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Summer in the City: GTA V sizzles in the high 90s

Summer in the City: GTA V sizzles in the high 90s

Mon 16 Sep 2013 3:30pm GMT / 11:30am EDT / 8:30am PDT

Critical Consensus: Rockstar's latest reveals bad people in a beautiful world

It might not be the highest-grossing franchise any more, or even the first name the reactionary media reaches blindly for when looking to hang a blame on video games, but a Grand Theft Auto release is still the industry's equivalent of a new Spielberg film, JK Rowling book or HBO TV series. There will be controversy, there will be excess, there will the frantic baying of fans, but most of all, there will be expectations.

Rockstar knows this. It knows that its poster-boy IP is a system seller, a public event, a release which puts gaming on the radar of all but the least engaged potential customer. GTA is big. GTA is special. GTA is famous. It's the series that editors love, igniting weeks worth of editorial and news coverage, reaction pieces and analyses, paeans, homilies and unnecessarily grandstanding introductions like this one. It doesn't matter if you're one of the adoring masses or the vocally uninterested minority - there's always something to talk about.

We've had plenty of speculative pre-amble already, but with the global review embargo now lifted, the disassembly begins in earnest. Who'll post the inevitable outlying low score? Who'll be the first to accuse them of 'click-baiting'? How long will we spend over the next few days discussing whether a '10' means a game is perfect or not? Is anyone actually going to read any of the reviews before buying anyway?

See? Always something to talk about. But that's not why we're here. Let's take this to the meta-level and discuss what other people have been writing in their reviews, starting with Eurogamer's EIC Tom Bramwell, who opens the bidding at 9/10 in a review which expresses clear admiration at the world which Rockstar has wrought and the sharp, acerbic humour displayed in the deconstruction of its subjects, but some disappointment that the great lens of irony never turns upon itself as subject.

"GTA4 took a few swings at fear-mongering 24-hour news, right-wing neo-cons and reality TV, but GTA5 is spoiled for choice and the gag writers go for the jugular"

Tom Bramwell, Eurogamer

"Los Santos takes the basic geography of Los Angeles and files it down into something tight and entertaining to navigate," Bramwell writes. "Where every street has its own story etched in phony colonnades or chain-link fences and landmarks are lifted from real life (Grauman's Chinese, Chateau Marmont) or the silver screen (the house on stilts in Lethal Weapon 2 springs to mind), then woven together with practised ease.

"Layered on top of that is Rockstar's trademark cynicism. GTA4 took a few swings at fear-mongering 24-hour news, right-wing neo-cons and reality TV, but GTA5 is spoiled for choice and the gag writers go for the jugular, skewering TV talent contests, self-help gurus, social media, internet trolls, political hypocrites and our obsession with sex, sex, sex."

The big gambit for this instalment in the series is the introduction of multiple characters, which can be jumped between on the fly. For Bramwell, the tired, frustrated ex-con Michael and the gang-related hood-rat Franklin are the pick of the trio, with late introduction Trevor engendering next to no empathy or engagement at all.

"The problem is that Trevor is an asshole," says Bramwell, leaving little room for misinterpretation. "When you first meet him, he does something so unpleasant that you wonder how you're ever going to empathise with him, and before long you're rotating an analogue stick so he can pull a tooth out of someone's jaw with a pair of pliers. These are serious and intense moments, but Trevor is too shallow and unconvincing to justify them, and instead his antics derail the narrative."

1

Trevor also takes centre stage in a scene which, according to Bramwell, is unpleasant and unnecessary enough for him to address directly in a completely separate op-ed, but in the interests of spoiler reduction, I'll leave that to you to chase down.

Other than that noteworthy exception, Los Santos' many distractions are one of the highlights for Eurogamer - a definitive move in the right direction from GTA IV's enforced social interactions.

"There's so much excellent stuff to do, see and hear throughout the dozens of hours you can spend touring Los Santos that you'll easily overlook the inconsistencies in storytelling, if that stuff even bothers you in the first place. This is also the slickest, easiest GTA game Rockstar has ever made, full of fine detailing that smoothes your experience moment to moment, like proper checkpointing and gentler law enforcement.

