Format: PS2
Age Restrictions: 18+

Set in a post-apocalyptic world destroyed by a plague and ruled by gangs, RoadKill allows players to create havoc in more than 30 vehicles with weapons such as machine-guns, guided missiles and grenade launchers. Assuming the role of the mercenary, players must build a gang following as they battle rival gangs, city guards and anyone else that gets in the way...

Obvious comparisons are going to be made between Roadkill and the last two Grand Theft Auto games - an understandable comparison on the surface, but one that is a little unfair. There are a lot of elements in this game that surpass those in GTA, and there are elements that it doesn't, but at the end of the day Roadkill is a very different game.

You start the game with your trusty Cajones vehicle - fitted with standard guns tucked behind the radiator grill (ALA James Bond's Aston Martin DB-5) and a lethal machine gun turret positioned on the back to provide 360 degrees cover. Now all you have to do is drive around the streets looking for extra weapons and completing the numerous missions available. It won't be long before you are collecting weapons, improving the performance of your vehicles (air brakes, nitrogen turbo upgrades, health upgrades and weapon speed increase) and unlocking other vehicles.

Okay... so far it sounds like a cross between GTA and Mad Max. To the casual observer that might be true, but there is much more to this game. Get the wrong ammo and you won't make a dent on your enemies vehicles before they've blown you to bits; or fail to keep your eye on the road and you'll miss one of the numerous traps that can be set for unsuspecting road users.

This game hasn't got an 18 certificate because the red circle looks cool on the packaging - this really is a game that should only be played by the more mature gamer. There's plenty of swearing and sexual content. One of the radio stations you can listen to is full of hilarious wall to wall sexual filth as caller after caller ring in with their problems. Want to hear a man talking about having sex with a pancake and then having sex with a pigeon live on air? Then this will amuse you for hours.

When Grand Theft Auto III was released on the PS2 it caused no end of complaints from do-gooder pressure groups - most of whom won't have played it. So, imagine the impact that Roadkill is going to have when these same groups get around to hearing what it contains.

But this all adds to the realism of the game. When you're being rammed by a guy (oo-er) in a 4x4 the last thing you are going to say is: "Excuse me! Do you mind most awfully not doing that?" No! Just like in the real world, when someone drives erratically, you scream obscenities. And that's just what happens here.

Another element, which will no doubt have loads of people complaining, is the extra gore included. Most driving games see you hitting pedestrians, who then fly over the bumper and disappear. But Roadkill is a little sicker and lets you drag the poor victims around for a while as they trail blood all over the road. And if you can time it just right, they will be stuck on your bumper for quite some time before they fall under your wheels... nice!

All of these elements help to create a game that is very different from GTA - in some ways superior. While you can't get out of your vehicle, you probably won't want to.

And, once you are bored of playing by yourself (and I'm sure in a few months you may well start to tire) then you can have a four way deathmatch. In this mode two to four players get to battle it out to the death in one of a number of battle arenas. You can choose from all of the cars in the main game and all of the weapons are hidden around the arena to be found and used against your opponents.

To be honest, this is the section of the game that we've been playing here in the office - there's something very, very satisfying about seeing your boss explode time and time again.

This is a fantastically addictive game - one that is sure to become an instant classic... just don't play it in front of Grandma!

Pete Boomer

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