Destruction Derby 2

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a game by Psygnosis
Genre: Sports
Platforms: PC (1996), Playstation, PSX
Editor Rating: 7.1/10, based on 7 reviews, 8 reviews are shown
User Rating: 8.4/10 - 5 votes
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See also: Vehicle Combat Games, Destruction Derby Games
Destruction Derby 2
Destruction Derby 2
Destruction Derby 2

People Who Play Computer es can be broadly subdivided two distinct types. Those who take due care in what they're doing and those who don't. When some people first get their hands on a driving game, they spend hours poring over the manual trying to make sure they know exactly what does what, which buttons to press, which are most likely to be the best cars for a particular track, and what the most successful tactics are likely to be in any given situation. They might spend a little time checking out the courses, then a little more time making sure they've tweaked their chosen car, where possible, for the circuit they're about to use. Then they'll start to play... Put them in front of a flight sim, or a city-planning game, and they'll take exactly the same care.

Then there are the other sort of people. As soon as this type get their hands on a driving game, they load it up and launch straight in. They pick whatever car is the default, and the first track on the list. As soon as the race starts, they turn round to face the wrong way and, putting their foot to the floor, race off in the wrong direction in an attempt to cause the biggest multiple pile-up in the history of motor-sport.


The original Destruction Derby took an approach that nobody had ever thought of before in a racing game - or if they had, they'd dismissed it. There'd been games before in which you could damage your car if you smashed into something else - notably the very first version of Indycar, Indianapolis 500, in which people actually used to save their crashes and show them to their chums. The devastation was incredible, for the time - shards of polygons flying all oter the shop.


So here's the follow-up. And it's much improved. For a start, the graphics are vastly superior to those in the original. There's real-time lighting and full gourard shading on all the cars; the cars themselves are far more detailed, and the collisions a lot better as a result. You get proper debris in a crash -your bonnet flies off, your boot becomes a spoiler, then a flying saucer... your car can even lose its wheels (which makes lovely little sparks fly out if you keep on driving: always nice as a treat for the kiddies). Oh, and you can come into the pits for repairs, now, too. If you're a big girly.

The tracks are better, too. Where the first game's were narrow, looked S a bit like they'd been built through the middle of a shanty town out of old advertising hoardings and had all those difficult to negotiate corners, the new ones are lush. They're longer, and so much wider you might be indulging in a lovely drive across the African veldt.

(Except you don't get loads of other cars trying to reverse over your in<ar stereo on the African veldt. I don't think you do, anyway... if we have any readers in the African veldt, write in and let us know.) There are a lot more features on the tracks. Features that will make life more difficult for you, like lumps and jump ramps and trenches and sheer drops and stuff. There are more crossover sections, more tunnels, banked corners, Wipeoutstyle alternative routes... one of the est jumps has you barrel-rolling, James Bond-stunt style. And if you get it wrong, you revolve lengthwise, which is rather more disconcerting (see film-style panel able). And the collisions are better.

Instead of just crashing, you can flip, roll (and roll and roll), and spin in the air. In one of the destruction derby bowls you can get so high you come down with angels' toilet paper draped over the windscreen.


There are one or two things which are a bit irritating - not the least of which is the direct porting of the way you have to save and load games and control set-ups. All the menus in which you have to enter information, such as when you choose your name for the Championship mode, are a complete pain in the arse: okay, we know the game was originally designed for the PlayStation - but on the pc we have new-fangled things like keyboards and hard drives. So having to select letters from a block and type them in one at a time with the press of a button is a wind-up. As for having a bank of memory blocks to save games into in the same way as a psx... The other thing is the lack of a network option. Psygnosis have confirmed it won't be on the version when it's released, but will come out on a free patch later on.

This isn't as much of a problem as it would have been with the first version, because the one-player options have a lot more to them. Many people don't have access to a network anyway, but it does smack slightly of a game that's being rushed out.


