Breaking Down the Best: Grand Theft Auto IV


There were many great games in 2008, but in this feature we break down how to make them all a little bit better for the next go -round. This week we have what many have called the game of the year, Grand Theft Auto IV, which was an unparalleled open-worlder and arguably a storytelling masterpiece. But was it perfect? Oh no.

Here are five ways to improve for GTA V in 2015, or however long it takes to develop a mammoth game like this.

1. No More Man Date Minigames


Because the only male bonding activity in GTA should be where to dump the body you have in your trunk.

Look, going on dates in Grand Theft Auto has always been bad enough, but at least after those were over you got to hear some virtual sounds of pleasure, or possibly more than that depending on your computer modification skills.

But in GTA IV, you now had to go on “man-dates” as well, and thanks to you’re new handy cell phone, you had your cousin, you’re-steroid abusing buddy and your gun dealer calling you up to go play @#$% darts right as you’re about to blow up a cruise ship full of Soviets. No more, let boys be boys and either kill each other or go play darts alone.

2. Bring back the Tank!


You’ll have to get four semi-trucks to push me into a lake to stop this spree.

What’s the point of getting to a six-star wanted level if you can’t end it by smacking your Infernus into the belly of the Rhino? Worse yet, what’s the point of a Grand Theft Auto game if you can’t up-down-left-right a tank from the heavens which you promptly use to level several city blocks until you accidentally get it stuck on a staircase?

At least give use an Apache, an armored Humvee or a damn Segway with a pistol taped to it. We need combat vehicles!

3. More real estate ventures


And if you owned the place, you could ban pasties!

After playing Fable 2 for the last twenty or so hours, I’ve realized that I really like the feeling of owning a bunch of buildings, and getting paid every so often for doing absolutely nothing. Previous GTA iterations had this feature, but for some reason they did away with it for IV.

Sure you can own some different places to crash, but you’re far from ever becoming a legitimate businessman. Let us buy a diner, a strip club, hell if we work hard enough even a hotel or a financial center. There should be some other reward for succeeding at the game other than staying alive and owning 2,000 rounds of M-16 ammunition.

4. More weapons, and a better way to select them.


I did like the combat system in GTA IV better than previous version, but the weapons system is still broken. I don’t quite understand why players have always been limited to one “style” of weapon in each slot. What if I want an Uzi AND an MP5? And better yet, what if I want to hold them at the same time?

There should be a way to implement double–fisting if the player so feels the desire, and an easier way to switch between weapons other than scrolling through ALL of them would be nice as well.

5. Sometimes it’s OK to have a happy ending


Alright how about I just kill him and NO ONE comes to seek revenge?

Life is pain. That’s the fundamental message behind Grand Theft Auto IV. The game is all about moral choices and redemption, but the ending is all doom and gloom. Let’s say despite the fact I’ve killed about 200 of Liberty City’s finest to get to this point, I’ve decided to not take revenge on the man who betrayed me. Well, then he’s going to come and kill my cousin at his wedding. Awesome.

So what if I re-load the game and go stick my shotgun up his ass on his boat, then we should be in the clear right? No, then the mafia gets mad I didn’t do my job right and they come and kill my new girlfriend at my cousin’s wedding

Dear Lord, would it kill Rockstar to present some sort of path to righteousness? Sure make it a difficult road to get there, but at least make it possible.

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  1. I would agree with you fully on dating. But dating in general still sucks.

    There should be alternatives to dating such as fun mini games to get those friend bonuses.
    I say bring back the PSP and GTA 3 mini game kill sprees and races in arenas with more features. It worked better.

    And for God sakes they need to improve the story from depression to killing is fun. I felt bad every mission for being forced to kill so many f-ed up ppl.

    My main complaint is the system though. I think similar to Valve (Half-Life) they need to improve the engine to groundbreaking means. Hitting a tree at 100mph and getting stuck is not groundbreaking,

    – Peace

  2. I too agree on most of the things that should be changed in GTA. What i really want them to do is bounce a few ideas from Saints Row 2. Im tired of the whole “random guy makes something of himself thing.” unless that random guy is someone i customly created. I don’t care for Niko, or the plot. But if it was my character I would of loved the story line. Also The whole idea of your character getting to walk around with style would be awesome. It’s R-tarded that the coolest jacket you can get you got possing as some European biker. Oh and for the guy with his whole “groundbreaking means,” Go hit a tree at 100mph in the real world and show me you go through it and don’t get stuck.

  3. All i read was awesome! and also the comments. Why don’t rockstar learn from other gaames, that “character-creation” is what everyone wants. It gives variation, and makes the game more fun, because it feels like it’s actually “your” guy making it to the top!

    As for the dating, i also find the boy dating wierd, but actually it gives more reality to the game. And if you dont like em, go on a fag date and kill them! But really, what i miss, is more relationships, like that the relationship choices is much wider. Why can’t they make a 100 people? and i can choose if i wanna like the guy/girl or not. I can help or kill the person. I can choose if i want the girl to be a harcore sexy baby who’s always at my side as a friend/partner or make her my GF.

    Then to what I feel this game lacks in, the most. What is the point of money if this game? If i want weapons i kill a guy and get it. If i want a car i steal it, and as we process we get safehouses, which you dont even use:P Why can’t they make the street have more options. For example, add a gun shop with crazy rifles, but it also cost a lot of money, and its the only place you can get it. Add Car shops, with unique cars in the game which costs millions of dollar. Make crazy big houses, both modern and old original. And please, for god sake, add some stuff to do at the house, like invite people over for party, make 10 strippers come over, invite your GF over, let us be able to customize our house, and let us be proud of our house by showing it off and letting some gameplay actually be in there. So what i want is, make us work for stuff, there is actually one comment in the game Ramon says “Here in the city you are nothing without money”. Wow! im the biggest massacre killer, and i used no money. I also have all the best cars!! I have it all, but i didnt do anything else than doing “favors” for people and i din’t use one dollar.

    Let us be THE MAN of the city! Let us be THE BOSS, let us be THE ULTIMATE ONE AND ONLY!!

  4. How about the trucks too. There are lots o trailers hanging around and you cant get your rig to pick them up.

    You also used to be able to use the forks on a fork lift and randomly go around tilts cars and stuff

    The planes are missing too which is a shame. Them little jets in the airport look like so much fun

    And if your gonna fly, where the hell has the parachute gone

    Definatly the tank back would be kool.

    Property purchasing to make you income like before would also benefit. Although i do seem to have a shed load of money and nothing to buy except for weapons

    Still……despite all the gripes the game is sooo much fun and awesome online playing agaionst other gta heads

    Pete @ Work 🙂

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