Dirty Money! Review

Smuggler's Run 2: Hostile Territory Info


  • Racing


  • 1 - 2


  • Rockstar Games


  • Rockstar Games

Release Date

  • 12/31/1969
  • Out Now


  • PS2


Dirty Money!

Whomever coined the phrase “Crime doesn’t pay” has never heard of Rockstar

Games. Crime is paying them pretty damn well this quarter. Stealing cars and

generally running amuck in Liberty

has earned them both the rare Game Revolution ‘A’ and terrific sales


Next up on Rockstar’s criminal to-do list is smuggling contraband across the

borders of various countries. Noncommittal crime from the comfort of our love

seats will always turn heads. But can Smuggler’s Run 2: Hostile Territory

hold the attention of all the virtual crooks out there?

Smuggler’s Run 2 improves on most of the gray areas that plagued the

original – mainly, the story. While there was

a hint of a plot in the first game, it felt like an afterthought. Here we have

a full story complete with campy live-action cut-scenes that better meld the

gameplay with the drama.

You take on the role of a seasoned getaway driver who is under the employ of

Frank Luger (some sort of mercenary official). Frank takes the place of the

randy suggestive female announcer/guide from the last game and will provide

helpful navigation during your runs. Your job is to pick up and drop off various

forms of contraband to be delivered between countries.

It may sound easy, but it’s not. You have to first locate the pick-up and drop-off

spots, which are marked with yellow and red flares to help you spot them in

the game’s vast and expansive areas. Picking up the contraband is usually no

hassle; the contest is in the delivery. The law enforcement is out in force

and they’re pissed. Plus, they’ve learned a few new tricks over the past year.

The heat will still try to slam into you and box you in. More complex maneuvers

like cutting you off and setting up roadblocks add to the challenge.

The game’s not called Hostile Territory for nothing. The locales are

much more brutal this time around, placing you in Vietnam, Russia, and oddly

enough, Afghanistan. Indeed, you will be driving straight through a literal

war zone. Gunfire, explosions and all kinds of calamity add to the intensity.

The world is much livelier than it was before, and in turn, a bit more fun.

It’s a lot better looking, too. The game is still a technical wizard, featuring

huge, open vistas with little to no cost on the texture quality. The buildings

and houses look more realistic and there is a better variety of foliage than

there was in the last game. And now the cars have more than one or two colors

– they’re actually detailed with nice textures and a variety of looks. The game

is exceedingly prettier than last year’s smuggle.


cars may look better, but the game’s handling is still as tight as it’s ever

been. Controlling these puppies so you can skillfully evade the boys in blue

(or whatever color the law wears in each country) is easy and great fun. The

physics will still impress you. Great suspension means you’ll bounce, fishtail

and roll with the best of them. But if you ever need a little extra trick up

your sleeve, Rockstar’s got you covered.

Each vehicle is equipped with a countermeasure. These include oil slicks, bombs,

speed bursts and smoke screens ala Spy Hunter.

They’re fine, but I wish there were more weapons like guns or rockets. Maybe

that way the weapons would have played more of a pivotal role in the game’s

fun factor. As it stands, the countermeasures don’t have much of an impact.

You do you get more vehicles this time around and the ATV in particular is

very cool. Still, there could have been even more to choose from.

Smuggler’s Run 2 is an improvement in almost ever way except one, yet

it’s perhaps the most important – repetition. You drive, pick-up and drop off.

Rinse and repeat. How about some variety? After you play through the first time,

I don’t know why you’d do it again. Off-roading across the game’s incredible

landscapes is fine, but the actual single player campaign is bit dry. There

are a few other single player game modes, but most have to with the same sort

of bland pick-up and delivery.

However, you do get a couple multiplayer modes to keep you coming back a few

more times. One is a decent checkpoint race and the other is back to basics

with 1-on-1 pick-up and delivery matches. These add some replayability, but

not much.

Smuggler’s Run 2: Hostile Territory is a better game than the original

and makes a lot more sense. Repetitive gameplay still holds it down, but there’s

a lot of fun to be had even if it you only play through it once.


Huge, open areas
Good control & suspension
Poor use of weapons
Limited multiplayer