"Most importantly, though, it's the first game in the series where you feel as though you can strike out in any direction and find something entertaining to do. You can wander onto a golf course and find yourself in a reasonable facsimile of a Tiger Woods game, enhanced after every shot by Michael swearing and banging his club on the fairway."

For all the swagger, however, Bramwell sees something of a lack of self-awareness to the major themes of the game, which ends up lauding so much of what it simultaneously lampoons.

"This is a game pretty much designed from top to bottom to equate the American Dream to some sort of elaborate pyramid scheme, but the message is that hard graft buys you a mansion in the hills, a helipad downtown and a fleet of tricked-out sports cars? This contradiction was at the heart of Vice City, too, but it made more sense in a love letter to Scarface. GTA5 captures the absurdity of modern life, but I expected it to do more than join the party."

"You might catch Trevor waking up in the middle of the desert, wearing a dress. Or you might catch Michael waking up screaming. It's a good little trick that gives the illusion that these characters are off living their lives"

Jeff Gerstmann, Giant Bomb

For Jeff Gerstmann at Giant Bomb, GTA V heralds a return to the free and easy pastiche of the series' earlier titles, taking a step back from the gritty seriousness of GTA IV to re-engage with the comedy element which Saints Row is doing an increasingly good job of emulating, whilst still retaining a message underneath it all.

"With Grand Theft Auto V, the franchise attempts to get it both ways," Gerstmann writes, "with another cluster of serious narrative that's told in an exciting way, but also in an occasionally more lighthearted one, as well. Sprinkle in a little bit of genuine weirdness and you've got a recipe for disaster that works in spite of itself, a well-told tale of criminals in mid-life crisis that doesn't always mesh properly with the trappings of your typical open-world crime simulator, but the individual parts are usually so good that it barely matters."

Gerstmann seems relatively untroubled by Trevor's unsavoury character, although he does describe some scenes as "uncomfortable", and enjoys the interplay between the three main men.

"This makes for a series of uneasy relationships, not only between the three core protagonists but also the people in their lives, be they feds of questionable integrity, methed-out desert dwellers, or Franklin's crazy aunt.

"Each character has his own missions and switching between them moves you to wherever that character is as you join his life, which is already in progress. This means you might catch Trevor waking up in the middle of the desert, wearing a dress. Or you might catch Michael waking up screaming. It's a good little trick that gives the illusion that these characters are off living their lives, even when you aren't directly controlling them."

However, despite the differences in background and story for each character and the RPG-lite statistics which govern their effectiveness, Gerstmann doesn't see much to choose between them outside of their special context-sensitive abilities.

2

"At the outset, Trevor is a better shooter than Franklin," he observes. "This only makes a big difference when you're free-aiming a sniper rifle, since the game's lock-on targeting system trivializes the game's combat to the point where you're just blazing helicopter pilots through the windows of their choppers without giving it a second thought, regardless of the shooting statistic.

"The meaningful difference comes from a character-specific ability. Franklin uses his while driving, getting a slow-motion moment or two while significantly increasing a car's steering, which keeps you from getting too turned around during races and other pursuit-like activities. Michael has a standard on-foot bullet time that makes the shooting even easier than it already is. And Trevor goes into a rampage-like state where he takes less damage."

For Gerstmann, the big highlights of the game aren't in the "typical" mission structure, as improved as it is from predecessors by the addition of better checkpointing, but in the sporadic 'heists', big jobs for the crew which must be planned and executed according to your preference - from approach to equipment to crew members.

"One may require more setup but it might also have a lot less risk than, say, walking in the front of a jewelry store and gunning down everyone in sight. Once you've decided how you'll take the score, you'll have to choose a crew. In addition to the other protagonists (who are usually all together on every job) you may have to choose a getaway driver or find someone that's handy with an assault rifle."

As well as the nuts and bolts planning, more finessed preparations can be made, like parking escape vehicles nearby, or buying costumes.

"Having these more-freeform tasks appear right before the heist is an exciting change from how Grand Theft Auto typically unfolds, and my only complaint is that I wish there was a lot more of it. Once you've completed all the setup, you can head out and take down some scores."

