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Friday | February 24, 2017
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Grand Theft Auto IV

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The cover system doesn’t need to be used for you to be successful in the game however as the AI progresses later in the game, it certainly helps to keep the life circle higher when under fire from groups of enemies. Whether you use it is entirely up to you, but without cover it gets very difficult. There are always multiple ways to beat missions, just like all the games in the series to this point. It is this freeform style of play that so many gamers adore, and rightly so.

The cops in this game can be fierce, you will not get far by running around the city with a submachine gun, killing everyone in sight. The wanted system has been revised and makes the game so much more fulfilling on many levels. When you first hit the basic wanted level your radar displays the police search parameter. The higher you get on the wanted level the broader this search level expands, the goal to escape the cops is to get out of this search area and lose anyone chasing you. After three stars a police helicopter appears and it proves extremely difficult to shake. Escaping the police proves to be somewhat of an artform in itself. You need to make a break for the right direction, get under cover to lose helicopters, and even change cars. If you get seen at any time during the escape the cop will inform the rest of his squad and the search area alters to reflect this. No longer can you enter pay and spray shops with a policeman on your tail to escape, because if he sees you enter and leave, he will know you are in the car! Four stars and above are absolutely crazy and I won’t divulge the subtle changes to the wanted level in the review as I really do not want to ruin your enjoyment of finding things out for yourself.

GTA IV has a GPS system which is accessed via a dedicated menu system. You can enter a waypoint anywhere on the map, and the mini map shows the path you need to take to reach it. This same system is used within the mission objectives and you will never get lost or wonder what the next task is meant to be.

The driving has also seen a huge update on previous games with the Rockstar RAGE engine making its debut, and if you pair this with the NaturalMotion’s Euphoria engine, the game world is brimming with incredible physic detail.

All the cars handle differently and you can actually see the suspension working as well as the tyres squealing on sharp turns. Not only this, but the passengers in the car affect the cars characteristics. If you have a fat guy in the seat beside you, the car will noticeably dip in his direction and cornering will be affected. Likewise, more people in the rear seats will slow down acceleration and braking dynamics. Nikos body has a full torso system, so when he gets hit on the arm, his body reacts in the right manner. It is extremely hard to explain but once you see it in action you will wonder how you ever played a game without it. On more than one occasion I noticed Niko battling with a steering wheel, trying to force the car in the direction it didn’t want to go, equally so, he will cover his eyes or duck, right before a imminent crash.

The graphic resolution isn’t native 1920×1080 and won’t look as sharp as you would expect on an ultra high end PC, but both Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 versions are stunning to look at, and the Natural Motion engine just brings the game into another dimension. There are some texture pop in issues and the game could do with 2-4x Anti Aliasing however it runs much better than I imagined on what is (by today’s high end PC standards) rather mid range console hardware. For the 360 and PS3 to be powering all the physics detail and environmental interactions with so few load times and glitches, is nothing short of miraculous. I am however longing for the day when we see it running on the highest end PC hardware (with an Xbox 360 pad of course!).

Other niceties include effective use of depth of field motion blur, high resolution models on vehicles as well as great ambient lighting, both during the day and night time zones. The explosions are incredible and the water effects are stunning, however I really need to reiterate that all these effects become entirely secondary to the awe inspiring game play throughout the experience.

Playstation 3 owners will be pleased to hear that their version somewhat has the edge when it comes to aliasing issues. The graphics are slightly sharper and due to the hard drive installation system the game loads even faster than the 360. The differences are very minor, however it is nice to note that sometimes the Sony console is capable of delivering cutting edge graphics, in the right hands.

GTA4 even has multiplayer, and you access this via your phone from the single player game, which is a rather ingenious system. When you get into a multiplayer game, the whole city is at your disposal including all the people you see in the single player game. You can share the game with up to 15 people at the same time. Everyone has a great selection of weapons, cards and the whole experience is shared via a party system. There are more than a dozen multiplayer modes with "free mode" being the main option. This is a no rules game and you are dropped into Liberty City with up to 15 people and you can basically do whatever you want.

You have a mind numbing plethora of options, such as turning on/off the police, time of day, traffic flow, weather and the weapons available. Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch are also available and work very well. Mafiya Work is another fun mode, and all the players receive calls from a Mob Boss who hands out missions via the phones. The first to complete the mission gets the cash. One of my personal favourites is GTA Race, you not only race cars, but you can steal your opponents to finish in whatever fashion you so desire! Cop’s N Crooks is another favourite multiplayer mode, this is broken up into two teams with Police on one side and Thieves on the other. The Cops have to stop the bad guys getting to an extraction point by any means necessary. This is a wicked style of play as teamwork is the key to success. It is extremely fun and addictive and it a great standalone game in its own right.

Cooperative is also catered for in three various ways. These are similar to the single player experience with Niko being omitted however you get cut scenes and various dialogue to add spice to the proceedings. This mode supports up to four players and has only a minor variation between missions. The objective never really changes nor do the locations but you have control over the difficulty as well as traffic density. They are only a moderate distraction when compared to the full on multiplayer modes and single player game.

There are ranked and unranked matches, rated on a 0-10 system. As you progress you unlock new clothing and accessories which personalise your character. It is an interesting idea however it is slightly flawed as many modes will not use your customised character.

So far we have gathered that the single player game is one of the best ever made, however it will come as a shock to many that the multiplayer modes are also some of the best I have experienced and there are so many variations that everyone is almost certain to find a mode that appeals. Chemistry Help Covalent Bonds Grand Theft Auto 4 is not just a great game, it is a sublime, intricate masterpiece of epic proportions. It has taken a huge leap forward from the days of San Andreas and is utterly worth the wait. It has not only fulfilled the hype, but it has pushed the envelope of 3d gaming to a new level. The city is realistic beyond all expectations and the physics detail is beyond compare. With all these positive aspects it would be safe to assume that there is a chink somewhere in the armour, and I am confident to say that there isn’t. The game is as close to perfection as I have experienced and will last many many months with tons of scope for repeated replay.

If you only buy one game in your life, make sure it is this one …. you have been warned.


Absolutely mindblowing.


Bringing the console experience to new heights.


Over 200 songs with wonderful ambient effects, you can even add your own to the mix.

Will last for months, then we have downloadable content on the way.
(not an average) Biography Writing Service 99/100

The best game I have played, Gaming nirvana.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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