Review by swazonek

Reviewed: 11/01/05

GTA On The Go, What's not to like!?

Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories for the psp is gta on the go, plain and simple. What's not to like?
Combining the best elements of GTA 3 and Vice City, this game is simply amazing for a portable experience and is my favourite handheld game.

STORY: The story revolves around a man named Toni Ciprianni who is a part of the Leone crime family. He meets many interesting characters throughout Liberty City and his main objective is just accomplishing objectives to bring the city to peace. There is not much of a story compared to every other GTA game but it does well.

GRAPHICS: LCS has very good visuals but there is some flaws. First off, it is truly amazing how the psp can fully display a rich, involving city as big as Liberty City. The enviroments spanned across 3 seperate islands are great looking with plenty of detail and effects. The characters are nice as are the vehicles. LCS's visuals are just a bit worse than GTA 3 so dont expect to see GTA:SA graphic like quality anywhere. The main flaw with LCS's graphics is the framerate. The framerate is never smooth as you want it to be and it can be very sluggish and slow at times. The framerate also causes lots of bugs and glitches within the game.

AUDIO: Grand Theft Auto games have always had great audio with fun soundtracks and perfect voice acting. LCS does not disappoint in this category. The sound effects are good and realistic with lots of variety even though the weapon sound effects could have been better. The voice acting is wonderful even without hollywood voice talent which would have been even better. As for the music, it is pretty much rap which I dont like but it fits the mood of the game perfectly. The radio in LCS is still funny but lacks the variety of the console GTA games.

CONTROLS: GTA works greatly on the psp. The controls are one thing that Rockstar could have messed up with but didn't. The controls are precise and responsive. The only thing bad is with the movement comtrols as the D-pad is great for driving while the analog nub is great for on-foot stuff. You of course can only have one movement button for both. The camera can be a bit jumpy at times but is not a problem and the targeting system is above average.

GAMEPLAY: LCS does not change the gameplay from the console versions. You can do all the stuff your used to like driving, shooting, walking, collecting, and doing missions. Things that are kept from GTA 3 that I wish were not kept are the water-death problems, the progression of the game, the areas, and the style. This game just feels like GTA 3 a lot. Fear not though, there is new ideas to behold. First off is the ability to drive bikes which is a very nice addition. Second, you can get weapons like chainsaws and butcher knifes. Third, there are a ton of new side-missions like being a car salesman. Lastly, there is multiplayer. Yes, you heard me, Multiplayer. There are many different modes like deathmatch and vehicle racing. Too bad there is no online play but the multiplayer is still a very touch.

GTA:LCS is the best psp game to date and even though it is not an entirely new experience with flaws, it is well worth the money. Good job Rockstar!


Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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