Review by dizzyjay2

Reviewed: 01/05/07

Grand Theft Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto= Stealing a car
Grand Theft Grand Theft Auto= Stealing from two of the most successful games made in the the 2000s.

Welcome to Stillwater, somewhere between San Andreas and Vice City, and just south of Liberty City. This game is such a copy of the GTA series, everyone at Volition should send Rockstar a thank you letter. But at the same time, this is the best game I have played on the X-Box 360, and it has a few differences from GTA that sets it apart.

Game play: 9/10- The game play is fun, but GTA has already beaten this style into the ground. It is an open city, and you pretty much free to go where you want. The controls feel natural as far as games go, and aiming and switching weapons is fast and easy. You will master the controls within a half hour of game play, maximum.

When the game begins, you are nothing but a baby gangster, caught in a bad fight between rival gangs, and these two men find you seconds away from death. Your job is to help the 4th place gang in the city become the number one gang.

At the start things are way to big and confusing, but you eventually get used to it. Even so it takes forever to get across the bridges and across the city. I would say it takes about 4 minutes of real time to go from one end of the city to another, the place is huge.

There are many different kinds of stores (clothing, jewelry, liquor and drug store, tattoo, car dealerships and more) These places can mostly be robbed for extra night time fun, and they have hilarious names which is cool. You can also visit the movie theater, and watch old cut scenes from the game, cool idea but it would be nice to add other fake movies or something ,even like 1 minute action films that are silly would be awesome.

Money is money, but really the only currency you need to worry about is respect. This is obtained by doing side missions called activities. These vary greatly in their difference. Some of them get really hard and rather annoying, but there are plenty of rather fun ones to deal with also. Also, any time you steal someones car and they have more than one other person in the car, you keep the option to hijack them and get money and respect that way. Some people seem to love these activities but I find them rather annoying sometimes.

Pretty much the more purple you wear, the higher you respect will be, because that is your gang color. I do not like this, because if you want the most respect you have to wear a stupid looking outfit that costs a lot, instead of maybe what you want to wear, something casual or sporty.

There is 75 tags to tag over and 60 CDs to collect . Derived from hidden packages and such from the GTA series, im sure of it. But either way I love these things, and finding them when you least expect it, its nice.

Story: 10/10- This game has a really good MAIN plot. The activities have one small blerb about something, but once you start there is zero follow up to the story so its kind of, meh. Anyway, there are 3 different main sub-plots, and another small one at the end. All of them start off pretty generic, but end up to be surprising with the level of effort put into creating a multi-layered plot. A terrific job is done of cutting each scene to make the situation as tense as possible, and the voice acting is solid. Most of voiced by celebrities, and they come through. There is a lot of cursing (probably too much) and adult themes (a lot of sexual content). This is not the game you want to be caught playing when Grandma comes over.

The characters show a wide range of emotions, and you really feel like you get to know them. Its great because you can even sort of predict there actions just by knowing them. The end is rather though provoking as far as video games go also. They do a great job of making Stillwater a real place.

Sounds/Music: 9/10- As I already stated, the voice overs are all really well done. There is a crap load of music also, but unlike GTA, almost none of it is recognizable, only about 2 songs had I actually heard before. You have the option of making your own custom sound track, and playing it while you play the game. This is great because the music will pause for a cut scene by itself, so you can listen to your own music. The talk radio channel is hardly funny, and it is supposed to be. It tries to poke fun at the stereotypes people have against immigrants, and just comes off as very rude and ignorant.

Graphics: 9/10- The cut scenes look great, I mean next generation defined. The game in running time does not look as good, but it is still very good graphically speaking. I have ran into a few graphical glitches where the road and car will disappear, and there will be nothing but your characters sitting on air for 5 seconds, while the rest of the game still moves (this is especially annoying when you are being timed) but this has happened to me about 6 or 7 times in 50 hours of game play, so it is not that frequent.

Online: 7/10- Does not do a great job of explaining how each game works, and they are kind of dull. Sometimes you do not even realize you are being shot at. The only reason I would even think of playing online is for achievements, because 5 or 6 achievements deal with online play.

Replay Value: 8/10- I would say for the average player, a one time go around is sufficient because it will take over 70 overs to beat the game and get the extra stuff you need to get. At the end of that, you are probably going to be really well satiated But this is certainly a game you may pick up in a year if you are bored and just go wild with it.

Overall: 9/10 Funny ads, hidden graffiti tag locations, a plot dealing heavily with gangsters with ruthless unapologetic murder, loads of guns, stealing anyones car you want... all things borrowed from its big brother. I guess the point is, the formula works and it makes for a great and exciting game. I would buy it if I were you, it is well worth your money and you will not get to the real good stuff if you just rent it.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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