Booted up Lost and the Damned this morning (never really played either DLC) and will be going through both DLC's over the weekend to get myself all in the GTA mood.
I played IV recently, I didn't care that much for it on release and care even less for it now... it hasn't aged that well and it really is SLOOOOOOOOOOOOW and not in a very immersive or gratifying way either :(
I have to wait on GTA V though because I donated my Sex Box to charity.
Ballad Of Gay Tony is fantastic though.
I tried a couple time to play Lost and Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony but i just concluded that i'm more into that running over people and killing cops business than doing the actual missions.
GTA IV and its expansions' missions just aren't doing it for me. But driving around like a maniac is still a ton of fun.
I did beat regular GTA IV once.
@bigjeffrey: YUUUP. GTAIV had the worst controlling helicopters this side of Battlefield 3.
I beat GTAIVover the summer break in preparation and now I'm just dicking around in San Andreas. If V is even two thirds as detailed, varied and fun as SA, I'll be ecstatic.
It's the opposite for me. I've put in 650 hours into GTA IV according to Steam. When they announced GTA V, I replayed the campaign (it's still great) and haven't played since 4/20 when I got uhhh... excited and played it again without thinking. I'm ready for GTA V.
Decided to try and finally complete Gay Tony. I think I burned out when I tried last time as I'd just gone through all of Lost and Damned. There's a lot to like about Gay Tony, Gay Tony himself, but the controls are borderline terrible (not specifically TBoGT, all of GTAIV), getting in and out of cover is satanically bad, plus the the way the cover camera fights you for NO reason. Missions sound fun until you play them, die, have to watch an unskippable bit of in-game scripting play out for 5th time or endure a simple bit just ot get back to the tricky bit over and over. Everything apart from playing the game is quite good. Even if the story is hard to follow as the plot is scattered so thinly and main main line missions aren't even connected to the plot. Actually, come to think of it, there are only 2 things good about the game, Gay Tony and Yusuf.
And I have RDR which I *think* I'm near the end of. I want to play it much more than Ballad, but I think in terms of any possible returning characters, Ballad makes more sense.
It took me a long time to get through GTA IV. I got to about half way, maybe a bit more and just stopped. I do it a lot when i'm juggling between multiple games but GTA IV just bored me although I did go back eventually to finish it and thought the endings were pretty disappointing considering the build up. I hope that with 3 protagonists, they can keep their individual stories much more interesting and the gameplay overall as I thought the side missions were dull and the main ones just involved driving from A to B to C and shooting people along the way.
I replayed GTA IV just a few weeks ago. I still think it's excellent but I see why some people have their issues with it.
I think the characters are wonderful and upon replaying it - I really picked up on some great snippets of dialog that resonate a lot more on a second playthrough. I agree with something Patrick and Alex discussed this morning though; there is almost too much story in that game. I mean, I get it, it's GTA - but some serious trimming could be done with IV. The entire Alderny section feels tacked on and almost like a symptom of this trope they stick to where the three act story structure is embodied by the three-island composition of the map (a trend in III, Vice City and San Andreas). Also, the morality choices in that game blow. Most are pointless, and in the case of the final one - you have one ending that feels real, and one that feels thrown together with less interesting characters (sup Kate) purely in the name of "yay multiple endings!"
As great as the story is - its dry, very dour nature still feels bizarre in a GTA game. I'm glad they reigned themselves in and took a more serious route, but it is very heavy handed in some places and Niko often feels like a mouthpiece for Rockstar to just spew hamfisted dialog, beating you over the head with the game's themes, rather than an actual person.
I forgot how many 'go here, shoot that' missions there are, and it gets insanely monotonous towards the end. When they get creative (calling a target and tracking them down by their voice) it's awesome - when they over do the generic missions it exposes how clunky the cover system is, how slow and mundane the shooting is, and how bullet-spongey the enemies are.
Plus, all the old GTA foibles are still annoying. No check points, trying to find a damn restaurant to get health, your annoying acquaintances calling you go bowling.
Use your keyboard!
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