Most of you’ll probably remember the previous version of this game, the first real hit from the Bugbear development team. In that game, you were supposed to race against a few opponents and while doing so the goal was to wreck the environment and the opposition as much as possible. Apart from that, there also was the possibility to play mini-games such as “High Jump” where you launched your driver as high as possible into a net. In this new version of FlatOut the concept hasn’t changed a bit!
As mentioned above, there are multiple modes to play the game in. The first one is the stunt mode. Here you can play all kinds of sports, like soccer and basketball, put into a FlatOut theme. Of course these “sports” aren’t all that detailed as they are in the average sports title. Don’t forget, FlatOut 2 IS a race game! You can explain all stunts in a couple of words: the goal is to gain as much speed as possible and on top of that you need to choose the correct angle to launch your driver. This way you’ll get the highest scores possible… Sounds simple enough, but wait until you had a shot at it yourself. I bet most of you are going to be spending hours behind their PS2 console before they’ll get the hang of it.
Another mode is the “casual” race mode. Nothing has been changed compared to FlatOut. The main target remains wining the race and to do so you’ll be needing nitro. Now I can hear you thinking: how do I get the nitro? Well, it’s quite simple, think “Burnout”. Just ram the surroundings and your opponents to pieces! The more you do that, the more boosting power you’ll get. The races are set from off-road tracks with derby cars, up to city races with real high speed automobiles.
Then there’s the last game mode, the derby. Every self-respecting gamer above the age of 20 should remember the old days on the PSone. I’m talking about Destruction Derby! The concepts of these 2 are exactly the same: ram your opponents to pieces and be the last man/woman standing.
All the above were put together in the career mode. As you might expect the objective here is to win as many races as possible and gain money by doing so. With that money you can buy new cars or upgrade an old one. The core idea of the game: ramming and winning! That’s it!
Now for the multiplayer part… There are 2 possible methods to play in multiplayer. First of you’ve got the split screen. Here you can simply race each other as you would do it in the normal race mode. No special stuff here. The second mode on the other hand, is something completely different. It’s called “Party Mode”. The thing here is to stunt your way to the top of the ranking board consisting of the other players in the room. This mode is a guarantee of tension and excitement for everyone who joined in on the game.
When talking controls in FlatOut 2, one word suffices to tell it all: Simplicity! This is one of the easiest games to learn, even when you’re totally new to the world of gaming. All you need are two buttons: the throttle and the boost.
The graphics in this Bugbear racer aren’t that spectacular. The only real beauty here would be the car reflection details together with the fairly detailed car models. What really pulls it all down are the surroundings. While standing in front of one of the elements in the neighbourhood, you can start the pixel counting. I even saw a hexagon as a wheel of a fire truck :/
The verdict: overall, FlatOut 2 is a pretty good game and I can really recommend it to most of the new gamers out there because of it’s addictive simplicity. FUN is the main theme in this game.