in the options menu. The only problem is when there are multiple enemies on the screen, you don't know which one to shoot first. The game was designed to incorporate the glowing sight and is a lot harder without it.
A new addition to Virtua Cop 2 is the ability to choose between two different paths per level. Though most of each level is on a predetermined path, in each of the three levels there is a point at which you can choose which way to go. Only on the intermediate level do the paths end differently. Otherwise, the two paths reconnect at a later point so you can meet the final boss.
The best thing about Virtua Cop 2 is that it appeals to a wide audience. Although some parents may be concerned about the high level of violence, I'm not so concerned: Every day we have people walk into our office to play the latest and best games. So far, Virtua Cop 2 has been the one that they have wanted to play to most, especially among people who don't normally play video games at all. Not a single person was able to play only once. One visitor went so far as to describe it as a 'stress reliever.' Maybe if they had these things in Post Offices fewer people would feel the need to try the real thing.
All told, Virtua Cop 2 is the best shooter to come out for the home console systems (so far). The amazing realism combined with the beautiful graphics overwhelmingly compensate for the preposterous size of the gun (oops, I mean stunner). If you want a game that will appeal to all audiences, young and old, stop searching and pick up a copy of Virtua Cop 2.