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4.5 out of 5 stars249
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on 27 December 2005
Every once in a while a video game will come out and change the face of computer gaming. In 1996, the arrival of Super Mario 64 in glorious 3D became the benchmark for all consoles today. Several years later, Rockstar came back with a vengeance with Grand Theft Auto III. Not only did it transform the old Playstation game into 3D, but it gave a much bigger plot and provided a lot more variety. By the time the sequel 'Vice City' came out, everything about gameplay had changed forever.
Based around Miami Vice, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City has some of the most colourful scenary to date. It also introduced Ray Liotta (Goodfellas) to a younger generation as the voice for main character Tommy Vercetti. But the main thing it did was it took the original concept of GTAIII and expanded into a gigantic city complete with drug addicts, criminals, gang warfare and all other kinds of creeps.
Rather than the basic mission after mission like its predecessor, Vice City requires you to buy property in order to access later missions. Buying property means access to jobs like The Taxi Firm, The Ice Cream Factory or collecting specific motors for your garage. But for the very early stages, you do the basic 'hit and run' jobs for Vice City's big people.
Apart from the atmosphere and graphics being built up a notch, the music and sound was superbly chosen for the 80's theme of the game. With classic 80's stars like Human League, Bryan Adams and Blondie, it gave the game a whole new dimension. Also when Ray Liotta speaks, he does it with a masterstroke, and who better to play a wiseguy?
I have not mentioned the plot of the game since a lot of people may already know about it, but however the end of the game is well worth getting to. Never had a game been so gigantic in its exploration, so beautiful in its looks and the freedom to do whatever you wanted (to certain extent since the cops are still around) made this a game well worth buying.
When classic games are made, they're cemented in history, and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City broke the mould.
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on 13 November 2002
After the huge success of GTA III, you'd think there would be little else to follow up on.. well you'd be wrong. Vice City is gaming perfection in every sense, complete freedom, improved visuals, a kickass authentic 80'soundtrack and a huge number of tasks to complete.
The story line is also much more involving than that of its predecessor, with the central character, Tommy Vercetti actually speaking, and not only that, but he is voice by Ray Liotta (Goodfellas, Blow). There are a few other nice cameos in the game, such as porn actress Candy Suxxx being voiced by Jenna Jameson, and real estate tycoon Avery Carrington voiced by Burt Reynolds (Boogie Nights). A rather obsure cameo is that of the lead singer of the fictional rock group Love Fist, who is voiced by Kevin McKidd, who some may remember as Tommy in Trainspotting.
The influences from 80's films and other media are very strong indeed, one of the more memorable ones for me being Diaz's mansion looking like that of Tony Montana's in Scarface.. right down to his office.
This game has everything you'd expect from GTA and more, there's the usual killing, drug dealing and running errands for big players but also a lot more "obscure" missions, including the purchasing of property and setting up it's assets.
One of the best things about this game is the inclusion of motorbikes, planes and helicopters, all fully functional and loads of fun.
All in all, Rockstar have really pushed the boat out here, smashing all video game conceptions to create a game that places you in a real living, breathing city.. and unlike GTA III, you can enter many of it's buildings. If you loved GTA III or even if you've never played it, this is a must have for the PS2, a true classic.
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on 21 June 2006
I loved this game so much I have gone and got a second copy, mine has stopped working!

I love the feeling that an entire world lives within the game and you can always just steal a car and ride, listen to the radio and take in Vice City's many sites.

Tommy Vercetti - excellantly cast as Ray Liotta of Goodfellas fame gets out of the slammer and goes back to his turf. He gets sent to Vice City to get him out of the way because really, they don't want him around anymore and they certainly don't want to answer his questions about why he got jailed.

You can ride bikes, take cars, helicopter fly over the city, go through districts with different cultures and work for many gangs. Bikers, Columbians cops even, accompanied by a sound track that beats the heck out of any other game I've played. A radio with enough variation to keep everyone happy as they do their drive-bys and cruise looking at women.

And the talk shows! Classy touch.

The game play is smooth and with barely a bug to be seen flows from day to night and back again with the city in sync, Vice City at night is amazing, you also get weather variations and the impact of that, in the rain, bikes tend to skid more and you fall off.

It's that kind of attention to detail that means the game never grows tiresome. The hidden jumps to be done with all manner of vehicles and the taxi/paramedic, etc missions mean the game really is so open ended.

It's been three years and I'm still exploring Vice City.

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on 17 June 2007
I would like to point out that this is not me being biased towards this game and also that I have played most of the games that are similar including the other gta's in the series.

