comscore Grand Theft Auto V: Review
Review

Grand Theft Auto V: Review

There are good games, there are great games and then there is Grand Theft Auto. For more than a decade, Rockstar’s action-adventure has set a high standard for open world games and then raised t

gtav-review-1

Also Read - Sony has decided it will not shut down PS3 and PlayStation Vita online stores

There are good games, there are great games and then there is Grand Theft Auto. For more than a decade, Rockstar’s action-adventure has set a high standard for open world games and then raised them with each new iteration. With GTA V, all those benchmarks have been obliterated and the game has been pushed to unimaginable heights. I got to spend a considerable time playing and exploring every possible aspect of the game and here are my two cents on it.

GTA V is based in San Andreas and you spend most of the time in and around the city of Los Santos. With a map that is more than twice the size of Liberty City in GTA IV, there is a lot to do besides the usual driving around shooting people. San Andreas is a living and breathing world with people going about living their lives without bothering about what you do. You can see girls in bikinis walking their dogs at Vespucci beach, a couple of drunken rednecks fighting outside a bar or gangbangers doing a drive-by at Grove Street. If you were to stand and stare at your surroundings, you could see so much going on around you. This gives you an immense sense of freedom as you go about exploring a world where anything can happen. Also Read - Sony confirms PlayStation Store shutdown for PS3, PS Vita: Check details

From the very first moment you lay your eyes on the game, you sense that everything has been tweaked and improved from GTA IV. The world is grander and looks absolutely gorgeous, the character animations have been considerably improved, the combat system feels a little less irritating and the cars feel more like cars rather than hovercraft gliding on roads. Also Read - Microsoft could soon roll out FPS Boost support for Xbox 360-era and older games

The level of detail is so insane, it feels as if Rockstar has put each aspect of the game under the microscope and tweaked and re-tweaked them until they were perfect. The combat system, which seems to have taken the best bits out of Max Payne and Red Dead Redemption, feels much improved and reliable. As I mentioned above, the automobiles too have been greatly improved and they feel more plied to the roads. Cars have their unique way of handling based on their class, so a sedan won’t drive like a tank or an SUV. That said I did feel that the steering could have been a little less sensitive and wish that flying the helicopters was less pain in the a**.

All these improvements mean that our ageing consoles have to strain to run everything smoothly and it’s no surprise they stutter in between. In some of the busier parts of the game or when I played for long periods, I noticed the occasional drop in framerate and some rare texture pop-ins. But they are few and far between and don’t warrant more than a grunt of frustration.

Moving on to the story and narration; Rockstar has moved on from the single protagonist to three wildly different protagonists. The story revolves around Michael De Santa, Franklin and Trevor Phillips in a post-economic crisis America where the ‘American Dream’ is a part of history textbooks. All the three characters hailing from different parts of the city have their own story and special abilities.

Michael is a retired con artist going through a mid-life crisis, who besides lazing around his pool with a drink in his hand, loves complaining about his family and their expensive therapist. Franklin hails from the poorer parts of Los Santos, trying to escape the life of a gangbanger, but can’t quite escape the temptations of a bigger score. Trevor, though is the most volatile and dynamic character in the game— a psychotic murdering redneck high on methamphetamine and bordering on insanity. These characters also have their own special abilities, which help a lot during missions— Michael can go into Bullet Time ala Max Payne during a gunfight, Franklin can slow down time to make some impossible maneuvers while driving a car, and Trevor’s temporary Kratos-like rage mode helps him deal more damage and take less in return.

When not on a mission, you can freely switch between the three and continue what they had been doing. But Rockstar has hit the bull’s-eye when it comes to using the three characters together in a mission. Many of them are too big to be done by a single character and more often than not they will take each other’s help. Thankfully the characters also have their own set of missions, which balances the pace of the main storyline quite well. This is a welcome change from the earlier games, where you had only one character to live with and forced to relate to.

Coming to the missions themselves, each of them have been crafted to perfection and blown up to larger-than-life proportions. Almost every main mission needs the characters to get together, meticulously plan on if to go stealthily or go all guns blazing. The scale of the missions can be compared to some of Michael Bay’s over-the-top films. To give you an example, one of the mission has Trevor flying a plane into a larger cargo plane, taking out the soldiers, hijacking it and then jumping out of it to see it crash into the sea below. Another mission has Franklin dressed up as James Bond and stealing an Aston Martin DB5 look-a-like with the mini guns, spikes and the famous ejector seat.

