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Rampage 2: Universal Tour (PlayStation) artwork

Rampage 2: Universal Tour (PlayStation) review


"Rampage World Tour, by anyoneís standards a pretty crummy game. Poor graphics, terrible sound, amazing one button gameplay, repetitive, monotonous and rendered totally unchallenging buy the inclusion of infinite continues. Yet I have an enormous amount of affection for this game? Do I have no standards at all? Well Iím not going to make out this is some kind of neglected classic cos it ainít. What it is though is an immensely satisfying slice of brain fluff, great for relieving stress and irrita..."



Rampage World Tour, by anyoneís standards a pretty crummy game. Poor graphics, terrible sound, amazing one button gameplay, repetitive, monotonous and rendered totally unchallenging buy the inclusion of infinite continues. Yet I have an enormous amount of affection for this game? Do I have no standards at all? Well Iím not going to make out this is some kind of neglected classic cos it ainít. What it is though is an immensely satisfying slice of brain fluff, great for relieving stress and irritation during those times when even watching The Jerry Springer Show feels like a major intellectual effort. Rampage World Tour is in fact the videogame equivalent of an executive toy. Not a totally terrible analogy, like those silver clacking balls Rampage World Tour is very much a throwback to the 1980ís and its own Arcade predecessor.

Rampage World Tour actually has a storyline. Itís just before dawn in the small Illinois town of Toxic Hollow, an employee of ScumLabs International (worlds foremost toxic waste recycler) has called head office. Betty Veronica (for it is she) has just begun to voice her concerns over lab safety when reports come in of an explosion and three technicians have been exposed to volatile toxins. They technicians are known as Ralph, Lizzie and George and are next spotted rampaging through the streets of downtown Preoria. Ralph has mutated into a giant Man-Wolf, George is now a huge gorilla and Lizzie is a kind of Godzilla lizard. The beasts are intent on wiping ScumLabs off the faces of the earth, which they do buy smashing up every city they come across. Betty Veronica grimly charts their progress across the globe as ScumLabs military wing attempts to wipe them out.

The best thing about Rampage World Tour is you get to play as the monsters not the humans and create as much devastation as possible. That always appealed to me even waaaay back in the 1980ís when I first pumped coins into the arcade version. Of course I didnít expect the updated PlayStation version to resemble it so closely in looks as well as gameplay, but there you go. Each monster appears to be a sort of digitised 3D model superimposed on the cartoon city backgrounds. You jump to attack your self to buildings and press triangle to punch holes in it or circle to kick it. Climb on a roof and you can jump up and down on a building until it collapses.

As you smash buildings up, you can pick up and eat bystanders or soldiers, smash the helicopters out of the sky and squish tanks. Soldiers fire guns and missiles at you to drain your health but you can find food to replenish it, although bad food will make you vomit. Run out of health and youíll shrink down into a teeny naked human again and sidle off. If you eat purple ooze you will change into a purple demon and can raze the level in super quick time. As you go on your reign of carnage you are awarded pints at the end of each city, the faster you do it and the more people you eat the higher your score. Then itís on to the next (virtually) identical city. There are about 100 of these and as you can just continue when you die its not hard to finish it.

Interspersed between the levels are amusing comments; well semi-amusing comments and Betty Veronica will tot up your scores. Occasionally you will take to the skies on an aeroplane and score bonus points for punching ScumLab planes. These levels are meant to show you moving to another country to continue your Rampage. However the new cities look suspiciously like the USA ones, only with the occasional landmark (Big Ben, Eiffel Tower) slapped on the background. The World Tour aspect being the only real difference from the original Rampage game. The manual is also pretty funny, it has more exclamation marks per page than any other game manual I have ever read.

OK, I scrabbling for reasons here, so let me give you a clear and concise list of just why Rampage is so appealing to me:

1) The repetitive gameplay induces a hypnotic state almost akin to meditation.
2) Itís the best game to play while under the influence, as it requires little coordination or indeed skill.
3) Wanton destruction is always good.
4) While playing it I can pretend Iím back in my favourite decade Ė the 1980ís
5) I only paid £2 for it
6) ErÖ
7) UmÖ
8) I just like it OK!!!

In summary let me offer you this. When I was chatting with another gaming chum of mine the other day, I said I had been playing Rampage World Tour a lot and he offered this opinion; ďI canít tell you the exasperation I feel when I hear youíve been playing crappy games like that and ignoring quality ones like Space Station Silicon ValleyĒ.

Well heís got a point.

Rating: 5/10

falsehead's avatar
Community review by falsehead (March 09, 2004)

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