Mea culpa: This is the Police II is actually kind of brilliant

In an effort to be less wrong than Aristotle (it is the site’s tagline, after all), I’ve reevaluated This is the Police II after some more playing time. I believe my original concerns are valid, specifically, that the game hides some rather critical information from the player. What changed my mind is that you can go back and re-play a specific day. Why is that significant? With the key bit of knowledge in mind (if you take anybody who doesn’t have a hat on, you’re basically committing suicide), I replayed one of the days, which you guys will see coming up in a future video.

And… my word, do I fucking LOVE the turn based aspects of the game now.

XCOM, as an example, is rightly hailed as a superb tactical turn based game. But many, if not most, of the best parts of the game are in the mid to late game, when your soldiers get more abilities. By contrast, This is the Police II gives you tons of tactical options right from the beginning, and they all work in a fairly sensible way (except stun grenades — it isn’t always clear why you can or can’t throw them in a specific place). If you are good at remembering what your people are good at (I am not), you can place and deploy your officers in a way to take advantage of, say, one guy’s ability to defuse a bomb or one gal’s ability to jump over a fence. You can go loud or you can go quiet. You can arrest a suspect, interrogate him, and get positions for all other people on the map. You can go the XCOM route and overwatch, but know that your cops don’t have rifles, and revolvers aren’t great at long distances. You can use a sniper once you decide to go loud, as long as there’s clear line of sight.

It reminds me, in the very best of ways, of Police Quest SWAT, without some of that game’s concerns (placing tear gas was often a nightmare, and it was incredibly easy to get hostages killed).

I’m not saying that This is the Police II doesn’t have some problems or that it’s flawless. In particular, I would like more feedback on relationships between cops before I try to click “send”. It’s a bit easier to remember the more prominent issues with people when you’ve played more, but it could be clearer. I’m also starting to fall into the camp of “there are too many cutscenes,” as it seems you can’t go a full day without at least one, sometimes two. I still love the weird relationship between Jack and Lily, as there’s a very strange but wonderful chemistry between them.

I think This is the Police II is a worthy successor to the first game. Just remember the hats, and you’ll be fine.

Probably.

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