Grand Theft Auto V Review

Grand Theft Auto V, also known as GTA 5 or GTAV, is an action-adventure video game developed by Rockstar North and published by Rockstar Games. It was released in September 2013 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 and then for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in November 2014.

Grand Theft Auto V Review
Grand Theft Auto V Review

It is the fifteenth title in the Grand Theft Auto franchise and the first main entry since 2008’s Grand Theft Auto IV. The game is played from either a first-person or third-person perspective and its world is navigated on foot or by vehicle.

The single-player story follows a trio of bank robber protagonists, while a competitive multiplayer mode is available. Reviewers found it to be one of the most extensive, detailed and immersive worlds in video games at the time, but its physics were criticized.

The open world design lets players freely roam San Andreas’s open countryside and the fictional city of Los Santos, based on Los Angeles. The game is played from either a third-person or first-person view, and its world is navigated on foot or by vehicle.

Players control the three lead protagonists throughout single-player and switch between them both during and outside of missions. The story is centred on the heist sequences, and many missions involve shooting and driving gameplay.

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A “wanted” system governs the aggression of law enforcement response to players who commit crimes. Grand Theft Auto Online, the online multiplayer mode, lets up to 30 players explore the open world and engage in cooperative or competitive game matches.

It’s a tough thing to describe what makes this game so special without spoiling its most exciting moments, but for starters, Rockstar has crafted an experience that does everything you’d expect from a GTA title — hijackings, car chases, shootouts — and then takes those moments and allows them to spread out into something far more cinematic and epic. You’re no longer just running from cops or escaping with stolen loot; you’re fighting for your life against a team of mercenaries who have tracked you to the edge of the city.

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Storyline

Grand Theft Auto V is a game of extraordinary scope and breadth. We’ve seen massive, sprawling cityscapes in other games before, but nothing on this scale. The world is the whole game, always there to explore when you fancy taking a break from your main missions or heists.

And the way you get around it—cars, trucks, schools, sports cars, boats, planes, helicopters; all of them upgraded for maximum fun—that’s always the best part.

While GTA V fails in some regards, what I do like about it might just be its greatest strength. It is a wild, epic, beautiful world brimming with things to do and stories to tell. It is a wonderful achievement in the scale and space around the main storyline missions.

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The world of GTA V is huge; it dwarfs Skyrim in terms of pure square mileage and is probably roughly on par in size with Rockstar’s own Red Dead Redemption (but is more urbanised).

Rockstar North has squeezed so much content into this package that there’s enough here for the casual players to enjoy for years on end. There’s also enough here for hardcore players to keep themselves busy for months just figuring out all the different upgrade paths you can go down with your character.

And all of this is before any expansions and additional content is added to the game through downloadable updates. This is a phenomenal achievement, and one that I would recommend everyone playing this game, whether you’re interested in free-roam games or not.

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Grand Theft Auto V, much like many video games, has a storyline that is told through cut scenes and scripted events in the game. The cut scenes are done really well, but it can be difficult to understand all of the details from them.

So I’ve decided to outline everything you need to know about the storyline of GTA V. This is good for anyone who is about to buy this game for themselves or a friend. You’ll have some inside knowledge going in so you can experience everything in Grand Theft Auto V’s wonderful storyline.

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It’s no exaggeration to say that Grand Theft Auto V is one of the best video games I have ever played. It’s not just that Los Santos is a world so vast and rich with detail it feels like a place that exists beyond the game; it’s not just that the world is filled with fun diversions and engaging side missions; it’s not just that you can play golf, tennis, darts, and a full-on digital representation of table football.

It’s all those things – it’s all of these things, incredibly well done – but what makes GTA V remarkable is how good it is at bringing all those elements together in something that feels like more than a collection of very good things.

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From the very start of GTA V, there’s a sensation that everything around you is real. Right at the beginning, you have to make a choice – presumably between Franklin (the gangbanger) and Michael (the getaway driver) – while Trevor watches on from the sidelines, as if he’s a psychotic birthday boy wondering who’s going to get him his present first.

You switch characters by walking into one of their respective cars – which, naturally, you find parked next to each other in your first base of operations. Then, for the next eight hours or so, you freely swap between them with a tap of L1/LB and a stumble out of whatever vehicle happens to be nearby.