There are many such memorable moments, but I rather not spoil them for you. One of the most welcome changes is the checkpoint system, which saves you a whole lot of trouble of driving back to the destination in case you fail the mission. Now you can restart from the said checkpoints every time you fail the mission, and in case you fail more than three times, the game also gives you the option of skipping the mission all together. Though purists might cringe over this, for the not-so-professional gamers this could prove a boon.

There are also a lot of other things you can do in the game like play tennis, golf, go to strip clubs or trade in stock market. Every character also comes across some ‘freaks or strangers’ who are poor souls of Los Santos asking for help. Do not miss out on those missions!

On top of everything, GTA V is also an immensely intelligent and witty game. It’s a full blown satire and the game’s writers have been given all the freedom to target everybody from celebrities, the government to the common man. Apart from fake soap operas on TVs or billboards across the state, it’s the radio that is the wittiest. From ads selling the American Dream to the breaking news about a guy who died standing in line for the latest ‘iFruit’ phone, they are all very well written. Then there’s the smartphone which along with providing a way to contact people, and read emails also lets you access ‘Life Invader’, a spoof of Facebook. Talking of radio, the in-game music is top-notch with a huge collection of licensed music catering to all kinds of tastes. If songs are not what you want in the game, then the background score during the heist missions really reflects the atmosphere well.

Rockstar has also seen to it that you don’t get withdrawal symptoms when you are away from your TV living your actual life. With the iFruit app on your iOS devices, you can buy new cars or planes and modify them at LS Customs. The best part is when you power up the game the next time, your new customized car will be waiting for you at the garage.

Verdict

As you might have guessed from my 1,000-odd word rambling that GTA V  is one of, if not THE best game you could buy today. Rockstar has taken the best bits from all its earlier games, including the previous GTA iterations, and mixed them into a heady concoction. It is the one game you need to experience and a game that will easily satisfy you for the next six months or so. With the multiplayer world opening later today, just image how awesome it would be to roam around this fantasy world with your friends.

GTA V is available for Sony’s PlayStation 3 and Microsoft’s Xbox 360 for Rs 2,999.

For the latest tech news across the world, latest PC and Mobile games, tips & tricks, top-notch gadget reviews of most exciting releases follow BGR India’s Facebook, Twitter, subscribe our YouTube Channel. Also follow us on  Facebook Messenger for latest updates.
  • Published Date: October 1, 2013 12:00 PM IST
  • Updated Date: October 1, 2013 3:42 PM IST



