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Customer Review

47 of 61 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Been there, done that... but there was no T-shirt to buy, 16 May 2008
This review is from: Grand Theft Auto IV (Xbox 360) (Video Game)
Ah, Grand Theft Auto... If you enjoyed riding your bike through GTA:San Andreas, swinging your katana or your chainsaw, going on a rampage with your tank, wasting oodles of money on clothes and stuff, flying a plane, investing or bodybuilding... then stick to GTA:San Andreas. Because all of this has been removed from GTA IV. While graphically it is quite a feast (initially at least, it does rather wear off after some time), and the physics engine has been improved (car damage is now much more diverse; but prepare to spend a lot of time watching your car spin out of control, even when driving at a walking pace), interactivity has taken a huge step backwards. After approximately 40% of the game, I realized I had more money than I could ever spend, even though I had maxed out all my ammunitions reserves (there aren't that many weapons, anyway, and only a bat or knife as melee choices). There are only four clothes shops, two of which are identical. And that's a problem. Sure, there are additional side-missions, like taxi-driving or similar. But since all they get you is more money, but no additional places to spend it, they are rather pointless. Watching TV, strip or comedy shows is no replacement, since they repeat themselves quickly. The included minigames (Darts, Pool, Bowling, and a Tetris-clone) are not good enough (Darts is laughably easy, there's no real way to control the strength of your strike in Pool).
In addition to that, a big flaw of earlier games was not adressed: the targeting system. It still happens that, when surrounded by gun wielding enemies trying to cut me down, I found the auto-targeting system locking onto an innocent bystander running away (even though I wasn't even looking at him). It's also annoying that the auto-target stays and locks on enemies even after they've died, so instead of quickly taking out a room of enemies I frequently found myself battling with the lock-on system more than with my opponents themselves.
But there's online multiplayer! That makes up for everything else, doesn't it?
Not really, since it's quite buggy and laggy. During one match of cops'n'crooks, both teams started as cops (making it unplayable), during a deathmatch with bazookas (should be a blast, right?) I found that the projectiles didn't explode on contact with the ground, but rather progressed into the street and exploded about a second later. And it often happens that enemy players and car skip frames, jumping from one place to another like a bad stop-go-animation, a fatal flaw in a game requiring precision shots and driving. And there are (apparently) no safeguards to prevent unbalanced teams, so if you play turf war, you might suddenly find yourself in a minority, which prevents any real sense of fun.
It's a pity things turned out this way. The characters in this installment are a lot better than the previous games, three-dimensional and more likeable, but the story is too episodic and disjointed. And without any means to personalize the experience (through favourite clothes and weapons), and no way to interact with this huge city (apart from driving over and shooting bystanders. Oh yes, and occasionally buying a hot dog!), the long term motivation is a lot less than the initial size of the game would suggest.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 30 May 2008, 08:12:43 BST
C&E says:
Actually, you CAN buy a T-Shirt - one of the helitours does one!

Posted on 8 Jun 2008, 16:29:16 BST
I Reader says:
This does pretty much sum up the game. San Andreas set the standard and it seems that this one, although brilliant, is a little disappointing! One note to make and that is the graphics are amazing in this game. As a GTA fan then it will be something to buy and love. But if you havent bought GTA before, then go for San Andreas instead, it is much better and more to do eg in SA you can do ambulance, fire and taxi missions...while in GTAIV you only have police (although this has been expanded to incorporate a wanted list).

All in all, a good game with slick graphics, but you do feel slightly let down by this. 4 stars.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Jun 2008, 11:17:28 BST
i guess you could be right, but, in the end, nothing beats the graphics or gameplay of gta4. wheres the mobile in San ANdreas? Where are the graphics. Ill tell you. San andreas is a ps2 or xbox (oroginal) game and does nothing to beat the brilliance of the new game. Whats more, going down street after street in a rhino tank and watching endless pointless explosions in San Andreas is hardly my idea of fun. As well as that the new game boasts internet cafes, assassination missions, car stealing missions, great girlfriends, awesome cheats and a 30+hr campaign. Who needs taxi and ambulance missions?
Best bit in the new game? driving down a busy *pavement* in Algonquin full of juicy, innocent pedestrians... hahaha :D

Posted on 29 Jul 2008, 02:46:28 BST
lily01 says:
Yeah i completly agree i think that GTA:SA is much better than GTA:4 i mean there is some cool new stuff but they left out a lot of the good things than SA had and lets be honest the GTA:4 missions are weak chase this person and kill them i remeber when i did 5 different missions in a row and they were all practically the same

Posted on 16 Jan 2010, 10:47:18 GMT
Daniel dale says:
Doesnt anyone realise that like gta 3 and vice city, this game is a precurser to the big all out game, they are testing the boundaries here and finding out the graphical problems, youll get your GTA san andreas again, but itll be better because a game like this has been made to test the problems that are out there, like laggy multiplayer or new graphics which in all honesty are amazing for the standard that is the Xbox 360 which is not the best processing machine at all, just give it some time and they will push the boundaries ;)
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