Grand Theft Auto 2

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Grand Theft Auto 2
GTA2 Box art.jpg
Developer(s)
Publisher(s)Rockstar Games
Director(s)
Designer(s)
  • Stephen Banks
  • William Mills
  • Billy Thomson
Programmer(s)
  • Keith R. Hamilton
  • Martin McKenzie (GBC)
Artist(s)
  • Ian McQue
  • Russell East (GBC)
Writer(s)Dan Houser
Composer(s)
  • Colin Anderson
  • Craig Conner
  • Bert Reid
  • Stuart Ross
  • Paul Scargill
  • Anthony Paton (GBC)
SeriesGrand Theft Auto
Platform(s)
Release
Genre(s)Action-adventure
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Grand Theft Auto 2 is an action-adventure game, developed by DMA Design and published by Rockstar Games, for Microsoft Windows and the PlayStation in October 1999, and the Dreamcast and Game Boy Color in 2000. It is the sequel to 1997's Grand Theft Auto, and the second instalment of the Grand Theft Auto series. The game focuses on players taking on the role of a criminal as they roam a fictional futuristic city, conducting jobs for various crime syndicates and having free rein to do whatever they wish to achieve their goal. The game's intro is unique for a title in the series, as it involved live-action scenes filmed by Rockstar Games.

The game received mixed reviews from critics, though the GBC version fared the worst, but was a modest commercial success. Grand Theft Auto 2 was succeeded by Grand Theft Auto III in October 2001, while the game itself was re-released on Steam in January 2008.[5]

Gameplay[edit]

Grand Theft Auto 2 being played at "dusk" in the Windows version.

Like its predecessor Grand Theft Auto, the game focuses on players completing a series of levels, each requiring a set target score being achieved in order to progress to the next stage. Points are awarded from various criminal actions such as destroying cars, selling vehicles, and completing missions for various crime syndicates, with the latter awarding more points than doing simple criminal actions. Unlike its predecessor, Grand Theft Auto 2 is set in an unspecified time period—conflicting sources suggest anything from "three weeks into the future",[6] to the year to be 2013,[7] despite in-game references—and within a retrofuturistic metropolis referred to only as "Anywhere, USA",[7] with each level focused on a different district of the city. Completing jobs earns points and a multiplier bonus, while failing them earns nothing. Creating chaos from their crimes will cause the player to be wanted by the police who will hound the player to arrest or kill them, with higher wanted levels increasing the level of response used. Being arrested or dying loses the player any equipment they found, and impacts their multiplier bonus.

Grand Theft Auto 2 introduced several new features and improvements to the game. Players can now save their game during a playthrough of a level by visiting the church they start at, but must pay a set number of points to do so. Jobs on offer come from three different syndicates—each level features two unique syndicates, alongside a third syndicate present in all levels. By doing jobs for a syndicate and successfully completing them, the player gains respect with that syndicate, allowing them to take on tougher jobs with enough respect, but lose it with their chief rivals, locking them out of their jobs and making the syndicate's members hostile to the player. Other improvements include vehicles and pedestrians being more interactive with the game's environment—such as gang members engaging in fights with police—the presence of other criminals (such as muggers),[8] a health meter, garages that can modify vehicles with special improvements, a selection of side missions ranging from running a taxi to driving a semi-truck, and groups of 'hidden' packages to find across the level.

GTA 2 – The Movie[edit]

The game was developed with an eight-minute short film of live-action footage, filmed within New York City. The movie was devised as an introductory sequence for the game, and was made available on Rockstar Games's website. The film focuses on the exploits of a criminal named Claude Speed (Scott Maslen), who conducts jobs around Anywhere City, before being killed by an assassin from one of the syndicates. The film was based on a screenplay by Dan Houser, and directed by Alex De Rakoff.[citation needed]

Soundtrack[edit]

Each area features five radio stations from a pool of eleven, one of which is heard as the player drives most vehicles in-game. Changing radio stations for preference is possible. "Head Radio" was present in the original Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories. Each gang has its own radio station that transmits within a limited area. Police vehicles, ambulances, fire trucks and tanks had no ability to listen to the radio channels. Instead, the player would hear the radio transmitter of the emergency services.

All the music and the ads included in the game are exclusive, following the tradition of previous games. People in charge of the musical content were Craig Conner, Stuart Ross, Paul Scargill, Colin Anderson, Bert Reid and Moving Shadow. Some of these producers would keep their work on subsequent GTA releases.

The Game Boy Color version uses some real songs, one of which is a sped up version of Back in Black by AC/DC. The Character Selection theme is an old Brazilian song titled "Chega de Saudade".