Anyway, as far as the gameplay goes, not much has changed. There are still the options to race properly for position, to race for a combination of position and get extra points for smashing the shit out of other people, or just gather round in a big circle and try to kill people by driving through their front windscreen.

The one major difference in the gameplay is the level of difficulty. It's rather like the first version of Wipeout, in that it takes a long time to get the hang of handling the car. Most people around here are pretty handy at driving games, but we all found it difficult to get anywhere at first. Perseverance is the key.

Overall, though, the game is a huge improvement over the first version. The graphics are better, the tracks are better, the way the cars handle is better. In case you're wondering why, in that case, it has a lower score than the first version, it's quite simple: things have moved on, and racing games in particular have made a huge leap from the time the first version of this came out. Whether you want arcade thrills and spills, or a proper simulation, there are already a great deal of very high quality games available - and more on the way. This, however, is still a much-improved game with a lot to offer, and provides a good long-term challenge. Well worth a look.

Download Destruction Derby 2


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

Destruction Derby 2 combines adrenaline-filled racing with unbelievable crashes, carnage, and chaos. It out-destroys, out-explodes, and simply outdoes its predecessor on every level. Are you ready to be the Derby champ, or will you merely be roadkill?


You can go for ultimate destruction on seven tracks of Wreck'n Racing, or race a more civilized (but still violent) tour on the stock-car circuit. The Destruction Derby puts 20 cars in one of four bowls for a war of automobile attrition, where the last car still running wins.

Gameplay & Fun Factor

New to this year's tracks are jumps, where you can flip 360 degrees and still land on your tires ready to resume the race. There are also pit stops and a cliff in one of the Derby bowls so you can push your opponents off the edge. DD2 will provide fast, steel-twisting action and hours of therapeutic relief to angry drivers frustrated with overcrowded freeways.


The graphics are a huge improvement over those in the original DD. The behind-the-wheel and overhead views put you closer to the action than last year's game. Wrecked autos catch on fire, and smoke swirls when their radiators blow. Some of the background skies and terrains are eerie, raising the level of tension during the race.

Last year at this time, new PlayStation owners were surprised by the recent release of Psygnosis' hot new racing title with a touch of mindless violence. It was accepted with open arms by players looking for a title that incorporated more action with an already good racing base. Gamers' premonitions were not far off their mark. Destruction Derby sparked an interest in mindless racing and violence not commonly seen in previous titles.

The original Destruction Derby gave players multiple race types, three different cars and a gathering of tracks to explore. Now with the appearance of a new title on the horizon, players may be asking themselves: Besides a few new tracks, what can a second version add to this already fairly complete title that the previous one didn't include? The answer is: game engine evolution. Although the basis for the action remains basically similar to the predecessor, the improvements lie mostly in the technical aspects below the surface. Once a player looks deeply into the game elements and pays attention to all the modifications to the actual engine, it is obvious that Psygnosis put time and effort into the development of the title. Instead of just riding it out to make a quick buck like many developers are known to do, in the case of a sequel title, they have actually changed key parts of the game's base to include a more impressive list of features.

The most obvious changes to the second version are the new tracks and the number of bowls for the Destruction Circuit to take place in.

Serious fans of the original will also notice the tracks have been lengthened an additional 1 3/4 miles over the original maximum 1/4 mile. In this new segment of track, the players will experience banked corners, tunnels and hills, as well as a number of jumps that allow the players to complete some impressive aerial maneuvers unseen in the original. These in-race features are the first to catch players' eyes and draw them in with additional bells and whistles after they have already been hooked.

Being based on a title that revolves around destruction, one would assume that there should be more road debris around the track, as well as more nasty effects that happen to your vehicle after a good hit. Well, Psygnosis paid attention to your suggestions and wishes and have incorporated new disastrous effects that include smoke, sparks and flames, as well as exposed engines from the loss of a hood. Debris seen flying off a car can also be seen in the form of metal, hoods and trunk lids and even wheels themselves. You can only guess what losing a wheel can do to your car's handling performance. Hits like these can quickly have the player doing nothing more than watching the rest of the racers pass them like they were standing still (which they are).

