Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now
Description official descriptions
Carmageddon II is essentially more of the same. Whether this is a good or bad thing pretty much depends on how you liked the first.
In case you need to be told, this game sends the politically-correct-o-meter flying towards absolute zero, perhaps only beaten by Duke Nukem 3D. The framework is a futuristic race inspired by Deathrace 2000 and The Cars That Ate Paris: The contestants, in sport cars, monster trucks, and other motorized abominations, are placed on a track, a real populated area. Getting to the finish line first is secondary, and in fact seldom happens; the real winner is the one to trash everyone else, running over pedestrians on the way for extra profit.
- 3D Engine: BRender
- BPjS / BPjM indexed games
- Carmageddon series
- Drivable Vehicle: Forklift
- Drivable Vehicle: Monster Truck
- Genre: Car / motorcycle combat
- Genre: Truck racing / driving
- Setting: Destroyer / Cruiser / Carrier
- Setting: Ship / Boat
- Theme: Future sports / Brutal sports
- Theme: Zombies
- White Label releases
Credits (Windows version)
111 People (104 developers, 7 thanks) · View all
|VP of Development|
|Public Relations Manager|
|Manual Design and Layout|
|QA Project Supervisors|
|QA Senior Tester|
|[ full credits ]|
Average score: 71% (based on 38 ratings)
Average score: 3.4 out of 5 (based on 107 ratings with 7 reviews)
If you have happened to read my Carmageddon 1 review you know that for me it's the maybe the best game in the world. You can also see that on my nickname.
What about Carmageddon 2 then? Well, it's basically using the same idea as it's ancestor but it upgrades the graphics, sounds, damages, pretty much everything. But does it all work better than with the first one? Well... no.
When you first look at the game you see that the graphics have been upgraded with a rough hand. Well, it's a good thing, really, as the designers have made good graphics but didn't use too much of the newest gimics to make the game look like a graphics card demo.
When you start playing you notice that the sound engine has been slightly upgraded. Sure, it's not awesome, but it makes it's job.
From the first crash you notice the new damage engine. That's the first real part to make hoorays about. The cars get really demolished this time. For instance, if you hit a wall sideways, the side of the car gets smashed. Some pieces fall off if you damage them enough. The windows get shattered, the doors and the hood get opened up and the chassis might bend. But the most stylish part is when you hit a corner of a wall head-on. Your car get's sliced... Literally. If you're in luck, you can get it fixed up, but usually when the car goes into two directions at once, your race is lost.
The physics engine has been upgraded, but the basic stuff is the same. As I mentioned, the cars get damaged more realistically. One another new thing, though: You can drive through windows and some walls. Well, that's a new thing. One of the scenes has a whole wall full of glass. You can just break the windows if you don't hit the steel supports.
The driveability is pretty much the same as before, and no big news there. And the whole thing has been cherished with new levels and cars. the cars are in fact good, but the levels are checked out in the negative section.
All of these things have been upgraded more or less succesfully. These things make the game better than the first. But...
... SCI has also upgraded the gameplay. And that's a big mistake.
First, they have increased the skill level. Well, that's not bad, but they've done it all wrong, by tightening the time limits. With Carmageddon 2, the first seconds are not relaxed driving around. They are panicking on the road as you see your time going on red.
Another thing is the level system of the new game. With the old one, you had five places to drive at a time, and as you won races, you lost old places and gained new ones. You also had very different scenes all the time to choose from, and if you didn't like one, you could just leave it alone. The system was a good example on how it should be made.
Unfortunately the new one is an example on how it shouldn't be done. In Carmageddon 2, you have ten levels and all of them have three similar scenes and one mission... Yes, the game has missions. It might sound good, but it most definately ain't even near good. The missions are not fun. They have waaay too tight time limits and if you make one mistake you have no change to make it. The goals are mostly "destroy all the antennas" or "kill all the cows/lunatics/somethings". You have to win all the three races and the mission to get to the next level. On level's, there are usually two races with the same scene and one different. All this stuff with the levels is a very big minus.
The scenes aren't as good as the old ones. Sure, this one has trains and/or civilian vehicles around, but whey don't get demolished. they are just moving chicanes on wheels. You don't even get points from them. Also, the 3D model citizens are not as nice to drive on as the sprite ones.
