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on 2 January 2004
This re-release of the two most recent GTA games is an absolutely essential purchase for any fan of the games. The reason? The XBox versions are far, far superior to the PS2 versions which preceeded them.
The L and R triggers used to control cars affords you a FAR greater level of control, and the custom soundtrack option, which manifests itself in a CD player in GTAIII and a tape deck in GTA:VC, adds to the game even more.
After a reasonably lengthy and difficult getaway from the police, i completed a jump over a river to safety... just as 'Mr E's Beautiful Blues', one of my favourite songs, kicked in on the car radio, as a custom track. It doesn't get much better than that!
Grand Theft Auto III shines, literally. The character models have had a hefty re-think, and everything is much more defined. The cars are shiny to an extreme, and reflect the city and the light beautifully. The draw distance is also much better than the PS2 version, and there are no points where you see a blue square on the road where the PS2 would be struggling to load the graphics.
When you save the game, it is almost instant. Not as instant as it is on Halo, but FAR faster than the PS2 versions.
What this all adds up to is the tweaking to perfection of a brilliant game. The XBox is the ultimate console for this game, and although Rockstar are tied to the PS2 for the foreseeable future, they could seriously consider XBox versions, as the console offers far more for this genre.
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on 30 December 2003
Now, Where to begin...Hmm I guess I should start with the
gameplay, since the graphics of all new titles get all better
and better, we should step aside of all that and focus a bit
on other aspects of today's games such as Gameplay and endurance in time.
Well Vice city is a very original game in terms of scenario and
it's implementation. There are not many games that give you the
freedom to be on the wrong side of the law and have a complete
freedom over a virtual town where you can kill or beat to death innocent people, steal markets, hijack cars, take on missions
about extortions, assasinations and anything else you could ever imagine. If you want you can make your living as a model citizen by driving a taxi or an ambulance or even work for the police, but all those are just minor sub-missions, a fine addition to the main missions but they wont take you far.
The real green is on the main missions and buying profitable
properties such as night clubs e.t.c.
The graphics of the game are excellent without loading delays e.t.c. The strong point of the game is the astonishing lightining effects. Hell, the game even incoporates realistic weather effects !!
The sound is even better. Realistic sound effects and great music in the form of radio music stations when you are in a car.
I Recommend this game to everyone that is fed up with the same ordinary fixed game types and looks for some originality.
I am very nitpicking when it comes to games and I am very difficult person to be satisfied and yet I highly recommend
this game without any hesitation.
If you have both consoles (PS2 / XBOX). Get it on XBOX. The load times are a lot faster, it gives you the freedom of custom soundtracks and also looks smooth and better.
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on 27 February 2004
I have just completed vice city and I ended up doing the final mission 3 times over because I could not accept that it was over. There is such immense pleasure to be had with this game, it is brilliant in its video scenes, its story line, its characterisation, its humour, it soundtrack, its atmosphere and its diverse range of missions.
I have had this double pack a month and a half now. That's not to say that I have completed it quickly or that its easy, its not because in terms of hours I have spent, there have been loads. I have barely touched GTA 3 because I have been so ensconced with Vice City and now I have completed it I look forward to starting GTA 3.
Just Vice City alone is worth double the money it will cost you to buy this double pack. My advice to anyone who has just started or is about to start Vice City is don't rush from mission to mission, take your time, make the experience last and do the various sub missions. It will help your tactical sense and your geographical knowledge of the city thus making the missions more doable.
Jump up and down, scream and kick, do anything to obtain this game.
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on 4 March 2004
The much acclaimed ps2 versions of these games have now become available on the x box. The games are fast highly addictive and have great playability. Vice city adds a new twist to the GTA scene, 8o's beach life bikinis guns and cash. Whether you want to play for 5 minutes or 5 hours, do missions or mess about, GTA's lifespan seems endless. great games with a new flavour added...
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on 12 January 2004
I'm about 3/4's through gta3 on the xbox
It's absolutely awesome. feels like a tiny step backward from true crime in some gameplay respects, but that's quickly forgotten. I ripped the GTA 1 score to my xbox to drive around to. top laughs! The graphics are a vast improvement over the PS2 as long as you turn "trails" off in the setup menu. not sure why that feature exists as it downgrades the graphics to PS2 standard! It's automatically set to "trails on" so be sure to turn it off!
The graphics clean up is quite startling playing with an RGB cable. All the road signs, shop windows, posters etc.are now readable, all characters have lip synched (to a point) moving mouths, they have moving fingers! This is how it should have looked on the PS2 I guess. Whether it's the extra coding time Rockstar have had or the graphic grunt of the Xbox or both..GTA has never looked better.
Sound also sounds good, with Dolby Digital 5.1 used to max effect. Police cars swerving around your head and cars exploding behind you as you run away.... to graze the surface of the surround experience! Lovely.
On options, pump the music volume up to max and the sound effects down a couple of notches for the best setting.
The control system is great and does play really well.
also of note...there is no "on screen" map on GTA3. It's there on Vice City but not on GTA3. It did , however exist on the PS2 .. but don't quote me.
The big bonus of this version over the PS2 is the custom soundtracks. Implemented much better than "true crime streets of l.a", the track remains where you left it when you get out of the car, or get in a new one. Also, it will play everything on your Hard drive and you can skip through the "cds" and tracks. Magic.
Vice city I have yet to sample in depth, but all the points I have mentioned here carry over to vice city too. Including the Map..It's there!
all in all, the 2nd and 3rd "killer apps" now an xbox. up there wth Halo!
for the price of one game..?... I'm looking for the catch.....
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The Grand Theft Auto series seems to be something everyones played. And it would seem now that many gamers are still playing this classics, that have 'thankfully' been brought over to the xbox. Apart some smoother graphics, and quicker load times, the game keeps what made it so special - a whole world for you to explore. And its yours!

