Review by Dogg

"I try to leave, but they pull me back in-Godfather 3, 1991"

Welcome to my world, if you don’t like it I’ll shove a gun up your ass
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Intro
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And so is the beginning of DMA (Don’t Mean Anything) Designs game Grand Theft Auto. Grand Theft Auto was a game released in 1997-1998 and got much fan appreciation due to its adult content. Here is a game that allows you to boost a car, then run over past 20 people, then have the cops all over you. This small gimmick turned out successfully.

The main reason you can give a game like Grand Theft Auto much attention is the fact that it goes where no other games have gone. It reaches a new point in gaming in which you are the criminal, in which you are the bad guy of your very own world.

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Gameplay
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You are the Wheelman!

In Grand Theft Auto you live your life as a criminal willing to try new things. There are also many criminals who want you to try new things. Grand Theft Auto allows you to pick a criminal, one who looks different and has a different personality, and with this criminal you must get jobs and missions and you must complete them. Missions include picking up people’s cousins, picking up parked cars, and just destroying some cars. When you finish the given mission you will get some points, then will be given another mission. As you progress and do all of the missions you will get to new levels.

Many of the missions are as I said pretty straightforward. But as you progress through the game missions tend to just get harder and harder. Some missions will give you opportunities to keep on trying and finding the given thing, while other missions will play differently and will need lots of strategic and specific thinking. Some missions will even time you, making the game get harder and harder.

Grand Theft Auto is played out on a top-view perspective. This makes some of the environments look more realistic, while still bending at the fact that it shows you who’s after you and who’s not. Captain, are you there it’s me Johnny?

Of course you don’t always have to do the missions. Who cares? Right. Grand Theft Auto allows you to do much more things other than doing missions. The best thing to do while waiting for your task will be to jack a car. With this car you will be able to maneuver around the city much easier, while also the car will make you Public Enemy #1.

GTA sports many different types of cars. It features 4 X 4’s, station wagons, pick-ups, limousines, fire trucks, squad cars, ambulance trucks, school buses, sports cars, stallions, humvees, jeeps, taxis, and motorcycles. Many trucks move and balance differently. The school buses and limousines are good cars, but they are to slow and will keep you from turning a lot, but some other cars like the Squad car and the motorcycles allow you to go fast, but will still give you problems. The motorcycle in fact, moves fast, but when it’s moving too fast it will hit a car and you will automatically fall of the motorcycle. These are some pretty good driving physics.

Anyways back to the whole-jacking-a car thing. Once you steal a car you will use it to different things. As mentioned you can use it to make some missions a bit easier, but cars can also be used for something else and that is for killing. Many pedestrians lurk in the streets and thanks to their awkward AI they can all be easily run over. Once they get runned over they will scream and will eventually fall to the floor and shed their own blood.

Blood is always thicker than water. And that shows. If you run over too many people you will get a cop signal. A cop signal appears on the top-center of the screen. Kill over 3-7 people and you will get one cop signal. Now cops will want you for what you did. Kill over 6-12 people and chances will be that you will get 2 cop signals. Once you get 2 more squad cars come to take you out of the car and put you to justice. However, kill more people and you will then have 3 signals. Here cops will block the streets while you still are chased by many squad cars. But if you keep on killing, then the more you are willing to be killed. Once you get 4 signals cops surround the streets and keep on calling for back up. Now Squad Cars also contain 2 cops in them, plus cops now block even more streets making maneuvering really hard to do.

As you kill people, jack cars, and complete missions you will get points. The more points you get, the more time you got left to leave that part of the city. The first level requires you to collect 1,000,000 points. As you progress you will need a lot more points. This can surely destroy the experience of Grand Theft Auto by making the experience to boring or to hard to come by. Also you can’t save in a level making getting those points a task easier said then done. However, saving does come into place. You can save your records and you can save the game to the new level in which you are in.

Grand Theft Auto features 3 different cities: Liberty City, San Andreas, and Vice City. Each city offers something different and each city gives you 2 new coordinates to complete. You start the game in Liberty City. Liberty City is a place overrun with traffic, good business, and lots of pedestrians. Liberty City should be your practice center for learning the basic rules of playing this game. Your second city is Vice City. In Vice City you get harder missions and such for completing the game. Your last city is San Andreas.

Once the police have busted you, you will be sent to their police station or you will be dropped off in the middle of the city. But even when you are busted you still will be a normal person living his criminal life. But other than getting caught, you will still have to worry about some of the other hazards. Some hazards are like getting shot, car gets blown up, getting burned, or you or the car and “you” fall in the water and die.