Graphical elements have the same look and feel as the original, making the title truly feel like an extension of the first version. They remain sharp and clear enough to make players feel like they have been transplanted from the sofa to the racing seat and harnessed in. Frame rate is also surprisingly high, incorporating a fast, intensive feel-again making the action come alive off the screen.

The cars have also more than doubled the number of polygons they use, adding a more realistic look to their outward appearance. Proof of this can easily be seen in the smooth look of the outsides as well as in the in-car detail, such as roll bars and the engines that keep coming uncovered.

The sound and musical tracks remain basically the same, although this one has been improved to include an even more industrial-type soundtrack. Players will revel in the ability to thrash to the upbeat music as they take out their frustrations on the other racers.

Although the racing tracks are an important part of the title, one should not forget the thrill and excitement caused when multiple cars are locked in a metal-crunching confrontation known as the bowl. This circular arena with banked sides tends to teach players the art of fleeing a battle rather than rushing in head-first. Not the most glamorous aspect of the competition, but a necessity to survive and gather more points by hitting stragglers on the outskirts of the arena. The way players work their way up the point ranking is by either destroying the enemies' cars or by spinning their cars in increments of 90 degrees to win additional points.

Whether you have a hint of fairness in your blood or you are just a dirty rotten scoundrel, when you are behind the wheel, you can race the way you want in DD2. Gaming flexibility as well as a pumped-up game engine make this title the one to watch this holiday season. We'll just have to sit back and wait to see if the sequel sells more than the original. With a title this complete, this is a very real possibility. What a way to spend an evening; searching out, trying to destroy the cars of the ones you love.

The follow-up to one of the most intense racing games of 1995, Psygnosis' Destruction Derby 2 is smoking the tires once again and is taking to the track with speed.

Apart from the spectacular crash sequences comes the addition of some incredible new tracks. An improved racing model will feature an advanced 3-D

engine along with some new banking sections in a new area entitled the open "Arena Bowl."

In this version, cars won't only collide causing smoke to billow from both vehicles, but this year the cars will actually flip over, roll and cartwheel their way down the tracks in spectacular fashion. This year there is even a pit area where drivers can repair damaged vehicles. Another awesome feature is the "Stunt Mode," where you can rig up your own dare-to devil stunt to try to set up an incredible aa crash sequence.

This time around, flames, flying sparks and large pieces of W debris fly through the f air after each impact.

It's time to get smashed up with Destruction Derby 2.

  • MANUFACTURER - Psvgnosis
  • THEME - Racing
  • NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1 or 2


The first game I ever bought for my Playstation was Destruction Derby. At the time, this was one of only a handful of games out for the system. I played and played that game. After just dropping $400 on the system and a game, I couldn't afford to buy any other games for quite some time. So I just played Destruction Derby. I invited my friends over to play. I invited my family over to play. Everyone loved this game.

Here we are, a year and a half and over 150 games later, and people who have never played the Playstation who visit me always love Destruction Derby. I have all the new games, but people always want to play this old one. This is why Psygnosis has made a sequel. There were problems in the first game, as expected, from such an early-released title on a new system. Now, developers are into their second- and even third-generation games so they should have a better handle on the Playstation and what it can do. They have definitely figured out how to program the Playstation.

Destruction Derby 2 has all the options that made the first game a success. This time around, more effort was placed on the racing aspect of the game versus the demolition derby, but don't worry, there is still plenty of smashing and bashing fun to be had.


