3 thoughts on “Grand Theft Auto IV

  1. 215 of 262 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    A Worthy Member of the GTA Series, April 29, 2008
    = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    This review is from: Grand Theft Auto IV (Video Game)
    I adore the GTA series and have been looking forward to the release of GTA IV for a *long* time. The developers know that a very high bar would be set for this one, and you can see the time and effort they poured into every last detail from the very first moment of the opening credits. It is more like a movie than a game. This “immersive movie” quality stays with you through every moment of gameplay.

    You walk down the street and the shadows dapple through the overhead bridge grid. Dusk begins to fall and the sky gets that orange golden glow, the shadows lessen.

    Voices show the same attention to detail. You’ve got a variety of languages thrown in, plus accents galore. There’s the Long Island drawl, the Rastafarian’s lilt, and of course the hard edge of eastern Europe.

    Your main character is Nico, fresh off the boat and coming in to Liberty City (i.e. New York City) to see his cousin Roman. They are eastern European and rather poor. This of course is going to change soon, as Nico moves his way up in the world.

    My boyfriend’s from New York City so we were amused at how they kept the landscapes identical but renamed Brooklyn to Broker, Manhattan to Algonquin and so on. There was one time we were walking down the streets and had lost track of where we were. “Looks like the Bronx” he commented off-handedly. We zoomed out. Sure enough!

    I do have to say that the people on the streets of this game swear far more than the average people we pass in the real NYC though!

    Which brings up an important point. GTA IV went straight for the “Mature” rating with this one. This is clearly meant for mature gamers ages 17 and over. There are strip clubs. There are violent battles. There is more swearing than pretty much any other game out there. Adults love this as they love the Sopranos and Scarface – but any parent getting this for a minor should know what they’re getting into.

    But that being said, as a game for adults, this is *awesome*. There are just so many little touches that shine. You can play bowling games with your date. You can make choices between alternate choices which affect how people feel about you. When you get near a railing, you can side jump over it, smoothly. You carry a cell phone and gather contacts for use. You can visit internet cafes. You have a variety of radio stations to listen to, plus TV stations to watch.

    This is easily a game you can play for hundreds of hours – then go back and start over again and get another new experience by making different choices.

    I can’t get over how gorgeous the game is, and how smoothly it plays. You grab a knife from an enemy and use it to take him down. You drive along the Hudson and watch the lights of the carnival shine. You listen to your favorite songs on the radio while the neon lights of the city drift by. You really begin to relate to the characters, to understand their personalities, to connect with them. It makes the choices you make have meaning and emotion.

    As much as I adore many other games – Halo, Mass Effect, etc. – I really think this is the first game that makes you feel that you are in a movie. The graphics draw you in. The voices are amazingly well done and varied. The plot draws you in, having you wonder who to trust, having you wonder what is going on with the characters.

    Highly recommended. I’m doing a full walkthrough for the game so feel free to ask any questions you wish!

    I want to add a note – some players are having trouble with understanding the dialogue. I watch a ton of international films so I didn’t have any issues. However, if some of the language is too accented for you, there is a subtitles option. Just turn that on and you’ll always know what they are saying.


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  2. 49 of 61 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    open-world fans.. our time has come!, April 30, 2008
    Raul Duke “Gonzo HST” (Pittsburgh) –

    = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    This review is from: Grand Theft Auto IV (Video Game)

    When Grand Theft Auto III came out(the reason i got a PS2 way back in 2001), i knew something great was in the mix. it was a sign of change in the gaming industry. it showed us there could be more to games than levels, more than high scores, and more than even a good story. it showed us a virtual world you could become totally engulfed in(outside of RPG’s). a world where you could go anywhere and do anything(although that was just mostly stealing cars and shooting pedestrians in those days). over the years they’ve made some serious improvements, from the bikes and helicopters of vice city, to the jets and ability to duck and roll/ manually aim in san andreas(finally!) and now their first venture onto this generation has finally arrived, and its a great day in the gaming world

    the series continues to awe with this installment, even in this day and age in video games. Graphically speaking, it is simply beautiful. its amazing how much attention went into every aspect of this world. theres cracks and pot holes ranging in depth in the road, and varying curb heights. vehicle damage is very impressive, from dents and scratches to a hole for each bullet that hits. the lighting system is amazing, with day/night cycles and a rotating sun throughout the day. naturally the game doesnt have the detail of say Call of Duty 4, but you could fit like 50 Call of Duty 4 maps in this city! its that huge. you have to take the size of a game into consideration when rating the graphics, thats been a given for how long now?? just to clear things up for the clowns complaining the graphics.

    when you walk out the door theres so much to be done you might want to keep a checklist for the days. although what you actually choose to do is up to you. causing chaos is always an option. you can go bowling, play pool, play darts, get drunk, go to a srip club, get some food, check out the in game internet, and tons more. you could always just surf the channels on your TV.

    your cell phone is a pivotal part of the game. you can call friends and girlfriends for various activities(some are listed above), and if you neglect them for long enough, they’ll call you. you can also call potential employers for jobs.

    theres the standard “go kill this guy” and “go get this” but they have been very entertaining anyway so far. theres much more depth to many missions, including stealth. one example is having to steal a cop car, then proceed to pull over different shipping trucks until you find the one full of TV’s.

    gameplay is vastly improved. the cover system is great, allowing you to quickly roll and protect yourself behind random cars, trash cans, and basically anything else thats big enough.

    the game has a much more realistic feel than previous entries. you’ll find yourself making sure theres no cops around before committing crimes. the star system is still here, but this time your wanted level is radius based, and if you can get far enough away from all cops, or at leased out of sight, your wanted level will go down. its honestly genius. i narrowly escaped one by jumping the guard rail and running down a steep hill, only to see another driving my way in the distance. quickly ducking into the alley behind a dumpster, i watched him roll by and waited for my stars to begin to fade. some cars are locked and you’ll need to break a window to get in and proceed to hotwire it.