Grand Theft Auto features a nice selection of cars, but a weak selection of weapons. In the game you only got 4 weapons. They are a flamethrower, a rocket launcher, pistol, and a machine gun. Out of the 4 he best one is definitely the machine gun because it provides lots of ammo, quick shooting, and better game-weapon physics. The pistol shoots to slow and is way to weak. Also shooting people with the pistol is close to useless because the game provides awkward aiming. The rocket launcher is the strongest of the weapons, but it still has its problems. It can destroy houses by putting them on fire, it can kill people automatically, but most importantly it can destroy cars in one shot. The problem comes that if you are to close to the explosion, then you automatically die. This can almost definitely make this weapon a bit useless. The flamethrower is perhaps the worst weapon of them all. The flamethrower is the only weapon in which you ask to yourself “did they really have to put this into the game?” When you press the button to use the flamethrower your weapon will release a small dose of fire. The damage done is pretty weak, especially once you use this on a car. If you hold down the button for the flamethrower you will then release a huge dose of fire from your weapon however, when the button is hold down too long the flames will reverse and will hurt you. And then you will be covered in flames and you will then automatically die.

The control in GTA is pretty straightforward. It shows an easy balance of moving your character in the city in which you are in. At times however, it can get pretty confusing and this can all lead to a bad and painful death. Now you don’t want that, now do you?

Other than weapons, GTA offers up some main equipment that can be really necessary to survival. The first is a police bribe. A police bribe takes 1 cop signal off your meter and makes cops in available for a short period of time. The next is a get-out-of-jail-free-key. This key allows you to keep all your weapons that you had at the time the cops busted you. The next is an armor piece. The armor piece gives you protection from bullets. A normal package of armor contains 3 rounds. However, the first 3 rounds are always useless because the cops always kill you in the first round. The last piece of equipment are the Kill Frenzy’s. In Kill Frenzy you are given a machine gun, rocket launcher, etc. and you’ve got unlimited ammo for 15 seconds. During these 15 seconds you must kill as many people as possible. If you’ve killed enough people you will get some points as well as a police bribe.

Gameplay- 7+- You got a whole world to use, now you must destroy that world in which you use
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Graphics
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Parents sue DMA Designs for game’s content, is DMA’s worst excuse

Grand Theft Auto features rushed and poorly designed graphics. Not only is the texturing bad, but everything from pedestrians to car visuals looks bad. However, the game does shed some light to its huge environments. Scaling the environments on a top down view was a hard task, but still the graphics should have backed up the game’s explicit content. Also many of the cars don’t look like real cars at all, they look more like an exact replica of a Hot-Wheels car gone wrong.

Graphics- 5- - What is this (*beep*)

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Sound
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OH!!! My Baby

Another one of the game’s strongest suits is in the sound department. The sound of a car crashing to another car or the sound of a car backing up to another car sound very realistic and help add to the game’s content. Also the sound of people screaming or cursing on you is worth it all.

The game’s music is also comprised of some small Rap and some Rock n’ Roll tunes. Nothing is heard though, it is just music, but hey it’s pretty darn good.

Sound- 8+ - Oh, now I know what this (*beep*) is

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Content
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Holy Shnikeys!

Grand Theft Auto follows a very strong and also a very explicit content. The whole point of stealing cars is already a big issue. Don’t forget the main reason for the uproar of this game was its content. This is because no one has ever seen a game in which you steal a car, run over people, and then by the end of the day you still will be a hard knocks life criminal again.

Language is also a big filter in this game. In fact when you start the game you are given a very short response “answer the phones at South Park and try to get some jobs. Remember if you **** up we’ll **** you up.” And in the game its not censored out.

The game also treats your character as a ghetto type of criminal whos only thirst is other people’s blood. The pedestrian’s in fact show just how far the content of this game goes. You can shoot them, annoy them, torment them, throw them in rivers, flame them, run them over. There are just so many ways to make the streets in which you walk on a bloody mess.

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Overall
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Wanna be in the mob, son. The worst thing that can happen to you is that you will be shot, berated, and tormented for the rest of your life. Now have we got a deal Mr. Loyalty

Grand Theft Auto accomplishes its job on being a pure “Mature” game. Grand Theft Auto also sets a standard to many games that will come in the future. With a few more tints on the gameplay the game would have been a fiery hit. Also the graphics could have been better and in my opinion they shouldn’t have to have been rushed or anything. With a few improvements Grand Theft Auto would have been a big hit right away.

You should also try these games-
Driver, Driver 2, Grand Theft Auto (Play Station), Grand Theft Auto 2 (PC), Grand Theft Auto 2 (Play Station), Grand Theft Auto 2 (Dream Cast), Grand Theft Auto: London 1969 (Play Station), Grand Theft Auto 3 (Play Station 2).

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See Ma, Crime Does Pay


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/04/02, Updated 09/03/02


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