Virtua Cop 2
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|Virtua Cop 2|
|Mode(s)||single player, multiplayer|
|Arcade system||Sega Model 2|
|Display||Raster, standard resolution
Virtua Cop 2 is a light gun arcade game, released in 1995 and developed internally at Sega by their AM2 studio. It was ported to home systems on the Sega Saturn in 1996. It was released on PC in 1997 and Sega Dreamcast in 2000. It was later bundled with Virtua Cop in Virtua Cop: Elite Edition for PlayStation 2 in 2002.
This game was known as Virtua Squad 2 for the North American PC release.
The game was succeeded by Virtua Cop 3.
The game features three levels through which the player's movement is automated on a predetermined path, but not after they encounter road signs they must shoot down, indicating branching paths. It is the player's job to shoot the criminals that appear before time runs out and they shoot back. Along the way there will be various objects in the background that can be broken if shot, some of which will reveal power ups afterwards. At the end of each level there is a boss battle, as well as one extra final boss battle after all three levels have been finished.
A combat training simulator, known as the “Proving Ground" simulates a variety of life-threatening situations. Each Proving Ground stage is designed to simulate a hostile urban environment thronging with enemies. The goal of each stage is to blast through the crowd of thugs while hunting down and taking out the rival player.
- Michael Hardy (Rage) - Two years later, this cop has grown up with his partner, James Cools and a newcomer cop, Janet Marshall. He could do better than anyone else, including his part-time job and his duty training. He is known to be a quick draw when things get under fire. Rage is an all-around character in the game.
- James Cools (Smarty) - Like his partner, Michael who worked the same side for the good as well as he does, this doesn't stop him from beating by some bad guys. Although Rage is quicker on the draw in a gunfight, Smarty is known to be the top shot in the police force.
- Janet Marshall (Janet) - A newly installed special VCPD detective in the Virtua Cop special investigations squad (although the only female cop in the squad), Janet fights for her deceased partner.
Michael "Rage" Hardy and James "Smarty" Cools shut down the E.V.I.L Inc. criminal empire. Three of its leaders, King, Boss, and Kong are all in the maximum security federal pen. The final, fourth member of the E.V.I.L Inc. gang, international terrorist Joe Fang is believed to have been killed in a helicopter crash, though his body was never found. After the downfall of E.V.I.L Inc., a comprehensive investigation of their black market and gun-running activities was launched in the Virtua City bank. Meanwhile, the Virtua City Police Special Investigations Unit got a new member in the shape of Janet Marshall, an expert in criminal psychology profiling.
The vice-president of the Virtua City Bank is killed in shady circumstances that are only officially termed accidental. And the swollen accounts of the now-defunct E.V.I.L Syndicate, which he had been suspected of laundering, are emptied overnight. The missing funds amount to more than the GNP of most small countries.
Meanwhile, on the other side of town, there is a daring daylight raid on the biggest jewelers in the state. And at the site of the new subway construction, there’s been an unusual amount of unexplained activity involving some very suspicious-looking materiel.
When questioned about Sega AM2's plans for Virtua Cop 2 in a February 1995 interview, AM2 manager Fumio Kurokawa stated "We're not sure if there will be [a] VC2. However, since the original VC did well at the arcades, we are certainly thinking about something to follow up."
Reviewing the arcade version, a Next Generation critic commented that "the action, enemies, variation of levels and backgrounds, and the fun are all so improved over Virtua Cop 1, and in all the right places, that no other laser-gun shooter comes close to it right now." He especially praised the high frame rate, the level design, the need for skilled aiming, and the way the game is paced such that bouts of intense shootouts with "multitudes of terrorists" are broken by short pauses to give the player a breather.
The GamesMaster Challenge Event
In 1997, former Games World Videator and future videogames journalist Martin Mathers appeared on the British videogames television show GamesMaster and participated in a challenge to complete a stage on two separate Virtua Cop 2 cabinets at the same time. Mathers ultimately failed the challenge after shooting a bystander and losing a life. This challenge can be seen on the GamesMaster DVD given away on the tenth anniversary issue of GamesMaster magazine in 2003.
- "New from Sega: Virtua Cop 2". Maximum: The Video Game Magazine. Emap International Limited (1): 128. October 1995.
- Ogasawara, Nob (May 1995). "The Creation of Daytona, and the Future Projects of AM2". Electronic Gaming Monthly. Sendai Publishing (70): 70.
- "Bull's-Eye". Next Generation. Imagine Media (12): 209. December 1995.