I’ve got about five hours in with GTA IV…

… and so far I’m really enjoying it. I’ve not done a whole lot yet, a handful of the missions, two dates with Michelle where we bowled (once) and played billiards (twice), gone to the titty bar with my cousin twice, watched a whole episode of Republican Space Rangers on TV (which was easily worth the price of admission alone), and died three times. I spent a good hour last night just driving around checking out the sights and then I decided to see how big of a car pileup I could cause in one of the traffic circles. Just cause, you know, I could and all.

What I’m most impressed with is the level of detail on what you can do. Things like being able to sit down and watch episodes of shows on TV (albeit very short episodes) is very cool. I’ve not seen it yet, but there’s apparently some cabaret shows and stand up comedians you can go watch perform as well. Or the fact that you can pick up small objects, such as a brick, which you can then throw, such as through a window, for smaller scale mayhem. I’ve not gotten a gun yet, but that hasn’t stopped me from knocking a guy through a window to his death. I’ve already had one moral choice to make (whether or not to kill someone I was sent to kill) which will probably come back to play a role later in the game and offer a bit of replay in the form of making the opposite choice next time. I’ve spent a fair amount of time just walking the streets and taking in the details. It really is impressive.

One thing I’m disappointed with so far is finding the stunt jumps. Because the city is so realistic it’s hard to pick out what would have obviously been a stunt jump in the other games. I think I’ve found one so far, but when I hit it I didn’t get the usual cinematic and my car didn’t land upright so I didn’t successfully complete it. That is, if it was an actual stunt jump. Launching my car off the stunt jumps is what I enjoy the most about this series of games and it seems like the ramps have gotten increasingly harder to find with each release. Hopefully they’ll become easier to spot once I find a couple and have an idea of what they look like.

Overall I’d have to say the game lives up pretty well to the reviews it’s been getting. I don’t know that I’d go as far as to say it’s revolutionary, but it’s definitely a big step up in the evolution of the series. Well worth the price so far.

OK, this is too funny not to include the video so here it is. WARNING: Lots of strong language so probably NSFW:

15 thoughts on “I’ve got about five hours in with GTA IV…

  1. You discover a lot of stunt jumps during missions…

    You’ll be chasing some car down a street you’ve been down a thousand times before but this time you’ll be speeding like a bat out of hell and “accidently” hit a ramp and *bam* you’ve discovered a stunt jump.

  2. Damn, GTA IV looks fantastic. Unfortunately, I don’t have a PS3 or a 360, so I’m stuck waiting for Rockstar to release the PC version.

  3. “Republican Rangers in Spac…Oh Damnit!” almost as good as the morons who posted all the “Ugh, me Republican Mighty Man! Me have witty comment about perceived social inequalities toward average god fearing white Americans! You bong suckers can all rot in hell!” comments on the Youtube page.

  4. The question is… Is it worth buying an Xbox 360? I love the GTA series but I have usually waited for the PC release. The reviews I have seen everywhere have me tempted to go so far as buying an Xbox and the game. My biggest problem is, with any of these systems I tend to play a game, never buy anything for them again and then lament the entire process.

    What are your opinions, if any Les? Is is good enough to worry about in terms of money?

    Obviously I am not placing the monetary decision on you, just wondering if it is one of “those” games that requires my attention.

  5. All I can tell you is that GTA IV was half the reason I bought a PS3. I’m not inclined to buy an Xbox 360 simply because I already have a good gaming PC—and the 34% failure rate on Xbox 360s makes them unappealing—but there are a lot of folks buying it for the 360 for the promised downloadable content. I’m not too worried about that as I’m sure the PS3 version will see DLC as well before too long.

    The game preforms equally well on either platform from what I’ve seen and there are plenty of people buying both the 360 and the PS3 to play it.

  6. Thanks Les. I have been a little worried about the Xbox lifespan. I think it is one of the reasons I have not actually bit the bullet and bought it (and the game) yet. I guess I will just cross my fingers and hope for a PC release.

    Either one would do me to be honest, but with the PS3 being 50 dollars more, it suffers from the same Xbox problem but costs more… Ahh well, maybe I will tie one on, buy one or the other and then shrug it off the next morning.

  7. I’m waiting for a PC release too, unless 360’s and PS3’s start hitting the refurb market really cheap. Basically my price line is that a console shouldn’t cost me anymore than I usually spend when upgrading my graphics card for something.

  8. That is the truth. I was actually contemplating a refurb Xbox. They run about 250 with the HD. But again, the whole red ring of death has me dropping a deuce in my pants when it comes to that kind of money.

    I just cannot trust buying one from Ebay or that sort of market. You are just asking for trouble. They have released all of the GTA games for the PC so far so I will just assume they will continue that trend.

  9. People really worry waay to much about the red ring.

    I got my red ring only 4 days into playing my system. Called MS, they sent me a box, I sent them my 360, and less than 2 weeks later I had my fixed 360 back. No charge, no shipping costs.

    It’s a one time thing, the problem has to do with soldering expanding under heat and then contracting once it’s cooled and breaking the connection. Once it’s fixed it’s fixed for good. And correct me if I’m wrong but if any of you are buying a *new* 360 I believe they no longer have that problem.

    So yes, it’s a pain in the ass to have to send it in but it still has the best games, the best online functionality and a whole other range of features. The only thing you gain on a PS3 is a Blu-Ray drive (don’t get me wrong that’s awesome and I wish I had one) but the 360 is still a better buy (in my opinion).

  10. Seph, I personally know two people who have had to send their Xbox 360s back in at least three times due to the RRoD. One of them had the RRoD pop up not 20 minutes after getting it back from being repaired. Newer models are better, but not immune from the failure it seems. Of course I also know a couple of people who have never had a failure on their Xbox 360s.

    I think you gain more than just a Blu-ray drive with the PS3. There are still some exclusive titles for the machine that are worth getting. Again as long as I have a souped up gaming PC I just can’t bring myself to buy an Xbox.

  11. I’m not the type of guy who takes sides in these crazy console arguments because like you I’m a lifelong PC gamer. My 360 was actually given to me as a bonus when I finished an internship so really I had my choice made for me. But I honestly wanted to know what exclusive PS3 titles were worth getting.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_PlayStation_3_games

    Sort by the exclusive column, and scroll down paying attention to the far right column which denotes NA release date. Out of the currently released PS3 exclusive games I only managed to find a single game worth buying and that’s Ratchet and Clank.

    There are also a few unreleased titles that claim to be PS3 exclusive worth buying: Final Fantasy XIII, Little Big World, God of War 3, L.A. Noire, Metal Gear Solid 4. But as we know exclusive titles don’t always stay that way.

  12. Hell, if someone gave me an Xbox 360 then I wouldn’t complain much either. grin

    And those exclusive games you listed that are due this year are all the reasons I bought a PS3. I’m a big MGS, God of War, and Final Fantasy fan and I’m really looking forward to LittleBigPlanet.

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