In the end, says Giant Bomb, this is exactly what you were expecting and pretty much what the hype-machine was selling you: GTA taken up yet another notch, exhilarating and beautiful, but sometimes the victim of its own market dominance.

"Grand Theft Auto 5 is the culmination of the series, Rockstar's catalogue and arguably the entirety of AAA video games"

Chris Plante, Polygon

"Overall, this game is less surprising than you might like, because so much of it is precisely what you'd expect from a GTA game. At times, it feels like it was made in a vacuum, away from the influence of other games. But while you could certainly pick out a handful of individual systems or design choices that feel like they've been handled more intelligently elsewhere, none of those other games bring together so many interesting and disparate systems with the same level of aplomb on display here. That, combined with the game's unique multi-character approach to storytelling, makes Grand Theft Auto V an exciting successor in the long-running franchise."

Continuing the theme of general adoration, albeit in a somewhat more hyperbolic manner, is Polygon's Chris Plante, who settles on a 9.5 after a decidedly glowing introduction. "Grand Theft Auto 5 is the culmination of the series, Rockstar's catalogue and arguably the entirety of AAA video games," Plante opines, going on to lavish praise on the game's incredibly consistent reality, a world which pulls you in and makes you a part of it. Still, says Plante, the series has become bogged down with the student politics of apathetic criticism, rejecting the American Dream but offering no viable alternative - GTA V goes someway towards addressing that, but some vestiges remain.

"The hodgepodge of locales also has allowed Rockstar to lampoon a larger swath of Americans than the cosmopolitans who typically live at the center of the Grand Theft Auto stories. The franchise is still relentlessly cynical about the American experience - the college freshman worldview has plagued the series since 2001 - but Grand Theft Auto 5 is mercifully more lighthearted than its predecessors, and even occasionally vulnerable, thanks in large part to its broader stable of characters."

3

That broader stable obviously pivots heavily on the three protagonists, and Plante joins other reviewers in welcoming this new diversity, alongside the variety of missions, surroundings and companions which it affords.

"The characters only do missions you'd expect of them, so it's easier to buy them as people working within their own problems and limitations. They aren't driving taxis, going bowling and assassinating a gang leader the same hour. But it's the ability to swap between the three characters on the fly throughout most of the game that elevates Grand Theft Auto 5's trifecta of anti-heroes above gimmickry."

That diversity carries to the main character of all GTA games, the city itself, where Plante says "no square mile feels alike." Nonetheless, says Plante, there is a remarkably obvious gap when it comes to both player characters and NPCs alike: interesting females.

"I counted roughly (and generously) six semi-important female characters in the game, maybe a couple more if I include the occasional quest giver or victim of theft. None are playable. All but one are shrill buzzkills; the latter has Stockholm syndrome. And the two grisliest murders in the game happen to women. One side story involves the persistent and unsettling harassment of an absent female character, the purpose of which is to show the cruelty of Trevor, but which goes upsettingly far beyond what feels necessary to the story...The script plays it for laughs. I felt nauseated. "

Nonetheless, Plante's summary is unequivocal.

"It's fitting that the game arrives at the cusp of the next generation of consoles. Grand Theft Auto 5 is the closure of this generation, and the benchmark for the next. Here is a game caught occasionally for the worst, but overwhelmingly for the better, between the present and the future."

For that outlying 'low' score', we turn this time to The Escapist where Greg Tito sets out an adamant stall en route to assigning GTA V 3.5/5, taking particular exception to the lack of empathy which the game's characters instil with their cold, calculated criminality.

"What's missing in GTA V's story is a sense that the characters have been painted into a corner by various machinations beyond their control, like Niko Bellic of GTA IV, or must commit their crimes to mete out justice, as Tommy Vercetti does in Vice City. The three main characters of GTAV do terrible things merely to get paid, and deserve no sympathy. There's no drive in them even to be the best at what they do, the last American value we afford criminals, but rather they commit these crimes with no lifeline thrown to the audience to pull us along in supporting them...The three men you take control of throughout the game aren't even anti-heroes. They're just scumbags."