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate scores
AggregatorScore
GameRankings71.50% (PC)[9]
70.80% (DC)[10]
69.92% (PS1)[11]
35.00% (GBC)[12]
Metacritic70/100 (PS1)[13]
Review scores
PublicationScore
Edge8/10[17]
GameSpot6.9/10 (PS1)[14]
6.9/10 (DC)[15]
6.8/10 (PC)[16]
IGN7.3/10 (PC)[8]
6.8/10 (PS1)
6.7/10 (DC)
Next Generation2/5 stars[18]

Grand Theft Auto 2's computer version received a "Silver" sales award from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA),[19] indicating sales of at least 100,000 copies in the United Kingdom.[20] The game's PlayStation version received a "Platinum" sales award (300,000 or more units in the United Kingdom) from ELSPA.[21]

Grand Theft Auto 2 was released to mixed reviews.[13] The game's graphics received mixed reactions from critics, who noted that they had barely any difference to the graphics in the original game. IGN's Tal Blevins called them "average at best", and that the scenery is "hard to appreciate".[8] Jeff Gerstmann of GameSpot said that the "graphics look a bit plain."[22] The game's soundtrack received positive feedback, with Jeff Gerstmann calling it a "great soundtrack", and that it "closely [mirrors] the station-style of the original game".[22] Tal Blevins of IGN called it "one of the best features" of the game.[8]

Grand Theft Auto 2's gameplay elements received mixed reactions. IGN's Jeremy Dunham said that the gameplay is "where the game really takes a punch to the stomach", and that it "could've been a lot better."[23] Tal Blevins called it "simple, but effective."[8] Jeff Gerstmann said that "even though the gameplay is largely the same as in the previous GTA, it's still a lot of fun."[22] Edge highlighted the game's story development and inventive missions, stating that Grand Theft Auto 2 "manages to draw you deep into the complexities of its world".[17]

Blake Fischer reviewed the Dreamcast version of the game for Next Generation, rating it two stars out of five, and stated that it is "A great idea that, for one reason or another, never really gets into a must-play game."[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Take-Two Interactive Software Inc.'s Rockstar Games Division Announces its GTA2 has Gone Gold and Will Ship Worldwide on October 22". Business Wire. Berkshire Hathaway. 13 October 1999. Archived from the original on 3 December 2018. Retrieved 8 July 2019 – via TheFreeDictionary.com.
  2. ^ Kennedy, Sam (13 October 1999). "Rockstar's GTA2 Goes Gold". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on 16 April 2000. Retrieved 8 July 2019.
  3. ^ "Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc.'s Rockstar Games Launches GTA2 For the Sega Dreamcast; Grand Theft Auto Franchise Makes Sega System Debut". Business Wire. Berkshire Hathaway. 1 May 2000. Archived from the original on 3 December 2018. Retrieved 8 July 2019 – via TheFreeDictionary.com.
  4. ^ a b Kennedy, Sam (13 October 1999). "Rockstar's GTA2 Goes Gold". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 16 April 2000.
  5. ^ Steam (4 January 2008). "News – Rockstar Games Brings Full Line-up to Steam". Valve. Archived from the original on 20 August 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  6. ^ "GTA2 – Frameset". Rockstar Games. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
  7. ^ a b "GTA2 – Individual Police Files". Rockstar Games. Retrieved 29 April 2007.
  8. ^ a b c d e Blevins, Tal (18 November 1999). "Grand Theft Auto 2 – IGN". IGN. Archived from the original on 13 February 2008. Retrieved 29 April 2007.
  9. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 for PC". GameRankings. Archived from the original on 20 June 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  10. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 for Dreamcast". GameRankings. Archived from the original on 30 August 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  11. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 for PlayStation". GameRankings. Archived from the original on 5 September 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  12. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 for Game Boy Color". GameRankings. Archived from the original on 9 August 2012. Retrieved 12 August 2012.
  13. ^ a b "Grand Theft Auto 2 for PlayStation Reviews". Metacritic. Archived from the original on 30 April 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  14. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 - GameSpot.com". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 3 March 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  15. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 - GameSpot.com". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 29 January 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  16. ^ "Grand Theft Auto 2 - GameSpot.com". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 29 January 2013. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  17. ^ a b "Grand Theft Auto 2". Edge. No. 79. Future Publishing. December 1999. pp. 80–81.
  18. ^ a b Fischer, Blake (August 2000). "Finals". Next Generation. Vol. 3 no. 8. Imagine Media. p. 90.
  19. ^ "ELSPA Sales Awards: Silver". Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association. Archived from the original on 21 February 2009.
  20. ^ Caoili, Eric (26 November 2008). "ELSPA: Wii Fit, Mario Kart Reach Diamond Status In UK". Gamasutra. Archived from the original on 18 September 2017.
  21. ^ "ELSPA Sales Awards: Platinum". Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association. Archived from the original on 15 May 2009.
  22. ^ a b c Gerstmann, Jeff (22 October 1999). "Grand Theft Auto 2 Review - GameSpot.com". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  23. ^ Dunham, Jeremy (8 May 2000). "Grand Theft Auto 2 Review – IGN". Retrieved 26 August 2013.

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