This game is without doubt the best game I have ever and I think will ever play in my life. Every fibre of its construction from the cars and bikes to the funky and brilliant weapons. This game is set in 80's America where you are Tommy vercetti seeking revenge in the big city (as well as little cash and destruction on the side!). This game has so many missions and sides that it is bound to keep you entertained. I found that this was the only game that I can still play over and ever. My bordem threshold for this game is extensive and I think that I will continue to play this game when I am in my ageing years! Please don't think that you might as well buy San Andreas rather than this because you will be missing out on playing this truly magnificent game. The reason I think that separates this game fro its contenders is its fantastic radio stations that have so much to offer in terms of comedy and great 80's music. This game was a landmark for the ps2 and it will remain to be so. I could not recommend this game enough to anyone who feels compelled to get in a car and have the police in hot pursuit or simply walk around the city with a minigun and cause havoc. There is no other game that I have played that has ever reached this standard in terms of game play and pure ongoing enjoyment.
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on 12 January 2003
such a suberb game. if you own the first it's well worth buying even though its pretty much the same model. as 80's culture is making the predictable turn around and is becoming popular its was the best era to choose and it works so well to bring out the sleaze and atmosphere there would have been (fashion, music, language etc..).
graphics are brilliant because they arn't quite cartoons but dont try to be ultra realistic like the getaway but still look fantastic.
sound effects have to be heard through a good system especially some of the beefier cars and motorbikes with a sub woofer. and the music is just brilliant, i was blown away to find some of my favorite tracks on the huge 80+ list of songs from the original synth pop, eletro, emerging hip-hop styles and good ol' 80's rock.
the one massive advantage this game has is playability. i still havnt completed it simply beacuse i spend so much time either on my own or with friends just messing about in the game world as there are so many things to do for fun!
if it had a proper multiplayer addition this would be the greatest game ever.
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VINE VOICEon 4 January 2004
Once it was installed, which took minimal time, it was straight into the game. The tutorial you get at the begining helps to get you used to it, and then it is on with the game.
The missions are always different and it's great to here your character finally speak.
The graphics are improved, as is the loading time between islands, which could be annoying before. If you liked Grand Theft Auto 3 you will love this.
There is a greater range of cars and loads of special guest stars to breathe life into the game. Just what you would expect from a top production company.
While you may get bored of the games missions you can then just drive around and get used to the layout of the map and area. When you have finished this you want to have another go at a mission that you couldnt do before.
A brilliant game that all GTA fans will be longing for, well worth the money, even if you have GTA3 already. I myself own all GTA games and have still play them as well.
In conclusion, get it!
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on 6 December 2002
I don't suppose its worth writing yet another review for this, as everyone else has praised it so much. But simply to say if you have a PS2 and STILL haven't bought this game, you are MAD.
This has to be the greatest game ever to have been created, the attention to detail, the scope that it covers, the wit, the cast, the radio, the designs of the missions, and the shear size of the thing is amazing.
I have been playing this for hours and I've still not scratched the surface. There is just so much to do, its so easy to get side tracked and go off doing your own thing, exploring, causing mayhem, playing the mini games. I'm still finding new stuff, try keeping the beach ball off the ground - you get points for it!! (and I spent a good deal of time on a scrambler bike riding up and down the beach listening to Megadeth).
Rock* should be knighted for this product, it oozes class and professionalism. Buy now and forget about the real world for a very, very long time.
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on 26 June 2004
Hawaiian shirts, fast cars, electro pop. All our dreams come true.
Kiss goodbye to your weekend and your job. You aren't going to need them anymore, because GTA is back, and it's bigger and better than ever. New this time is lead character Tommy Verciti; he's in trouble after a drug deal went sour, and stars in a rich and varied '80s gangster plot, played out between cinematic cut scenes and an all star voice cast.
You can tear around vice city to your hearts content, but the first missions form a training area for the uninitiated, or a refresher for grizzled GTA veterans. Once fully unlocked, there are a huge variety of districts to check out, including an airport, docklands, downtown, a beach and an army barracks. The increased use of boats, helicopters and planes offer refreshingly different game play.
Naturally, there are loads of guns and weapons for you to kick arse with, including [take a deep breath] brass knuckles, screwdrivers, hammers, truncheons, golf clubs, baseball bats, meat cleavers, katana swords, knifes, machetes, chainsaws, grenades, detonator bombs, C4, Molotov cocktails, teargas, colt 45's, colt python's, stubby shotguns, chrome shotguns, spaz12 shotguns, Tec 9's, 9mm Uzi's, Ingram Mac 10's, MP5's, Rugers, colt M4's, Rocket Launchers, M60's, Flamethrowers, Gattling guns, Sniper Rifles and PSG-1's. The cars are cool, corvettes, porches, mini vans, trucks, but it's the introduction of motorcycles that makes a difference. On dirt bikes, Harley Davidson's, pizza bikes, and PCJ 600's, you can pop wheelies, but warning; the handling is tight. Combined with the all-new cinematic "chase" cameras, makes for a top game in itself. Plot missions are varied, and include threatening shop owners, guarding over a mob deal, demolition, rescuing a friend, or just plain assassination. The variety of options means that it's truly difficult to get tired or frustrated. Using Action replay can bugger up your game, so be warned. The scope of the game is immense. GTA Vice City doesn't just blur the boundaries between videogames and popular culture, it decimates them.