It’s a game that dares to mess with the series’ sacred cows, casting aside old characters and putting its most controversial protagonist front and centre in a brand new city, while at the same time innovating on mechanics that have remained largely unchanged since GTA III.

In broad strokes it’s more of the same, but in subtle ways that make a significant difference it’s an experience that pushes things forward significantly, appearing both very much itself and thrillingly fresh at the same time.

All that you’ve come to expect in a GTA game is here, but so are the unexpected twists: if Grand Theft Auto is one of gaming’s most important franchises then this is one of its finest hours.

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Now, in all of that, it’s easy to forget that Grand Theft Auto V’s biggest achievement may well be in its storytelling. This is everything a modern blockbuster should be: a film-worthy story with real characters, a massive open world to play in, and the necessary blockbuster budget and effects.

But Grand Theft Auto V is also a series game, and its presentation of multiple protagonist elements pushed forward by Rockstar’s now familiar intertwining storylines and exceptional mission design probably isn’t something you can do easily elsewhere.

In GTA IV, the town of Liberty City never fully felt alive because it was largely populated by extras who didn’t react to you and generally went about their business doing nothing you wanted them to do.

That made the city feel like a movie set, with pedestrians and traffic props. I never thought of GTA V in these terms until I put down this PS4 controller, got up from my couch, opened the window and heard distant car horns echoing through the streets below.

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Grand Theft Auto V is an outstanding game that delivers exactly what it promises on the box: a big, sprawling single-player adventure encompassing both a late-20s-cocaine-fuelled rampage and a more thoughtful, story-based three-protagonist heist. In the process, it’s also raised the bar for open world gaming, pushing L.A.

Noire’s crime solving into the margins in favour of gritty street life, wild stunt driving, thunderous shootouts and a Los Angeles modeled down to its most minute detail in terms of geography, culture and ambience.

Grand Theft Auto V : Gameplay

When it comes to the Grand Theft Auto franchise, you might as well just brace yourself now. No matter what game you are playing (yes I know some of you haven’t tried out Grand Theft Auto V yet), each of the games have been filled with controversy and have stirred up a lot of emotions amongst people (although they are mostly positive emotions).

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The reason? The games are overflowing with sexual content, drugs, graphic violence and language, racial stereotypes and more. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t people out there who love the series for all of those reasons. You see, above everything else, these games are fantasies. The violence is over-the-top and exaggerated for your character’s own pleasure, not necessarily by yours.

The women are objects because you’re a character in control; not because you can’t control yourself. The women don’t even have any clothes on because they aren’t real people–or at least they’re not necessarily intended to be perceived that way.

Grand Theft Auto V revolutionises the Grand Theft Auto series with a renewed focus on artistic excellence, compelling narrative, and technical innovation. The game offers a huge open world of freedom, while also giving players the ability to tak e control of the story and enjoy a more traditional Grand Theft Auto experience.

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Five years ago, Rockstar Games brought out their largest game in the series, and it shot straight to No1. The story of three protagonists played out across an 18-hour final act, but was ultimately overwhelmed by its open-world gameplay. You could steal cars for fun, and if you were into that kind of thing then there were races to take part in too – lots of them. It was sprawling – glitzy but tonally flat.

Grand Theft Auto V does not gloss over the many faults of mankind. It does not have a happy ending. It inspires neither hope nor aspiration in the viewer.

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It is not even particularly well written. However, it is an interesting and complex portrayal of the American dream gone horribly wrong at every level, from society to individual persons. The characters exhibit the worst of human nature and do terrible things for the most banal of reasons: money, sex, power, numbness and depression.

Each protagonist makes choices which are rational from his or her own perspective. Nothing feels truly out-of-character; they all act as one might expect given their individual circumstances.

Rockstar’s last open-world opus took its inspiration from the New York crime novels of the 1970s and their gritty, machismo-soaked depictions of mobsters and gangsters. It’s a tone that didn’t necessarily gel with its satirical take on modern American culture, and despite its many moments of humour and humanity, GTA IV felt like it was trying too hard to be serious.

It’s a mistake they’ve wisely avoided making again in GTA V. This is a game that’s more interested in telling an engaging story than making any kind of grandiose statement about the state of our society, and it’s much better for it.