Yep, you don't even have to do the missions to enjoy GTA. Afterall, how many gamers can say they've never been with mates, and made up their own challenges? Whether it be.. "Who can make it across 'that' bridge on GTA 3" or "Who can shoot down the most police helicopters". The game just seems to go on, and you rarely get tired.

GTA III feels and looks alot more darker than Vice City, with it being set in present day, in the grim streets of Liberty City, where it rains, rains.. oh yeah, and the skies are grey! I think this adds to the atmosphere though. The controls are fairly simple, and missions are straight forward.

Vice City takes a different aproach at adding more story, and a whole new atmosphere, as the game takes place in a brihgt Miami Vice style island, where the sun always shines. In fairness, its a good change from GTA 3, and is good for the summer, whereas GTA3 has always been a winter game.

Both games have the same elements - weapons, cars of all types, crazy..crazy members of the public (even crazier on vice city!) and lots of what made it so popular - pure killing.

Got the baseball bat? You can just go and batter a shopper whos walking down the street. Or use a flame thrower to kill numbers of police officers in one go. Or get the shotgun to blow cars up with ease. Vice City improves on the weapons side with things like a Mini gun (its the opposite - a large gattling gun) or if your feeling even more rage, get yourself a machette, or a screwdriver. Or.. why not use the chainsaw, and watch the blood splatter on screen. Its pointless killing, yet incredibly fun - possibly because its so unreal.

The same goes with the AI - you look at the way people walk, and you just have to laugh. A fat guy will waddle slowly, yet if you shoot him, he'll run away as quick as lightening. Or shoot a sun bather on Vice City, and watch them flailing their arms about like kids. The speech is funny too, with some good quotes.

The transportation department is even better on Vice City too - with the help of bikes, mopeds, army tanks (available without the cheat at the army base) and of course my favourite.. the army helicopter! Its doesnt stop eitherm you can get ice cream vans, huge trucks, lorrys.. its endless, and so, so fun.

If their was ever a game you just to had to have on the PS2, it was GTA3. now, for a small price, you can get both games, with improvements, for the more powerful xbox. Ask yourself, is their any reason you shouldn't buy this?....
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on 29 January 2004
Well, looks like my PS2 has come to the end of its useful life with this GTA Double Pack for the Xbox.
Far superior graphics and infinitely shorter loading times between islands and starting the game up make these incarnations of GTA the best ever!!....
Having complete both these games on the PS2 i was a bit wary of purchasing them again for a different console, as the games take a lot of time and effort to work through and some of the missions are impossibly hard, but i was swayed by some of the reviews it was getting in the magazines so i bought it and i havent regretted it!!
The graphics are a lot crisper and cleaner, and the game feels a lot more solid with less glitches, also there is a load more detail than in the PS2 versions, such as; you can actually see the individual spokes on the wheels of the sports cars; when the bonnets come flying off the cars you can actually see and identify engine components, some of them even move!!
Another plus point is the loading times of the game, whereas the PS2 seemed to take decades to just start the game, these versions fly through the loading screens and your there and ready to play in no time! As for the loading of islands when you cross a bridge, you barely even notice the loading screen as its on for a matter of seconds, meaning you have more uninteruppted gaming!!
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on 22 May 2004
Impossible to express just how good this game is. It has restored my belief and interest in the world of consoles games. It has everything and more that you could want from a game. Most games leave me feeling that they could have been better, but I don't see how this game could have been improved upon. There is so much to do and see, apart from the main aspects of the game. Hours can be spent driving around admiring the scenery, performing stunts in the various vehicles, starting gunfights, snipeing people and causing mayhem and chaos. Best of all are the police and the frantic and often hilarious chases. Throughout the game new areas and touches of brilliance are found. The helicopter is great and can be used to fly from area to area over the massive city. I cannot recommend this game enough. Possible the best game ever made. Everyone should play this game and experience gaming perfection. This review is relevant for both of the games, with Vice City probably having the edge.
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on 17 February 2004
I have bought both these games twice now, what greater testament can be bestowed upon them, for they are two of the most sublimely diverse and rewarding games in history.
The medley of missions and side quests, as I like to call them, positively ooze with variety and are limited only by the imagination of the beholder, well almost.
These remarkable and prodigious masterpieces must really be seen to be appreciated. They are in essence life itself, only with more violence. A whole world to traverse with different experiences to be gained everytime.
Few other games can offer such rich entertainment and divergent forms of enjoyment in one package. I can only see these games being bested by rockstar itself. What other developer can tackle the earnest issue of violence and crime in such a gratifying and ultimately jocular manner. Marvellous.
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on 11 October 2003
Finally I can re-box my PS2 and sell it. These are two of the best games I have ever played and to have both together on my favourite format is brilliant. For those of you who are not familiar with these titles (where have you been?) you play a gangster called Tommy Vercetti. You start off as a low end criminal who has to work his way up the ladder to become the Big Boss. The action is mission based and some of the missions are a little difficult but persevere because the rewards outweigh the amount of work put in. The best thing about this game though is that you have a virtual city where you can literally do whatever want. On top of this you can choose from a variety of different vehicles to see the city in. You can cruise in style in a sports car or mope around in a dustbin lorry as well as fire engines, police cars, boats and on Vice City even motorbikes and helicopters.
Both brilliant games in their own right but they open up a whole world of possibility for GTA5.
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