|01-04-2002, 10:53 AM||#1|
Syndrome of a Down
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: West Chester
I am in gaming heaven, and more is on the way.
Want to destroy your social life, be late for work and forget that an outside world exists for the next few weeks?
1) Buy a PlayStation2, if you haven't already.
2) Buy Grand Theft Auto III.
3) Bid a fond farewell to your friends and family.
I got this for Christmas from my wife after drooling over it for two months, and it's easily the game of the year for 2001 as far as I'm concerned.
For the uninitiated, this ain't SimCity. It's more like a full-3D third-person SimThug set in a modern city. Our Hero is a small-time criminal betrayed by his girlfriend/criminal partner and convicted of armed robbery, freed inadvertantly when the police van transporting him and other prisoners is assaulted. Once free, he's loose in a city full of vast possibilities, and there's not a whole lot you can't do:
* Carjack for profit, for fun, or simply to get a fresh set of wheels now and then.
* Beat down random pedestrians with baseball bats for the exercise and some spending cash.
* Work for a variety of gangs and benefactors (the Mafia, the Yakuza, the Triads, a Columbian cartel, street gangs, a thinly-disguised Donald Trump lookalike), earning cash by wreaking havoc. Deal with shifting loyalties, inter-gang warfare and potential betrayals.
* Bribe police to look the other way, or watch their response escalate into a full APB with pursuit helicopters, SWAT vans, machine-gun-toting FBI agents and (eventually) the military.
* Carjack a utility vehicle and perform its typical function for cash and bonuses. Grab a taxi and ferry passengers around town at high speed. (Ever played Crazy Taxi? This is REALLY Crazy Taxi, with guns.) Put out flaming vehicles in a fire truck. Be paramedic-for-a-day in an ambulance. (Beat someone senseless, wait for the ambulance to show up, carjack THAT and have fun!) Steal a cop car and engage in vigilante missions, wiping out criminal scum around town. Imagine the look of surprise on your target's face when you perform a drive-by shooting in a fire truck with an Uzi!
* Find unique stunt jumps, hidden packages, hyperviolent rampage missions and other oddities sprinkled liberally over the city's three sections.
* Pick up hookers and drive to secluded areas to regain lost health (though they don't work for free, of course). Of course, you can always run them over with your car when they're done to get most of your money back.
* Listen to two hours of music, including the funniest talk-radio station in existence and some hysterical commercials.
I can honestly say that this is one of the few games out there where you can completely ignore the storyline and still have a blast. You can follow the mission sequence and advance the plot to open up new areas, you can spend time on side missions or hunting down secrets and hidden items, or you can just rip around town at high speed breaking things and running over grandmothers; all three are way too much fun. Option 4 is to use a code to give all the pedestrians weapons and start a full-scale city-wide riot, which also has its charms...
The game was banned in Australia for its content. If you're in America, enjoy your freedoms while you can and grab this title. (It's rated M for a reason, so those under 17 need not apply unless their parents don't mind them playing with hookers, Molotov cocktails and baseball-bat beatings.)
The "more is on the way" in the subject line refers to the NEXT game from Rockstar, called State of Emergency. This comes out in about two weeks, and features a city under the thumb of an oppressive megacorporation. A riot breaks out, and you (as one of five plucky malcontents) have the task of escalating it in an effort to bring the corporation down. Yes, it's the Seattle WTO riots brought to your game console!
Throw park benches through windows. Loot and pillage. Beat down (or be beat down by) innocent bystanders, gangs, riot squads and/or cops. Follow the story mode or just go nuts in chaos mode. Watch up to 250 people at once run amok around you, with different responses to your interaction (some will panic at the sight or sound of violence, some will wade right in to stop it, some will join you in your activities, and some will just shrug and continue looting...)
At this point, you're probably either racing to the store to grab these titles or racing to the phone to give Joe Lieberman my phone number, so get to it.
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