On the final note, the game is boring on a long shot. Playing it through took me (a player who played Red Alert 2 and Gran Turismo through over a weekend) two weeks just because I had to keep pauses due the boredom the game causes. You just can't go into the Carmageddon world and drive around hour after hour. I mean sure, you can hit a few pedestrians and drive around some more, but it's not fun after a while.
The Bottom Line
SCI managed to build a legend on wheels with the first Carmageddon. The sequel had big expectations, but it failed them almost completely. The relaxing and amusing feeling of the old game has been taken away on the small but very annoying mistakes in the gameplay compartment.
But, Carmageddon is still Carmageddon. The added graphics and improved damage model succeed in making the mayhem of racing fun in short takes. A few games a day, maybe. Maybe even less. If you get bored, take a pause and play more when you feel like it.
Windows · by Zamppa (99) · 2002
Nopes, not a thing.
Same gameplay, worse controls and even more horrid graphics than the original Carmageddon. This game makes me want to puke.
The Bottom Line
Cliché premise, bad graphics, terribly slow engine and crappy all-around game. What more can you ask for?
Windows · by Tomer Gabel (4539) · 2000
Carmageddon II is essentially more of the same. This is a good thing. There's an updated 3D engine (now sprite-free and Direct3D accelerated), little things have been added and taken away, and there's a new structure to the races. The physics and car control-and-feel are even more brilliant, allowing you to bounce, spin, skid, do wheelies... it really does feel like a real car, even when you're driving outlandish monster trucks.
The environment has improved a lot since the original, with windows and fences that break, loads of objects that can be pushed around, objects that push you around, and the ability to get just about everywhere with a bit of creative driving. It really feels like these are real places you're trashing.
When paired with the circuit idea from the original, this makes it shine all the brighter; it still feels like there's half a race going on, so the action tends to if not follow, at least loosely hang around the checkpoints and the paths in between. In this way, the full subtlety of the settings comes out as you discover new things when you return to the same setting with a different track layout later on. It's almost enough to make you feel more like driving around checking out the scenery than driving into, over and through the motorists and pedestrians on the way. But only almost.
The fact that everything is 3D, including the pedestrians, does shift the focus of play some; for one, there's less of a splatter factor when ramming at high speed. On the other hand, dismemberment is now possible, and there are additional bonuses for sadistic games such as playing with your victims and sending them flying, not to mention some extremely fun power-up combinations; need I say more than "suicidal turbo pedestrians?"
Damage to cars is a lot more detailed; fun in particular when you get your opponents to the point where only two of their wheels touch the ground, confining them to running helplessly in circles.
Towards the end, however, it wears thin. Because of the grouped-track layout, you can get stuck on a particular set of tracks when there's a difficult mission, and there's nothing to stop you from building up for as long as you like before you progress. Since your opponents don't improve the way you do, this makes for some rather easy races.
In the beginning, it's way too easy to get yourself split in half by driving into the side of a building, and for the last third of the game, most of the vehicles are truck-types(trailers, buses, even a plane), which sort of takes the fun out of it. The trucks are really just slow and unwieldy once the power rush fades, and then you're stuck driving them since the only thing likely to take out a truck is another truck.
Carm2's realistic car control might be the biggest argument against it; after all, if it feels so much like a real car, couldn't you wind up ramming pedestrians or taking out motorists in real life?
I played both this and the original within one year, and I can't say it changed my driving habits any. It did, however, make me a more nervous pedestrian; after all, a line of cars waiting at the red light by a pedestrian crossing look very similar to the pack of cars waiting for the start signal while pedestrians walk by, blissfully oblivious.
No way would I play this game with a driving wheel and gas/brake pedal controller, however. You really don't want this closer to the mood of being behind a real driving wheel.
The Bottom Line
Lots more fun for homicidal lunatics everywhere.
Windows · by Ola Sverre Bauge (237) · 2000
1001 Video Games
Carmageddon II: Carpocalypse Now appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.
The administration of Buenos Aires, Argentina tried to ban this game in 1999. They didn't succeed.
The US version is banned in Germany for excessive violence against the innocent (30.10.99). The German version is censored - it has robots instead of humans.
References to the game
The Music in Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now is played by the band Iron Maiden.
The UK version has zombies instead of pedestrians and green blood.
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Chris Martin.
Game added April 26th, 2000. Last modified September 7th, 2023.