State of Emergency
System: Playstation 2
Publisher: Rock Star Games
Developer: VIS Entertainment
Released: February 15, 2002
Genre: Sports (Football)
Capabilities: Dual Shock 2 Analog & Feedback Compatible, Memory Card Compatible

Review Written: March 6, 2002

The Game

Remember the riots you always see occurring on the news or read about in the newspaper? Would you ever want a chance to take part in one? Thanks to Rock Star Games (the same people who brought us Grand Theft Auto 3), now you can. Almost everyone has been comparing this game to GTA3, so I will do the same. Will it have the same success as it? Let’s get onto the review and find out.

The Story

A riot has broke loose in a mall, and you run missions for your bosses. This is much like Grand Theft Auto 3, minus the cars and outside environment.


The visuals are in the same league as GTA3, but still manage to appear looking completely different and having their own identity. The game crams hundreds of people running around a mall at a frantic pace, and surprisingly, there is not much slowdown visible at all. Most of the characters in the game have their own look. All the characters are detailed very good, not down to the tiniest detail, but enough to make out who’s who. The multistory mall the game’s set in looks very close to what one is like in the real world. It comes complete with escalators, and a variety of stores. Everything is animated at a fluid pace, and looks perfectly fine, except for the excess amount of gore. It is humorous to look at the amounts of blood shooting out of the people after you beat them to a bloody pulp (not that it’s fun to do in real life). The opening loading times are shorter than the ones in GTA3, but still a bit on the long side. The game has very simple menus, and you’ll find yourself going into a game in no time.


The sound is a bit of a disappointment, in my opinion. The sound effects are pretty much all that’s done well in the game. All the gun shots, punches, and screams are what they sound like you expect them to be. I like it how fellow rioters yell at you when you get in their way. Remember all the great mission briefings in GTA3, complete with all that great voice acting? If you do, you’ll be disappointed to find out that Rock Star has taken out the voice acting, and all we get for mission briefings are text boxes. Now I don’t have anything against that, but I get a feeling the game was rushed when you consider GTA3 had loads of voice acting for mission briefings that the development team could have easily added in. For background music, you just get some simple little tunes which you don’t even notice with everybody yelling at you through the riot.

Game play

The controls are fairly simple. You only have a few options available to you by running by just holding the analog pad, and running faster by holding down another button. Action features available to you are buttons used for punching, picking up weapons, and using your weapons. I picked up the default control configuration for the game in no time, and I am sure you will do the same.

The game has two modes of play available for you to choose from. In Chaos mode you have a time limit to get as high of a score as possible. You attain this by getting points by murdering cops, robbing stores, and just about doing anything else your average rioter would. The other mode is called Revolution. In Revolution mode, you go around the mall running missions for your boss much like in GTA3. The missions range from guarding fellow criminals while they hijack computer systems to killing certain individuals carrying classified information. Most of the missions are a cakewalk, but some are a bit on the challenging side.

Replay Value

The game keeps track of your high scores for both game modes, so you can always play again to beat your highest scores. Chaos mode is fun for a quick play to learn the controls, and Revolution will provide several hours of game play. For some weird reason, a two-player mode would’ve seemed to fit in splendidly for this type of game if they added one, but none is to be found.

In Brief

+: Graphics have their own identity, simple controls, missions provide hours of game play

-: Weak in the audio department, no two player mode, game feels rushed

The Final Ratings Rundown

Graphics: 8.7
Sound: 5.5
Game play: 8.0
Replay Value: 6.7

Overall: 7.2

Rounded to fit GameFAQs Score: 7


State of Emergency is a good game, but no where in the same league as GTA3. The game definitely feels rushed so Rock Star could capitalize on the game by the success of GTA3. Voice acting should’ve been in the mission briefings, and a two-player mode seemed like an avoided feature. A lot of people probably played GTA3 and thought this game is a lot like it. I recommend you rent this one first, and then decide on purchasing it.

Back to Gruel's GameFAQs Review Page