Destruction Derby 2 is almost like having two different games packed into one title. The first mode is the racing mode. This mode can be played either as a standard stock car race or a wrecking race. The stock car race is geared toward completing laps with the fastest time and finishing ahead of the pack. The wrecking race also makes you go for the finish line, but adds extra points for doing damage to your opponents' cars along the way. A new feature to Destruction Derby 2 is the pit stops. In the stock car race, you can stop in the pits and fix damage to your car as often as you like. In the wrecking race, you can only pit one time, but it is a very valuable stop because the cars are constantly smashing into you.

The one thing you will notice about this title is that a greater emphasis was placed on the racing aspect of the game. This game could stand alone towards the top of the heap in the racing genre. The cars control quite well. The only problem is that if you get nudged by any car in the race, you will always spin out and end up facing the wrong direction. Getting turned around in the right direction is a somewhat laborious process. Most of the races are very competitive, and you are always one good lap away from the front of the pack or one bad spin out away from the back.

Destruction Derby 2 has four different stock tracks that include sharp cornering, narrow corridors and even high flying jumps. All of the tracks are a blast to race on and every race is different. In all modes of the game, there are constant car parts flying from incident or purposeful contact. If you make it a whole race without loosing your hood, you will be in good shape. As the race progresses, the unlucky drivers whose cars have failed them will sit smoking in the infield of the track, and the really unlucky drivers that could not get their cars off the track will be scattered on the track. This adds a whole new aspect to the racing game. If your front end has sustained considerable damage and you fly around a corner and hit a smoking car with full force, this could mean the end of your race. Also littered across the track are car parts that were once attached to the cars racing the course.

The second part of the game is the good old demolition derby. This was what made the first title such a hit. I would rarely do the races on the first title. I went straight for the Bowl and some smashing fun. The Bowl is back, but renamed and refined. In the middle of the bowl you will find a jump that sends you flying. To add to the realism of the demolition derby, cars can now flip over, spin in the air and even catch fire. The car parts are constantly flying and you will feel like your car has a target drawn on the passenger door. I have to admit that sometimes simpler is better. The designers tried to step up the pace of this race by about a hundredfold, and what you get is about 15 seconds of the hottest action and then it is over. I will admit that in the original title, it got a bit tedious when you were one of the final cars remaining and your steering was going out. They sure fixed this problem, because you can't stay alive long enough to worry about this.

They did do a good job in adding the cars flipping and spinning in the air, but they may have gone just a bit too far. Watching replays show cars thrown 30 feet in the air. This is a bit ridiculous. I think that this would have been better if they would have taken the first game, stepped up the action a bit, added the effects like fire and losing the hood, and left the basic engine intact. Unfortunately, what you have now is a hyperactive 15 seconds with flying cars, smoke and then it's over. You really don't have enough time to get involved before it is over.


Destruction Derby 2 has cleaned up the graphics from the original title. Gone are the breakup problems, and they've added fire and flips. The cars are more detailed and the tracks look very cool. I love the look of my car as it is flying over jumps and landing with a front-ended smash. The parts of the cars that are constantly flying are now somewhat recognizable. For example, you will see a hood fly by or the lid of someone's trunk lying at the edge of the course. The fans lining the track are very animated and seem to be cheering you on the whole way through the race.

Bottom Line

Destruction Derby 2 fixed the problems with the original title and broke what was good in the first. I really enjoy the racing part of the game now, and actually get frustrated trying to race in the destruction derby. As a racing game, the wrecking race adds a cool twist to the traditional stock car race. The graphics are top notch and I really enjoy the selection of tracks available. This game is a solid title all the way around, if they would just tone the energy level down on the destruction derby. The strange thing is, I keep going back to it and trying to master it so I guess that says something.


So I got this new system -- a P5-133 with a 4MB ATI 3D Pro Turbo and 64 MB of 60ns EDO RAM. It smokes the Dell 166 I've got at work, but to give it that little bit of special "Home PC" flavor and remind myself I'm not actually at work when I'm at home, I needed to install a cool new game to challenge that video card. I was considering installing one of my favorite games from last year, Destruction Derby, when Chad emailed me and said "Hey, we just got the new Destruction Derby and it's for Win 95. Wanna review it?"