new arrivals in india

Infinix Note 10 Pro
Infinix Note 10 Pro

16,999

Infinix Note 10
Infinix Note 10

10,999

Vivo Y73
Vivo Y73

20,990

OnePlus Nord CE 5G
OnePlus Nord CE 5G

22,999

iQOO Z3
iQOO Z3

19,990

Realme C25s
Realme C25s

9,999

Poco M3 Pro 5G
Poco M3 Pro 5G

13,999

Realme X7 Max 5G
Realme X7 Max 5G

26,999

Oppo F19
Oppo F19

18,990

Motorola Moto G40 Fusion
Motorola Moto G40 Fusion

13,999

POCO M2 Reloaded
POCO M2 Reloaded

9,499

OPPO A74 5G
OPPO A74 5G

17,990

Oppo A53s 5G
Oppo A53s 5G

14,990

Vivo V21 5G
Vivo V21 5G

29,990

Realme C25
Realme C25

9,499

Realme C21
Realme C21

7,999

Realme C20
Realme C20

6,799

Motorola Moto G60
Motorola Moto G60

17,999

iQOO 7
iQOO 7

31,990

Samsung Galaxy M42 5G
Samsung Galaxy M42 5G

21,999

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra

69,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G
Xiaomi Mi 11X Pro 5G

39,999

Xiaomi Mi 11X
Xiaomi Mi 11X

29,999

Realme 8 5G
Realme 8 5G

13,999

Samsung Galaxy F02s
Samsung Galaxy F02s

8,999

Samsung Galaxy F12
Samsung Galaxy F12

10,999

POCO X3 Pro
POCO X3 Pro

18,999

Realme 8 Pro
Realme 8 Pro

17,999

Realme 8
Realme 8

14,999

Vivo X60 Pro Plus
Vivo X60 Pro Plus

69,990

Vivo X60 Pro
Vivo X60 Pro

49,990

Vivo X60
Vivo X60

37,990

OnePlus 9 Pro 5G
OnePlus 9 Pro 5G

64,999

OnePlus 9R 5G
OnePlus 9R 5G

39,999

OnePlus 9 5G
OnePlus 9 5G

49,999

Samsung Galaxy A72
Samsung Galaxy A72

34,999

Samsung Galaxy A52
Samsung Galaxy A52

26,499

Micromax In 1
Micromax In 1

10,499

Asus ROG Phone 5
Asus ROG Phone 5

49,999

Samsung Galaxy M12
Samsung Galaxy M12

10,999

Motorola Moto G30
Motorola Moto G30

10,999

Motorola Moto G10 Power
Motorola Moto G10 Power

9,999

Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G
Oppo F19 Pro Plus 5G

25,990

Oppo F19 Pro
Oppo F19 Pro

21,490

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro Max

18,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10 Pro

15,999

Xiaomi Redmi Note 10
Xiaomi Redmi Note 10

11,999

Realme Narzo 30A
Realme Narzo 30A

8,999

Realme Narzo 30 Pro
Realme Narzo 30 Pro

16,999

Infinix Smart 5
Infinix Smart 5

7,199

Samsung Galaxy F62
Samsung Galaxy F62

23,999

Samsung Galaxy A12
Samsung Galaxy A12

12,999

Nokia 5.4
Nokia 5.4

13,999

Nokia 3.4
Nokia 3.4

11,999

Realme X7 Pro 5G
Realme X7 Pro 5G

29,999

Realme X7
Realme X7

19,999

Vivo Y31
Vivo Y31

16,490

Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G
Oppo Reno5 Pro 5G

35,990

Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G

1,05,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus 5G

81,999

Samsung Galaxy S21 5G
Samsung Galaxy S21 5G

69,999

Vivo Y12s
Vivo Y12s

9,990

Vivo Y51A
Vivo Y51A

17,990

Samsung Galaxy M02s
Samsung Galaxy M02s

8,999

Xiaomi Mi 10i
Xiaomi Mi 10i

21,999

Oppo A15s
Oppo A15s

11,490

Tecno Spark 6 Go
Tecno Spark 6 Go

8,499

Vivo V20 2021
Vivo V20 2021

24,990

Vivo Y20A
Vivo Y20A

11,490

Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power
Xiaomi Redmi 9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G9 Power
Motorola Moto G9 Power

11,999

Motorola Moto G 5G
Motorola Moto G 5G

20,999

Vivo V20 Pro
Vivo V20 Pro

29,990

Xiaomi Mi 10T
Xiaomi Mi 10T

35,999

Xiaomi Redmi 9i
Xiaomi Redmi 9i

8,299

Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro
Xiaomi Mi 10T Pro

39,999

Infinix Hot 10
Infinix Hot 10

9,999

Vivo V20 SE
Vivo V20 SE

20,990

Vivo V20
Vivo V20

24,990

Micromax In 1b
Micromax In 1b

6,999

Micromax In Note 1
Micromax In Note 1

10,999

OnePlus 8T
OnePlus 8T

42,999

Samsung Galaxy F41
Samsung Galaxy F41

15,499

Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max
Apple iPhone 12 Pro Max

1,29,900

Apple iPhone 12 Pro
Apple iPhone 12 Pro

1,19,900

Apple iPhone 12 Mini
Apple iPhone 12 Mini

69,900

Apple iPhone 12
Apple iPhone 12

79,900

Poco X3
Poco X3

16,999

Realme Narzo 20A
Realme Narzo 20A

8,499

Realme Narzo 20
Realme Narzo 20

10,499

Realme Narzo 20 Pro
Realme Narzo 20 Pro

13,999

Oppo F17
Oppo F17

16,990

Samsung Galaxy M51
Samsung Galaxy M51

22,999

Poco M2
Poco M2

10,999

Oppo F17 Pro
Oppo F17 Pro

22,990

Realme 7 Pro
Realme 7 Pro

19,999

Realme 7
Realme 7

14,999

Best Sellers