Monday, March 19, 2007

GTA: Vice City Stories - Final Impressions

I polished off GTA: VCS over the break. All in all it was a fine addition to the GTA Series - nothing particularly new or ground breaking but solid with a few moments of brilliance and fun. The Remi/Phil Collins mission thread was probably the best that I've played in quite some time. Remi is an insane German transexual director with a serious coke habit. Phil Collins is Phil Collins. It's pretty awesome.

The "empire building" was definitely a step in the right direction though far from perfect. It consisted of assaulting a rival gang's establishment - blasting the hell out of everyone and everything then purchasing the property. Defending it basically consists of running all over hell and high water - at times hectic - a good trick I found was to constantly drive either a VCPD vehicle or a cab and trigger a mission with R3 to cancel the attack. Cheap trick but handy. The allied gang members are pretty much useless still except as bullet magnets. The added fact that you can't bring back-up on missions is a hassle at times. Not perfect but fun nonetheless.

The story is meh but then again GTA stories are pretty much meh and they don't need to be. At the core the stories are fine and the supporting characters are great. Ken Rosenberg is one of my favorites. Sure he's a carbon copy of Sean Penn's David Kleinfeld - look it up - but it works. It's always great to run across Phil Cassidy - voiced by Gary Busey - the boom shine swilling gun merchant. Once the story gets running in GTA: VCS the story basically boils down to "Time to yell at Lance and then go kill some people." - Thanks to Bart for that observation.

What it comes down to is this: If you're a GTA fan in need of a fix spend the $20. It's fun and worth playing through and seeing the changes in gameplay that will be tinkered with and probably end up in GTA IV. If you're not a fan of the GTA series then there's no need to pick this up. If you've never played any of the series just pick up the original GTA: Vice City or GTA: San Andreas. Now those are impressive games.

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