The original incarnation of the game first appeared on the Playstation. Suffice to say it was an instant classic and well deserved a purchase. Here we are a couple of years later and the sequel has been released not only on Playstation but also on the Dreamcast.
In Vigilante 8: Second Offense, players must stop the Coyote terrorist gang that has traveled back through time in attempt to change the course of events that will allow evil to dominate the world. In your quest to save the fate of the world, gamers get behind the wheel of supercharged combat vehicles, each linked to an over the top character, as they battle through a series of death-matches spanning eight destructible arenas throughout the United States.
Vigilante 8: Second Offense is a great looking game from the outset. However upon closer examination you will find a number of graphical flaws and annoyances. On the positive side, the environments are massive, detailed and highly interactive. Basically anything you can see can be blown into tiny pieces.
This becomes quite fun especially in multiplayer games. The trademark flares that Luxoflux, the developer, are famous for are here in full effect. At times the flares are a little much and appear out of place. The vehicles look great as they slowly deteriorate into heaps of scrap. Despite the number of explosions and things appearing on the screen, the game for the most part retains a 60 frames per second refresh rate. There were a couple of instances of slowdown when heavy duty weapons were going off in abundance. The main problem with the game engine is the horrific collision system.
There are many times when you will drive right clear through a solid object whether it be a building or even another vehicle and sustain major damage as a result. In this sense the game feels a tad rushed to take advantage of the holiday season. Another problem is draw-in. While it does not take away from the action on the screen, it is noticeable in the distance and this is something we had hoped would have been eliminated with the power of Dreamcast. While most will gawk at the collision problem, it actually makes the game more fluid in nature.
T Luxoflux should be awarded with soundtrack of the year. Ranging from 1970's disco beats to retro-dance tracks, in-game music has never sounded better or suited an atmosphere more precisely than those tracks found within Vigilante 8: Second Offense. The sound effects are standard blow-em up affair as are the vehicle effects.