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on 5 February 2004
I recently read in a PS2 magazine, that 'Grand Theft Auto: Vice City' was voted the best game on PS2 so far, and now having played on the game for myself, i have to say that i agree with them completly. It has everything that a great game should have; supurb graphics, loads of missions, a huge array of guns and other bloodthirsty weopons, fast-paced police chases, and of course hundreds of cool cars zoom about Vice City in.
The object of the game is suprisingly simple, to buy everything in Vice City. You play as tough street-wise Tommy Vercetti, who is asked by some of the 'money belts' in town to do missions for. Once you have completed these missions you are generously rewarded; at first, with small amounts of maybe a few hundred dollars, and then gradually building up to tens of thousands of dollars. With this money you must then buy businesses such as The Malibu Club or the taxi cab firm. You gradually go round Vice City buying it up, and then once you rule Vice City, you have completed the game.
However, it's not quite as simple as that. The missions are not things like take the dog for a walk or water the garden. They involve killing, assassination, stealing, and blowing up stuff. There are also a few things to help you on your way. For a start there is the huge list of firearms, from pistols to machine guns which you can either buy from one of the many gun shops in Vice City or as you are on your travels, you may find one lurking down an alley. Then there is the big assortment of bloodthirsty hand weopons such as baseball bats, meat clevers, machettes, brass knuckles, and even a chainsaw, to name but a few. However, until you find or buy all these things, you will have to rely on your street fighting skills, and beat the baddies up with your bare hands.
All these forms of assalt and violence are ok, but you must remember that there are swarms of policeman roaming the streets, just waiting for you to commit a crime, like vanderlising a car, or mugging a perdestrian. If they see you then they will be on to you like a shot and there is virtually no escape, especially if you have more than one felony star. The felony stars are in the top right hand corner of the screen, and each tme the police catch you doing somthing wrong, you will gain a star. As you get more and more stars, they will start to bring in much more heavy artilary including choppers and even tanks! When you are eventually caught by the cops, you will appear back at the police station and not only will all your collection of weopons have been taken from you, but also a small amount of money will also have been taken as a bribe.
And just in case you were wondering, no you don't have to wander round Vice City on foot, transportation is provided in the form of nearly one hundred different cars, from vans to motorbikes which you will usually have to hijack from innocent pedestrians.
I absolutely have to say somthing about the supurb graphics which give the game it's realism. To be honest there are only a few other games which have this type of amazing detail and it just makes playing the game so much more enjoyable.
'GTA: Vice City' beats GTA 3 in all areas, including the missions. In this game there are nearly double the amount of missions there were in GTA 3 and in my opinion they are quite a bit more fun to complete.
Well what more can i say? This is just such an amazing game in absolutely every way and i don't think we'll see anything quite like this for a while. The makers will really have to pull somthing special out the bag for the next installment. Buy this game, and i promise you it will becoe a valuable edition to your PS2 collection!
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VINE VOICEon 16 January 2003
This game has all the hallmarks of the GTA series... violence, violence, and more gratuitous violence! The game play resembles that of the old 'Driver' series more than the original GTA, but the graphics are now much better, and the game play is as smooth as the criminals on the street corners. The most important element from the original game that has been preserved here is the sense of humour that pervades the whole thing... reminding those fuddy-duddy critics that, yes, it's only a game, and that it will not breed a whole new race of young carjacking hooligans. I loved the original, but to this day, I have never run over any Hare Krishnas or fired a guided missile at a police car yet....
Everything about this game is excessive/over the top, from the multitude of 80s themed music to the Lambos and Testarossas being driven around the streets. Even the police have some pretty tasty new methods to try and stop you as you become more of a menace to society... unmarked Testarossas (Miami Vice anyone?), SWAT teams, helicopters, stingers... and that is only the half of it.
This game does not encourage one to go out into the streets with a feeling of invunerability as sooner or later you will most likely be caught or killed, so that argument doesn't hold much water if you ask me. Actually, you play the part of a crook in a city full of lowlife scum. Indeed, the citizens of this town are all so nasty that you can even get a cash bonus for beating up drunks, prostitutes or pimps! Infact, it seems that beating people up is always a good idea... beat up a copper, you get his weapons; beat up a drunk, get a good citizen bonus; beat up a random punter, get his money and some punching practice.. (I told you you're mother wouldn't like it!)
The objectives are pretty straight-forward, but there are many hours of fun to be had just mucking around, so if you are good at this type of game and feel that you might not get your money's worth, I would still recommend it as a valuable addition to any self-respecting collection.
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