For Tito, it's not just the main characters' motivations which are a little hollow. For him, even GTA's trademark satirical cynicism is wide of the mark.

"Advertisements and billboards for products like Pisswasser beer and LifeInvader, a parody of Facebook, are supposed to be funny, I suppose, but the radio jingles and faux talk radio spots come off as childish instead. Pedestrians take calls on their cell phones, and overhearing what they say to their lovers, their mothers and their agents creates an aural kaleidoscope of a culture obsessed with self-image and fame, none of it especially pleasant. Satire excels at pointing out our foibles, our faults, but that doesn't mean it makes for great escapism."

"What's missing in GTA V's story is a sense that the characters have been painted into a corner by various machinations beyond their control"

Greg Tito, The Escapist

Tito also has short shrift for the limitations which are imposed on the three characters, asking why you're forced to use Michael to drive for some missions when Franklin is the expert wheelman and bemoaning the lack of true freedom in switching between the three.

What Tito does applaud is GTA V's technological achievements, a swan-song for the ageing hardware of the 360 and PS3. Installing the game to hard disk might take a hefty 8Gb, he notes, but it greatly reduces loading times and keeps mission briefings to a smoothly integrated piece of information rather than jarring with a still screen placard.

"The area you can explore is ginormous, and it encompasses so many different terrain types and landmarks that it's almost silly. Nothing hammers the scope of GTAV more then when you play in your first aerial mission. Flying a plane across the state of San Andreas, seeing the sun set behind the mountains and knowing there's missions to complete, characters to meet and cars to steal across each inch of the landscape beneath you, is breathtaking."

Tito is clearly not quite on the same train as the other reviews here, but the initially coruscating responses to many AAA blockbusters are often tempered by later reflection. For The Escapist, there's clearly an excellent game hiding here, but Tito is very clear about what he sees as the disastrous fly in the ointment: the script and the characters who bring it to life.

"If only the morally reprehensible script written by Dan Houser lived up to the achievements in game-making that Grand Theft Auto V otherwise embodies, it would be not just the game of the year but of the decade," Tito bursts.

"Unfortunately, you can only hear a character say '&^%@ you, Mother&*^%er' so many times before it starts to grate on you. You can only embody a vicious psychopath a short time before it becomes boring, at best, and soul-crushing, at worst. Forcing players to murder people, not in a gamey 'I killed you to complete a goal' way that defines this medium, but in a terrorizing and demeaning way, is not what will make video games great. Rockstar had a chance to elevate, and they wasted it on portraying characters you don't want to spend five minutes with, let alone the hours it would take to play through the game's story."

Something tells me that millions of players worldwide will be just fine with that.

22 Comments

James Ingrams
Writer

215 85 0.4
(Talking as a PC gamer) I still resent that Rockstar made it's money from the PC GTA 1 and 2 games and then used the money to go to console and demanded PC gamers wait 6 months minimum for the PC version of any of their games. For this, ever since GTA III, I have waited for Game of the Year edition or waited until the price has been reduced!

We don't have enough militant PC gamers like we have many militant console gamers, and that's why you barely see PC games now that aren't console conversions.Currently the pressure is on for PC gamers to have to go to gamepad to play games, rather than mouse/keyboard!

To all intents and purposes there is no AAA PC only games market any more. The only PC only games are now indie games.

Without a strong AAA PC games market, like we had in the 90's, we have lost much in the way of innovation (RPG's, First Person shooters, Simulations, Action-Adventures all appeared on PC first and where then copied by console companies), so we now get shooter after shooter with little imagination being released on console, with console gamers buying less and less games because of it!

Edited 1 times. Last edit by James Ingrams on 16th September 2013 5:25pm

Posted:A year ago

#1
Popular Comment
I love the open world of GTA's but I really have no interest in playing a scum bag character (s). As mentioned at least before there was some greyness to the characters and you could at least rationalize their plight.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Todd Weidner on 16th September 2013 5:56pm

Posted:A year ago

#2

Pete Thompson
Owner / Admin

174 99 0.6
I also love open world games, especially the GTA series because it's easy to see that Rockstar pay attention to detail in their games..