"Will do," I typed (we never really talk).

ATI 3D Pro Turbo yawned. "Bring it on," she hummed.

So, in a nutshell, here's the good stuff you get for your money: "Designed for Win 95," 35 MB worth of two pretty cool AVIs (Intro.avi and outro.avi), lots more tracks and better graphics. On the negative side, you get even more annoying commentary (if you can believe that), an even less intuitive UI, and you'll be lucky if your joystick works (Win 95's joystick calibration tool thought mine worked just fine, but DD2 didn't even know it was there). Oh, and when you collide with someone really hard, you usually go flying up in the air about a hundred feet. I'm no psychiatrist, but I really think this game may be best for overcoming fear of falling.


From the console game "alphabet screen" where you enter your name, to the lack of any control in the "replay" area, the UI is for me what really drags this game down. True, the UI isn't really the game per se, but it shows an overall lack of attention to detail. Hint number one to Psygnosis' designers: The ESCAPE key is not intuitive navigation! Maybe I'm an idiot, but I can't count how many times I looked at the buttons at the bottom of the screen and said to myself, "Okay, I can choose from that blob of stuff or that blob of stuff, but neither of them look like forward to the next menu or backward to the race." As for the replay, all you get to do is watch the same race from the same vantage point as you just ran it, except this time you don't have any control.

Once you get past the menu system, though, the game's not all that horrible. The races are fairly long, and even if you fall behind at the start you may still catch up by the end, once other cars start doing the fiberglass tango and then stopping for a post-coital smoke alongside the road. Although winnable, it's not nearly as easy in this version to score points by wiping out your fellow drivers. In fact, I don't really have any idea how I scored all the points I did. In version 1 you could be sure you'd scored when you heard a scream or a "You'll regret that!" or a maniacal laugh. Now all you hear is one indistinct yell. And okay, when I just went back to the game to hear the sound again (it's Win 95, after all), the game crashed on me when I landed at the bottom of a thousand-foot jump, but the music is still playing. Neat-o. That actually makes this easy on me -- I'm feeling less and less like I need to justify such a low score. In fact, I'm thinking of lowering it. Better move on.

Multiplayer Support

Yeah, sure it supports multiplayer. Just like the manual says: "You and up to nine friends can race individually against the rest of the Destruction Derby crew." All you have to do is enter all your names in the alphabet screen, and when it's your turn you just have to take your seat in front of the computer while your nine friends watch. Gee, we sure have come a long way since pinball!

Originality/Cool Features

If you like wackiness in your auto racing or you think flying through the air and landing on the side of a cliff is cooler than driving, you'd probably like this game. Evel Knievel would really dig it. I don't think "wackiness" was the intended effect, but do you remember that racing game from about 5 years ago where you tried to kill everyone and you bought missiles and stuff for your car and you went 900 miles an hour and when you hit a bump you flew about 5 miles? Deathmatch 2000? Deathrace? Deathsomething? It reminds me of that.


The graphics are 320x240, which isn't great—but if you try real hard you can pretend those big chunks of color on the canyon walls are actually just 8" x 8" rocks. True, 320x240 as a default isn't a bad thing considering that not everyone has a 4 MB SGRAM 3D video card. I imagine if it were 640x480 by default, a lot of people would be very upset, but if Duke Nukem, Quake and others can offer a choice of screen resolutions, why can't Destruction Derby 2? In fact, the graphics were at times too fast. In Red Pike Arena, the actual "Destruction Derby" site, things move so quickly that you can't really see other cars to hit them. If you try to turn around to ram them with your rear bumper, the "camera" doesn't turn nearly fast enough so you never really know where you're going.


Yes, the commentator is even more annoying than the Robin Leach-esque character from DD1. "Hey! Watch the paint work!" was my least favorite, followed by some weird kind of "Arrrgh!" I actually missed the other drivers' yells and curses.

