Review by GTAGanxtaize

"2 steps back from SA, but 1 giant leap forward."

This is my second review on GameFAQs. It's obviously about Grand Theft Auto IV. Like other reviewers, I am breaking this review into sections.

Grand Theft Auto IV has an extremely engaging story. Instead of creating your own character like San Andreas loosely did, you now follow in the shoes of Niko Bellic. You don't choose your character's destiny, you simply control his actions. There are multiple missions in which you get to decide what Niko does, however. In one mission you can either kill a pimp who rose to the top and get his cool house, or kill a gangster who reminds Niko of himself and get a large sum of money. The story also intertwines with friends Niko makes during the story.

GTA IV has taken a step back from San Andreas, apart from mini-games. Niko now has a cell phone which he can use to call other people or arrange dates with girlfriends. Rockstar has taken out the whole player improvement feature with stats. While, like with GTA 3, running will increase your character's stamina, it isn't necessarily recorded in a menu or anything like that. Eating is still there, but like in Vice City, it only increases health. It doesn't make Niko fat, and eating almost 10 meals in an hour thankfully doesn't make him throw up. Features would be 8/10 except when you kill your girlfriend it doesn't stop you from getting 100% like in San Andreas (thank you Rockstar) so I'm giving it a 9/10.

The graphics in this game are simply amazing. The only downside is the trees and bushes. The pixels are so big. When you run a car into the wall, the damage physics and graphics are amazing. The whole front end of the car will be smashed and it looks so real.

I was not impressed with the soundtrack of the game at all. While there are some good songs (Rocky Mountain Way, etc.), I had trouble finding songs I really knew. There are a lot more radio stations than San Andreas, but a bunch of them are in Russian or Spanish. The talk stations aren't as funny as VCPR from Vice City, and they haven't been as funny since. Maybe Rockstar is losing their imagination.

Overall, I give the game a 9/10. It was a little over hyped but is still worth every penny. It will be one of the greatest games ever. While it is 2 steps back from San Andreas with freedom, it takes a giant leap forward like GTA 3 did back in 2001.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 06/09/08

Game Release: Grand Theft Auto IV (US, 04/29/08)

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