10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Anarchic, Violent, Amoral and Absolutely Great Fun!,
This review is from: Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (PC) (Video Game)
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is a brilliant follow up to the legendary Grand Theft Auto 3, which stole several weeks of my life when it was released.
Vice City is fundamentally very similar to GTA3, and certainly all the best elements remain. For a start, you are as free to roam as ever - simply carjack a nice ride, find a gun, and go on a rampage. Or have a drive around the city, and see some of the sights, visit a strip club, jump in a boat, helicopter or motorcycle and just look for all the opportunities for bad behaviour that the game has to offer. The graphics are similar if somewhat refined, and the game has the same look as GTA3, although there is more variety and detail in the buildings, vehicles and scenery. As before, the city is full of vunerable pedestrians, simply crying out to be robbed or run over, and they come in a greater number of shapes, sizes, and dress than ever before, and have more to say for themselves.
As far as missions go, Vice City boasts a far greater number of them, and they take in a great variety of locations, use a large number of the approximately 100 vehicles in the game, and are at times much more involved than in GTA3. There are many more people to work for, too, although the basic progression through the game remains, with areas of the map, and new employers becoming available as you make a name for yourself and complete certain missions. Overall, there are just more things to discover in Vice City, and this is where it really wins out over it's predecessor - there are more weapons, vehicles, buildings to explore, interesting characters, story missions, side missions, and things to do between missions, and they are all spread over a larger and more varied city. The most effective new feature of the game is the property aspect - there are now about 15 properties to buy around the city - some act as safehouses or places to store vehicles, and some are businesses that will generate regular income after you have completed key missions. They add to the sense that you are coming up in the world as the game unfolds.
The atmosphere of the game is better too - the soundtrack is superb, featuring many of the biggest hits of the eighties, and loads of other classics, played on 10 radio stations that can be listened to in almost every vehicle. The dialogue is much more varied, and better voiced, and the sound effects are convincing, with gunfire and collisions improved from GTA3. Different areas of Vice City have much more distinct character, and this creates the impression of a real bustling city. It is possible to become immersed in the game world much more easily than in GTA3.
In terms of innovation, Vice City has little to offer over Grand Theft Auto 3, but somehow it manages to create a more convincing experience - more to do, more to see, and crucially more fun than ever. For fans of the GTA series, prepare for the best yet. For those new to these classic games, this is a perfect place to start.