The major bonus with this game is that every time it crashes under Win 95, the music continues so you can go on with other tasks to the pounding beat of thrill-a-minute industrial bass lines.

Installation and Setup

Installation is clean and uses Win 95's UninstallShield, so uninstall (executed permanently just a few seconds ago) was clean, too. Setup worked, but had the same kind of unintuitive menu system as the rest of the game.

System Requirements

Pentium 75 Processor, 8 MB RAM (DOS), 16 MB RAM (Windows 95), 2X CD-ROM drive, PCI, SVGA adapter, SoundBlaster and compatibles

Bottom Line

Your best bet is to find Destruction Derby 1 bundled free with one of the new 3D video cards. I saw one just the other day. If you don't need a new video card and you really have to crunch some metal, pick up DD1 anyway.

Bigger, better, faster, more: That's the manta being chanted by the Reflections team working on Destruction Derby 2. They promise a racer for the PlayStation that'll blow the doors off the original game.

Geared-Up Gameplay

Not that Destruction Derby was a bad game, but Reflections has completely rewritten the original game's programming, giving the sequel a speedy new engine and more of a 3D feel. One of the most noticeable improvements is in the tracks themselves. They're much longer (up to eight times as long, in some cases) and wider. Expect seven tracks plus four Destruction Derby Bowls. Despite all the graphical enhancements, DD2 still moves as quickly as ever, it still has 20 cars per race, and it still supports a two-player link.

Track Sounds

Paul Page, NBC Sports' Indy 500 commentator, calls the action, which should be an improvement over the English actor who voiced the first Destruction Derby. Add in a new metal soundtrack that replaces the techno-pop of the first game, and DD2 looks ready to rock!

Double the Graphics

Graphically, Reflections is putting the pedal to the metal. DD2 doubles the number of polygons that were in the original, so the visual details should be sharper throughout. The tracks have been given hills, banked corners, and jumps, and the wrecks are some of the best in the business. Cars flip and roll, parts fly off after a collision, and disabled opponents litter the tracks.

Gentlemen, start your engines, and get ready for, the most metal-twisting, piston-pulverizing, chaotic carnage you've seen this side of Scary Larry on the freeway. The original Destruction Derby looks like a mere hubcap compared to the gold-rimmed gameplay and trunkful of new features of Destruction Derby 2. This high-performance sequel includes two racing circuits and seven tracks that are eight times longer than its predecessor, along with new jump ramps, pits, hills, and tunnels.

If the heart-pounding racing doesn't fill your tank with enough adrenaline, you can always test your driving skill (and stomach) in the infamous Destruction Derby arena, where you attempt to survive for as long as possible as 19 opponents try to pound your automobile into shredded steel. Definitely not for the faint of heart or Sunday drivers, Destruction Derby 2 takes high speed hit-and-run collisions to the next level of gaming and good times.


  • Stay away from the edge in Death Bowl, or the race will be over in a matter of seconds.
  • In Chalk Canyon, the key to the race is landing the first jump, and not falling into the pit.
  • Use the brake wisely when you feel like you're losing control, or you might spin yourself right out of the race.
  • Sometimes it's better to start the Destruction Derby bowls in reverse than to simply plow into every car head-on.


You race along nicely rendered tracks lined with missing hoods, burning cars, and rolling tires. The light sourcing in the background is amazing, but there's too much breakup in the road.


A hard-rockin' soundtrack fuels this racer, but the lively announcer starts to grate on your nerves after a couple of laps.


Although it adds to the realism of the race, steering your vehicle becomes more difficult with every crash. New pit stops enable you to repair your car before it's too late.

Fun Factor

Car-crunching excitement and new features that burn rubber from the get-go combine to crown Destruction Derby 2 the champion of motorized mayhem.

Snapshots and Media

Playstation Screenshots

See Also

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