    -for all you parents out there, the content is more mature than previous entries. you get a pretty good look at the in-car action with the street workers.. hehe.. and “coarse” language is used every couple minutes(at leased). the violence and blood looks more realistic now too. thats usually not what you guys worry about so much though.

    my only real complaints are the hand to hand combat(its the most solid of the series but San Andreas seemed to have more move depth), and the fact that you cant go into more buildings. dont get me wrong, theres TONS of places to go and things to do, but i was hoping for even more. there have been waaay too many things that made San Andreas great and were simply missing here. no car customization, less clothes, less weapons, no property to buy, and more.. in some ways its one step forward and two steps back.

    i wont elaborate on the story much, as its already been done heavily. basically your an illegal immigrant from eastern europe. your cousin convinced you to come to America with his stories of mansions and sports cars. when you arrive things arent quite as described. you start in the darkest, grittiest part of Liberty City. a pocket full of change and a head full or dreams. what happens next is in your hands..


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  3. 73 of 97 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    GTA 4 Really?, January 1, 2009
    = Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
    This review is from: Grand Theft Auto IV (Video Game)

    Before I start ranting, I just want to say that GTA4, as a game of its own, is actually quite good, but as a GTA game, it has shortcomings. So Let’s kick this review off right.

    Graphics: GTA4 has rather well defined graphics. It is definitely much better from it’s predecessors. Among many of the improvements graphically; people in the car actually move as they speak, blood stains actually appear on your car if you hit people, hitting newspaper stands actually cause newspapers to go flying everywhere, and some of the text on those flying newspapers is actually legible. So, suffice it to say, GTA is graphically a good game. Is it as good as all the other games out there, not really, but it is an open ended gameplay where you can go anywhere, and as far as that goes, it is pretty great.

    Glitches: The game has quite a few glitches, as most of them do, which cause random events from a car to start flying in circles to your legs falling through the floor. It is expected in most games of this style I suppose, but is worth mentioning that these are no fewer than any previous GTA Game.

    Setting: Taking place in a new liberty city similar to New York, the game offers little in the ways of variety. You go from tight closed off streets with big buildings to tight closed off streets with really big buildings. It is a bit claustrophobic, giving you very little room to just drive and speed up to top speed. San Andreas was expansive, giving you three cities completely different in appearance, numerous small towns, mountains, forests, and deserts. 4 gives you one city, nothing else.

    Car Gameplay: The cars in this game seem much more difficult to control, was this done for realism sake, I am not sure. However, sometimes, some cars have incredibly poor traction and put you into terrible accidents when you think you have plenty of time to stop. It is hard to tell which cars are better, as appearance doesn’t always suggest driving style. A couple of added things kind of make the gameplay funner. Most park cars are locked now, so you actually break the window, unlock the car, then actually hotwire it, You can speed up hotwiring, but it usually doesn’t take more than a couple seconds anyway. Also, you can receive damage, fly out the window shield, die in fatal accidents, drive drunk (which always gets a cop on your tail) and even have a car die and won’t start up again. However, many of these events seem random, and you can ram a building at 50 miles an hour and recieve no damage, or hit a fence and 25 miles an hour, fly our your window shield, and have you car land on you. So that kind of sucks.

    Person Gameplay: On a surplus, you can now use cover and hide behind stuff, also peaking out from behind cover to shoot an opponent. You also have a new melee system, which includes kick, punch, and block combos. It isn’t much better than the original system, but it does give you a bit more control over what you are doing to your opponent. However, once you get a couple guns, this becomes almost irrelevant anyway. Everything else is just about the same from previous games.

    Story: The story is OK. I can’t say I feel too passionate about the protagonist, who just doesn’t appeal to me as much as the GTA3 + characters, who were frequently hilarious and likable. Niko revenge story does not seem as passionate as GTA3, and that guy was a mute. He lacks the ambition of VC character, and SA did a better job of displaying that protagonists goals and ideals(protecting his home and family). Besides that, it seems less humorous and more serious of a story. It still has all the jokes from the previous GTAs, I can’t really put my finger on it, but everything in this one just seems more serious. One reviewer believes that this is GTA with a conscious, which I kind of agree with, maybe groups put pressure on Rockstar to make them show the consequences of your actions, since it seems like you’re constantly being reminded that killing, drunk driving, and prostitution are bad.

    The Extras: This is where I feel the game fell. Had this game been the direct sequel from GTA III, I probably would have been a lot easier on it, but VC and SA existed, and this game almost seems to have forgotten that fact. This game almost seems like a stripped version of it’s predecessors. No gang wars, no gambling, no owning businesses, no car collections. Flying has almost been cut out of this game, although I can’t imagine why, it was such a successful feature. Fighting on a flying plane, then para shooting out was the coolest thing ever, not to mention stealing a harrier jet from a battleship. The girlfriend thing from SA was added to, making normal friends too. This is worse, as you now have to maintain relationships with not only your gfs, but any friend you make as well. I also believe the “sex scenes” you get at the end of the date are toned down a bit. I dislike where Rockstar is going with this…

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