GTA IV: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

Editorial, Gaming

The Bad…

While there is plenty of good things about GTA, unfortunately, there are several bad aspects too.

“Realistic” car handling

Some have hailed this as simply GTA branching into a new direction of realism, which I admit, wouldn’t be a bad thing if GTA were a life sim. However, GTA has always been about its Hollywood-esque gameplay. One man against an entire police force Helicopters SWAT teams the Armed Forces, and while you would almost always die, you could quite easily hold your own on foot from a good defensive position, or have an epic car chase across the map using multiple vehicles; in GTA IV, forget it. While you can take corners at “reasonable” speed with a hell of a lot of practice, gone are the extreme handbrake turns at near top speed, gone are the gentle turns at high speed, in fact, gone is any turning at anything above “reasonable” speed, and you have to brake, a lot. While this is more realistic, it is nowhere near as fun. Also, I sort of understand the reasoning behind Nico flying through his windscreen when you have a big head on crash – even though it’s tedious to get back in the car, but couldn’t he just put his seat belt on? Surely a bit of compromise would be the airbag inflating, and Nico having to spend a couple of seconds to burst it?

Rockstar can play the realism angle all they like, but I find it hard to understand the need for “realistic” driving, when they en corporate a cinematic camera angle at the touch of a button.

Nothing to buy

One of Nico’s most common phrases in the game is in response to someone asking him why he’s in the line of work he’s in, “I need the money”. If Nico gave me that answer, my follow up question would have been, “For what, exactly?”. As of now, I’ve bought myself a few suits, a whole host of weapons – mainly using Lil’ Jacob’s cheaper offerings – and erm… that’s it. I’m sure there are those who have more than me by now, but at one point I had $70,000 with nothing to buy and Nico was still spouting the “I need the money.” Jesus, Nico, you just earnt that in a few days, it takes some people a year or more to make that much.

There was plenty to buy in San Andreas: the obvious guns and clothes, vehicles, car depots, garages, safe houses, cars, car mods and more. Even way back with Vice City you could buy businesses and safe houses. What happened Rockstar?

GTA IV
Car modding in San Andreas

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Last modified: February 23, 2011

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