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Publisher: Running With Scissors    Genre: Action
Min OS X: 10.2.8    CPU: G3 @ 700 MHz    RAM: 256 MB    Hard Disk: 2000 MB    Graphics: 32 MB VRAM

Postal 2: Share The Pain
February 1, 2005 | Eddie Park

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Senseless Random Violence
I have never played a game that so completely embraces violence and degradation on such a grand scale. There may be games out there that are gorier or sicker, but I cant think of a single one that makes such qualities the center of the game itself. The very beginning of the game sees Postal Dude (the name of our hero) stepping into a fresh pile of dog feces, plenty of which is scattered around the dusty lot on which his humble trailer sits.

If this wasnt an obvious enough clue as to the content of this game, then perhaps the fact that one of the key maps in the controls section is labeled "unzip" may expel any preconceptions about the utter baseness of Postal 2. Yes, Postal Dude can, if players wish it, unzip his trousers and walk around town with his manhood hanging out for all to witness. And witness it they do, with citizens gasping in shock, giggling uncontrollably, and the police requesting that you zip that up or else. Forget to retract the old jackhammer before a cutscene, and a nice CENSORED box will keep the game from delving into the realm of the pornographic.

As for the SRV itself, perhaps it would be best to give a typical example of what Postal Dude can do if the whim strikes him. Let's say some poor soul has the misfortune to cross Postal Dudes path when hes not in a particularly good mood (which, it must be admitted, is often). Postal Dude starts by tazering the unfortunate, causing him to shake violently. While still in the throes of electric shock, Postal Dude pulls out a pistol and shoots the fellow in the leg, which naturally causes him to fall down. Whimpering and crying, the victim tries to crawl away from the scene. Always ready to demonstrate his considerable cooking skills, Postal Dude then proceeds to pour gasoline on the prone citizen. He lights a match, lets the guy take a good look at it, then tosses it, with predictable flammatory results. Deciding that the blaze may attract too much attention, he unzips and proceeds to urinate on Mr. Toasty. While this eventually puts out the fire, our friend is now covered in burns, and can do little other than curl up into a fetal position. Deciding hes had enough, Postal Dude brings out a shovel and decapitates the crispy mess, then proceeds to kick the head down the nearest alley. At this point, another citizen strolls up, notices Postal Dudes handiwork, and starts vomiting, which may have the unfortunate result of piquing Postal Dudes interest in a little violence once again.

And that, in a nutshell, is the bulk of Postal 2. Keeping in mind that the above happened to only one person, and that the humble town of Paradise that Postal Dude claims as his residence is populated by hundreds, the capacity for wanton violence is very much in place. There is a police force, and some citizens do walk around armed, but by and large, these turn out to be more annoyances than actual threats, at least early on in the game. It should be pointed out that Postal 2 rarely rewards the player for SRV, and instead tends to penalize the player with these and more annoyances, which soon start to coalesce into actual threats, including the National Guard and so forth.

The rewards gleaned from this game are the acts of SRV themselves. While somewhere, deep inside, a tiny voice inside me was screaming about the wrongness of it all, the rest of me was wearing the same silly little grin thousands of fans wore while watching the 1992 Olympic U.S. Basketball Team trample their way across dozens of other countries, all in the name of spirited competition. For anyone out there who has ever wanted to go truly postal, Postal 2 delivers in spades. While this game has and will no doubt continue to shock and offend the more prudish members of our society, those looking for unapologetic depravity will find plenty of it behind the eyes of Postal Dude.

To discuss the games myriad weapons would be a disservice to those who have yet to play the game, as half the fun is figuring out what can be used, not to mention how to use it. To give a pointed example, however, one can pick up a cat and utilize it as a silencer of sorts for certain firearms. How the cat is used is best left to your imagination, at least until you see it in all its unholiness in-game.

Another tip though catnip is great for attracting cats, it is possible to ingest it, and the results are priceless.


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