@James Ingrams..I think that the console versions of games come out first as they tend to sell in much higher volumes than those versions for the PC.

Posted:A year ago

#3

Petter Solberg
Freelance Writer & Artist

63 42 0.7
Facial expression/character animations in GTA 5 remind me of Half-Life 2. There's not been a lot of innovation in this area in the last 8-10 years. And the tech that actually allows for more lifelike representation of human characters is just too expensive and time-consuming at this point to be relevant to a game of this size. I guess GTA 5 is designed for those gamers who tend to think that bigger is better.

If today's games' evolution hadn't been held back by the console war for several years, today's games might have looked very different indeed. But that's me. I'm just a dreamer.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Petter Solberg on 16th September 2013 6:44pm

Posted:A year ago

#4

Carl Hudson
Studying Computer Science

17 10 0.6
I'm not interested in violent murder sim type games, so I'll pass on this one.

Posted:A year ago

#5

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,174 1,124 0.5
@Carl: it's NOT a simulation at all. Exaggeration (and extreme, at that) is closer to the mark. I'm playing it because I need to feed my sense of humor, I don't mind bad characters at all (hell, Kiss of Death, Brute Force, White Heat, the original Scarface and so forth and so on are all movie classics BECAUSE of their immoral lead characters) and the writing in GTA games has always been pretty compelling.

To each his/her own, of course...

Posted:A year ago

#6

Morville O'Driscoll
Games Blogger & Journalist

1,530 1,330 0.9
"...Rockstar had a chance to elevate, and they wasted it on portraying characters you don't want to spend five minutes with, let alone the hours it would take to play through the game's story."

Something tells me that millions of players worldwide will be just fine with that.
Just like millions of players will be fine with the next CoD. But that doesn't make it great, or moves the medium forward.

To be honest, I'm not caring about GTA. Sleeping Dogs had a more interesting take on the sandbox-y Third Person genre than GTA4, and the misogynistic aspects of GTA just makes me feel kinda skeevy (no mention of the Touching-A-Stripper "Like Meter" mini-game here?). Couple that with the fact that there's no PC version (yet!), the current-gen versions are going to be superceded by HD next-gen versions (almost guaranteed), and I find the hype... well, just that.

@ Todd
I really have no interest in playing a scum bag character (s). As mentioned at least before there was some greyness to the characters and you could at least rationalize their plight.
Another reason I liked Sleeping Dogs - Wei might've been a crazy-vicious undercover cop/triad member, but his character had depth, and the player could empathise with him.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 16th September 2013 10:01pm

Posted:A year ago

#7

Sasha Yelesin
Student

54 34 0.6
I'm not usually a huge fan of GTA, and still think IV is incredibly overrated, and V likely will be too, but I'm still super excited for this. I agree with both Morville O'Driscoll and Greg Wilcox. Sleeping Dogs is awesome, and you could call just about any AAA game a murder simulation now a days. In Last of Us you have no choice but to just mow down guys, and you don't feel bad because they always go after you first. How many people get killed in Bioshock Infinite, Tomb Raider, heck, even Pikman (sending things to die is still murder, even if you're not shooting them)? I just want fleshed out characters. And good driving mechanics hopefully.

Posted:A year ago

#8

Petter Solberg
Freelance Writer & Artist

63 42 0.7
I understand the character choices. They are a licence to exaggerate the gameplay/game environment and throw in ideas that might otherwise be out of place. It gives the freedom to gestalt a lifestyle most of us are not familiar with in real life and act out secret thoughts and desires that otherwise doesn't fit into society. Even if you get to play a total madman, some of the personality traits may be relatable. Like with The Sopranos, we get to have one foot in real life while also getting familiar with an exotic dreamworld. But you can only do so much with this formula.

The ironiy is how this huge game world leaves little room for social commentary or comparisons to real life. Though you might initially think that foot is firmly planted in real life, the sense of gravity fades with each headshot. I appreciate that Rockstar never intended the GTA series to be all about social commentary and real life issues, and not every gamer wants to grind her way through layers and layers of political statements and social commentary. I still can't shake the feeling that GTA is a missed opprtunity. It's like an extended action flick.

