Grand Theft Auto 3
Friends and foes of Fragland.net, what follows here is my review of Rockstars Grand Theft Auto III.
This title was greatly anticipated, as its predecessor, GTA II, had already gained popularity some years ago. Even yours truly, upon reading a positive review of GTA II some years ago, went to the local shop to buy the game. And I have to add though, that I didn’t like it too much, the gameplay wasn’t to my liking and the sounds were too cartoon/child-like, while the whole concept of the game wasn’t. But enough of the former version, how about the new one ?
The game starts out promising, the seventies-style intromovie introduces you to the devellopers of the game and teaches you that most of them were probably born in the sixties and seventies and watched loads of reruns of ‘cop-shows’ when they were young. Each new game you start introduces you to your character and brings you up to speed wat to expect later on in the game. You are a so-called “small-time” criminal who was robbing a bank along with two other criminals. As you are trying to escape the authorities, one of your compagnions shoots you in the gut leaving you wounded and an easy prey for the cops.
While being transported to prison, you’re able to break out with the help of some gangmembers freeing their boss who is being transported with you. Once freed, you’re ready to take some revenge ! Get in the most nearby car and get ready for three fun filled ‘levels’ or suburbs.
For the people who played GTA II, the new graphics will be a shock ! The game is in 3D now and in 3rd person view. This is an amazing improvement, the whole virtual cartoon 3D world you drive in looks remarkably real, as do the people on the streets and the cars that drive around. Trees, buildings, mailboxes, streetlamps… you name it, GTA III has got it and it looks and ‘feels’ real.
What do I mean with: it ‘feels’ real ? Well, stepping over to gameplay, once again a major improvement compared to GTA II. As before, different vehicles have different caracteristics. Beautiful sportscars … well… go fast and corner perfectly, while larger saloon type boring cars take ages to reach some speed and corner like your grannys piece of metal on weels. But the player will notice that every car has his purpose in the game, don’t even try to push a truck of a bridge with your flashy sportscar, but a garbage or armytruck will do the trick
You can drive pretty much anywhere you want, and running over pedestrians is practically encouraged, though a little frowned upon by the local policeforce. Once you go on a killing spree they get really, well, pissed off and start sending helicopters to shoot your ass down. Off course, you could just take your rocketlauncher and shoot the chopper down (which is a lot of fun actually) but then the police calls in the FBI – and they are really really persistant in their goal to take you down. Loads of fun playing ‘cops & robbers’ !
There is lots to say about gameplay and contents of the game, but I’m not even going to try to capture it all, it’s just too much. Let me just say that every part of town has a different gang ruling it, as in GTA II. You’re running around doing errands for the different mob- & gangbosses. Working for different bosses has its perks but its downsides too, because some gangs don’t appreciate you demolishing, trashing and blowing up their interests. As in real life, some parts of town become to dangerous for you – even if you are a mean machine
One of the reasons this game is one of my favorites is because of the sound. Respect goes out to the sounddevellopers. Each car makes a realistic -or at least a believable- sound, but what I’m reffering to are the radiostations on your car hifi-system. From Opera (my favorite btw) to chatroom radio to techno and everything in between. And the commercials are simply HILARIOUS ! I admit, sometimes I just stole a car, parked it and just switched from channel to channel listening to the funny commercials. Seldom is there so much humor in a game.
I could go on and on, I like the game that much, but in conclusion: graphicwise, GTA III is a massive improvement over GTA II and much to my –and everybody elses- liking. The gameplay is simply put, loads of fun and the sound, well, just look at the marks I gave it. Don’t hesitate, this game is hours of fun