Postal 2

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Postal 2

Postal 2 is a first person shooter video game that was created by the company Running With Scissors, released originally in April 2003 for systems running Windows. The game is now available on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems. It is the second installment in the Postal quartet series. Postal 2 was faced with mass amounts of controversy due to the violent actions the player can decide to take part in. The game also received mass controversy for violence against animals, homophobia and racial/ethnic stereotypes, as well as drug and alcohol content. The game also features high amounts of inappropriate language and swearing. Despite being highly controversial and receiving poor reviews from players and critics alike, the game has managed to cultivate a cult following. The game has had five expansion packs available, with the latest one being released in 2015.


The story of the game features the main character, “Postal Dude” running errands in the town of Paradise, Arizona. He lives in a trailer with his wife. The game follows Postal Dude as he sets out to perform a set of errands each day of the week, from Monday to Friday. Postal Dude is interrupted often by non player characters attacking him. Technically, the game is able to be finished without ever using violence, however it is difficult and the player character is repeatedly put into situations that one would assume would demand violence. Throughout the game, the player character encounters a variety of wacky and offensive characters that challenge their ability to accomplish each of their errands. The game has the player do tasks such as picking up their paycheck from work, cashing a check at the bank, and getting milk, as well as many others, which turn violent.[1] When the Postal Dude goes to pick up his paycheck, he is fired and protesters converge on the property to attack the workers. When he goes to the bank, robbers attack. Other tasks that the player must perform include peeing on the Postal Dude’s father’s grave, encountering homicidal anti-book protesters at the library when returning a library book, being attacked by Al Qaeda in a church, and curing a case of Gonorrhea, as well as other tasks. The game ends on Friday with the apocalypse taking place, and the player must survive as they make their way back to the trailer.

Expansion Packs

Postal 2 has had five expansion packs. Running with Scissors released an updated version of the game called Postal 2: Share the Pain, which featured a new multiplayer mode in the game. Since 2008 it has been included in the base game. The second expansion pack, titled "Apocalypse Weekend," was released in 2004. It includes a sequel to the events of the original game. The player controls the Postal Dude after the events of Postal 2 as they navigate through the post apocalyptic world to recover his dog and his trailer. The expansion follows the Postal Dude through the weekend following the original game's events, as he fights zombies, terrorists, and military personnel. A third expansion, titled "Corkscrew Rules!" was released in 2005 by Avalon Style Entertainment, features a man named Corkscrew who discovers that his penis was amputated. The player is sent on a quest to recover Corkscrew's missing genitalia. The game was originally only released in Russia and Japan, however an English version was released for free via Steam in 2017. Postal 2: Eternal Damnation is the fourth expansion pack created for Postal 2, developed by Resurrection-Studios and released in 2005. The pack is a total conversion of Postal 2, changing the plot to feature a man named John Murray who is in a mental asylum. The final expansion pack released for Postal 2, Paradise Lost, was released in 2015. The story of Paradise Lost takes place 12 years after the events of Postal 2, in which the Postal Dude navigates the post apocalyptic world left from the events of the original game in search of his dog, Champ.

Ethical Issues


Postal 2 is an extremely violent game and faced mass criticism and controversy. Postal 2 features several weapon types, including melee weapons, handguns, shotguns, machine guns, fuel-based, projectiles, toxic weapons, snipers, launchers, and napalm as well as other various weapon types. The player is able to murder any non player character that they find on the street, including police officers, using any of the weapons that are provided. The murders are graphic, with blood being shown. and in the cases of explosions, body parts being blown off. This has led to Postal 2 being banned in New Zealand, with the reasoning being the high amounts of violence as well as violence against animals. The game developers defend the game against its claims of high violence, stating that the game is able to be played without ever performing a violent act, however the player is placed in situations where violence is encouraged and is the easiest solution to the problem. The player is also allowed to commit suicide by putting a grenade in their mouth after pulling the pin, causing them to explode. When prompted whether the player would like to commit suicide or not, they are given the options "Press to end it all" or "press to wuss out," causing the choice not to commit suicide to appear as a cowardly decision.

Animal Abuse

The Postal Dude has the ability to urinate on animals and kill animals such as dogs, cats, elephants, cows, monkeys, and dinosaurs. The player can use cats as a silencer for their guns by sticking the barrel of their gun into the cat’s anus. The player has the option to urinate on anything, including animals. The player has the option to set the elephant found in the game on fire. The player is highly encouraged to kill animals during a part of the game where they encounter hostile junkyard dogs. Animal violence has been cited as one of the reasons for the game being banned in New Zealand. [2]

Homophobia and Racial and Ethnic Stereotypes

Postal 2 has several instances of homophobia built into the game. The player can use an arcade machine that has a known homophobic slur built into the name; homosexual non player characters are put into the game as stereotypes, and are available for the player to kill. Henk Kroll, who is an editor of a gay newspaper in the Netherlands, proposed a ban on Postal 2, arguing for the game being problematic for presenting homosexual people as a stereotype that the player can kill. The player also has the ability to open fire on gay pride and minority parades.[3] There are examples of racial and ethnic stereotyping in the game as well. Middle eastern men can be seen perusing the library, looking at books about terrorism, before they open fire on the player.[4] The player is also attacked by Al Qaeda while at the church. There are Asian stereotypes presented in a Chinese restaurant the player must go to as well.

Drugs and Alcohol Content

Image of the Health Pipe item, source:
The player is able to consume an item called the "Health Pipe," which causes the player to regain health temporarily and gain extra strength. When the affects of the Health Pipe are over, however, the player loses health and has a mini heart attack unless they consume another Health Pipe. According to the Postal 2 wiki, the Health Pipe is actually a crack cocaine pipe. [5] Vodka is also featured in the game as a replacement for the Health Pipe. Upon consuming vodka, the player regains all of their health. In the original game, consuming vodka had no negative consequences. Only in the newer, Steam version of the game were consequences added for consuming vodka, including impaired aiming and withdrawal affects that cause health damage. [6]


  1. Postal 2 Wiki