I am looking forward to seeing how the Oculus Rift may challenge the norms of games violence. It's one thing watching the experience on a flat screen, but we've yet to learn how the greater immersion may result in a different sense of connection to the game world/events. It will be interesting to see if we as players will be more emotionally invested in the game experience. If so, shooters might become even more alienating to some players. If you feel like you're in the middle of the game world, how will your perception of the game world change, and how does it relate to our perception real life?

You'd think GTA would be a series where everything is possible, because there is just so much to see and do. At the same time, these games usually leave me feeling empty, despite my initial excitement. After films like Natural Born Killers and Scarface, how can you hope to say anything meaningful with ultra violence? I'm rarely shocked by violence in games anymore, it just becomes more numbing and tiresome for every game I play. It's funny how a medium that should be perfect for creating experiences that feel like they really matter (even when they're not real), are still busy teaching people not to care.

Edited 6 times. Last edit by Petter Solberg on 17th September 2013 1:38am

Posted:A year ago

#9

Anthony Wade
ICT Technician

7 5 0.7
@James Ingrams

I absolutely agree. Rockstar were made by the pc and now it's the pc gamer that gets shafted. No release of Red dead redemption at all for pc was for me unforgivable aswell.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Anthony Wade on 17th September 2013 3:05am

Posted:A year ago

#10

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,174 1,124 0.5
@PC people who don't understand GTA sells MORE units on consoles, period and is better for Rockstar's bottom line. Oh, please... just buy a console. They don't have cooties, your visual sense won't divorce your brain and you MAY actually enjoy the game on that PS3 or 360. Enough with the master race stuff. Yeah, yeah, GTA started life on the PC, but like it or not, it works just fine as a "lesser" experience (*yawn*) on a game system where all the specs are the same per platform.

Then again, perhaps a PC version IS in the works if the rumors are to be believed. Maybe it's taking longer than expected or perhaps Rockstar is going to *gasp* Use some profits from the BIGGER console sales to fund a PC version (which I bet some will STILL complain about because they'll see it as a "lousy port" for whatever reason...

Posted:A year ago

#11

Morville O'Driscoll
Games Blogger & Journalist

1,530 1,330 0.9
@ Greg
Yeah, yeah, GTA started life on the PC, but like it or not, it works just fine as a "lesser" experience (*yawn*) on a game system where all the specs are the same per platform
Edit: Just read that again - did you mean "Same per player"? :)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 17th September 2013 7:13am

Posted:A year ago

#12

Alfonso Sexto
Lead Tester

807 636 0.8
@Carl

You got that from a newspaper or from FOX News? No offense man but sounds to me like you have not played this franchise before. If the game were to be a simple "Violent murder sim" it would not be at the top when it comes to critics and fans preference.

In fact: If people loved a "murder sim" then GTA would have died in GTAIII and I would be here waiting to play my Manhunt V, not my GTA.

Posted:A year ago

#13

Anthony Wade
ICT Technician

7 5 0.7
@Greg Wilcox

I completely understand that gta sells more units on consoles and I have owned many consoles including a ps3 and x360 so your assumption that I'm pc exclusive gamer is wrong. As a gamer I would personally prefer to play the game on a platform that can do the game justice wether that be pc, ps4 or xbone and yes I do realise that they are obviously going for the higher install bases. I just don't understand Rockstars sudden reluctance to release their games on the platform that made them that's all, bit if a slap in the face for pc fans. Oh and don't use piracy as the main reason, I see Xbox 360 versions of games posted up first pretty much all the time including gta 5 and no I don't download them.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Anthony Wade on 17th September 2013 2:37pm

Posted:A year ago

#14

Sam Brown
Programmer

235 164 0.7
Good Lord, the BBC is getting tabloid these days:

Man stabbed and robbed in London of Grand Theft Auto game

From what I can tell, this was a perfectly regular mugging, nothing to do with the game. They even use the Daily Mail tactic of putting the inconvenient facts ("was also robbed of a watch and a mobile") a long way from the lurid headline. ;)

Posted:A year ago

#15

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,174 1,124 0.5
Anthony, it's NOT "reluctance" at ALL on Rockstar's part and I wish people would just ask the folks making the game why there's no PC version (or if it's in the works) instead of gathering up disgust that their preferred platform isn't being served and project out dislike for the company and it's policies. As for piracy, I didn't say a thing... but perhaps YOU should be pointing those links out to someone at Microsoft, who probably DOES want to know about those illegal posts.