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The well-written and acted interplay between them provides the biggest laughs and most affecting moments, and the way that their relationships with one another developed and my opinion of them changed throughout the story gave the narrative its power.

Grand Theft Auto V’s open-world is a joy to explore, but it’s the missions that make it shine. The game has three playable characters (four if you count Trevor’s mother), with each bringing their own unique strengths and weaknesses to the table. Sometimes you’ll need stealth, others you’ll need speed, and yet others you’ll need brute force. Each character also has an “ability” that helps them in various ways – Michael can slow time to take out enemies more efficiently, Franklin can do the same while driving, and Trevor can enter a state of near-invincibility for a short period.

The game does an excellent job of giving you a reason to switch between all these characters. By holding down a shoulder button, you can quickly swap between them at any time when not on a mission. Doing so puts the other two into AI control, and they’ll go about their daily routine while they’re not being used. You might find Michael drinking himself silly at his house, Franklin hanging out with his friends or doing some yoga at the park, or Trevor causing chaos wherever he goes.

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Grand Theft Auto V is an exceptional game. It has excellent design and production values, superbly written characters that are brought to life by excellent voice actors, and a story that is both funny and full of surprising twists.

It’s also a huge game that can take scores of hours to complete, with a vast array of side missions and distractions beyond the main storyline. And then there’s GTA Online, which adds yet more reasons to keep playing this astonishingly accomplished game.

GTA 5 maintains the series’ commitment to giving players a huge, open world to explore and make their own. It is set in Los Santos, a thinly disguised version of Los Angeles, and follows three protagonists: Michael, Franklin, and Trevor.

Michael is a retired bank robber who lives in luxury with his second wife and kids (although he isn’t doing a very good job of teaching his son right from wrong). Franklin is his underachieving employee, who aspires to be more than a repo man. Trevor is an old friend of Michael’s, whose business skills can be summed up as “destroy everything”.

The three protagonists of Grand Theft Auto V are a strange bunch. Michael is a retired bank robber with Hollywood aspirations who’s been in witness protection for years, Franklin is a repo man looking to move into the big time of auto theft, and Trevor is a drug-addled sociopath who was once Michael’s accomplice. The trio strike an uneasy alliance after Michael’s botched attempt to steal some rare art from a Chinese gangster puts them all on the wrong side of some very nasty people.

The three characters live in different parts of Los Santos – an expanded version of GTA IV’s Liberty City which takes inspiration from Los Angeles – but their lives quickly become intertwined as they work together to pull off a series of high-stakes heists.

Players use melee attacks, firearms and explosives to fight enemies, and may run, jump, swim or use vehicles to navigate the world. To accommodate the map’s size, the game introduces vehicle types absent in its predecessor Grand Theft Auto IV, such as fixed-wing aircraft. In combat, auto-aim and a cover system may be used as assistance against enemies.

Should players take damage, their health meter will gradually regenerate to its halfway point. Players respawn at hospitals when their health depletes. If players commit crimes while playing, law enforcement agencies may respond as indicated by a “wanted” meter in the head-up display (HUD).

The Verdict

GTA V is a really excellent game for a host of reasons. It’s great as an open world game, and it’s also a great game in the more traditional sense.

But perhaps best of all is that it actually manages to break free from the GTA formula while still being a very compelling and entertaining GTA game. There’s just so much to do here, whether you are creating mayhem with the three lead characters or engaging in games of tennis and golf (I promise, they’re more fun than they sound).

If you like open world crime games, there is no reason why this one wouldn’t scratch your itch, but be warned: if you don’t like crime games or open worlds, there’s very little here that will change your mind about either.

GTA V is the most polished, fully-featured, and incredibly well-written game in the series. It’s huge, too – despite its 100 hours plus play time, I never felt like I was reaching the end. That’s mostly a good thing – it makes the game last longer – but it also means you can get lost in the side quests and red herrings. And while its characters are more rounded than ever before, there’s sometimes too much going on to keep up with.

There were moments where I honestly felt like I was skimming the surface of what was going on rather than getting a real feel for the world. GTA V demands your attention but, sometimes, you don’t even know what it wants you to focus on.

In short, GTA V is a tremendous achievement and the best of the series. The characters are wonderful, the world is a rich playground filled with secrets and random mayhem, and each individual part of the gameplay comes together wonderfully to create one of the most polished games in existence.

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