And as far as I'm seeing, both the PS3 and 360 do the game justice, so your "preference" is more like a bias against consoles more than an argument that a PC version would do anything "special" other than look better (and the game looks great to my eyes)...

@Moreville: I was tired, but I was referring to the PS3 and Xbox 360 and how GTA V is the same game for those who own either console (as in no differing PC specs to fret about, meaning Rockstar could focus on getting the game out quicker on console than it would on PC). I'd imagine if they ARE working on a PC port, it won't ship until 2014 anyway thanks to it needing to be optimized for a wide range of machines and/or getting a bunch of new features/PC-specific visual additions.

On the other claw, if they don't want to do it thanks to it needing a ton of time and them wanting to go out with a bang on consoles, good for them and let's leave it at that.

Posted:A year ago

#16

Anthony Wade
ICT Technician

7 5 0.7
Greg, I don't think I need to personally ask Rockstar about a pc version as that has been done over and over again by the game press and there is a petition been started asking Rockstar to release the game for pc. My comments about piracy is that usually this is always used as an excuse for a pc version not being released, which I find ridiculous as the consoles particularly the x360 is rife with it. If Microsoft don't know about where these games are posted then they only need to learn to use google, simple really. My comments about the ps3 and x360 not doing the game justice stems from the fact that these consoles are now nearly 10 years old and they are showing obvious signs of struggling to run the game with stable frame rates etc. Would be nice to be able to play it on ps4 or xbone as much as pc. Also saying I have a bias against consoles would imply that I have never owned, used or enjoyed them, having owned many since the beginning of them in the 70s.

Posted:A year ago

#17

Morville O'Driscoll
Games Blogger & Journalist

1,530 1,330 0.9
@ Greg

Fair fair... Though
I'd imagine if they ARE working on a PC port, it won't ship until 2014 anyway thanks to it needing to be optimized for a wide range of machines and/or getting a bunch of new features/PC-specific visual additions.
Hi-larious... If the PC port of GTA4 is anything to go by, you've just made the funniest joke ever. :p

Posted:A year ago

#18

Felix Leyendecker
Senior 3D Artist

181 200 1.1
@James: You've just realized this now? It's been like this for years and years. No PC exclusive AAA scene also means that consoles are no longer pressured to over-deliver on hardware power and eat a loss with each sale.
It's bad, but what can you do?

Posted:A year ago

#19

Iain Stanford
Experienced Software Engineer

33 126 3.8
Anthony, no one is"using" the piracy excuse to justify no PC release, but please lets not try and pretend that piracy is "just as bad" on consoles as it is on PC.

The piracy rates on console devices pales in comparison to PC.

Anecdote time - Just sheer numbers, the amount of people I know who have a PC and have pirated a game compared to the amount of people with a console who have pirated a game....in fact I know no-one who has pirated a game on their console, but almost everyone at some point has pirated something on their PC.

No one is saying piracy doesn't exist on all devices, but lets not try and imply its equal as that doesn't benefit anything.

Just the sheer convenience factor of being able to pirate something on PC compared to console contributes to this. Its far far easier for the average person to download, install and run a pirated game on their PC than on their console.

Its partly why the second hand market is so prevalent in the console market. The convenience of that outweighs the hassle of trying to pirate. Its the consoles equivalent of Steam sales.

Posted:A year ago

#20

Iain Stanford
Experienced Software Engineer

33 126 3.8
The arguments that "Rockstar started out PC so should be releasing PC" and the reactions of "disgust", and it being "unforgivable".

Really? Companies aren't allowed to change their target markets anymore? Over the space of...oooh...a couple of decades?

Its "unforgivable"? Bit over the top don't you think?

They are under no obligation to release a PC version, now, tomorrow, ever. This doesn't make them a "bad" company.

Posted:A year ago

#21

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