By Maria Montoro
May 5, 2008 - If you've played all the big Grand Theft Auto games since GTA III, you've probably noticed the game hasn't evolved all that much. Truth be told, the game still has the same basic premise:
The main character is a bad dude who doesn't hesitate to get into trouble. Stealing cars, driving around the city running people over, crashing vehicles against buildings and street lights, visiting certain people and kicking their butt or simply hitting random citizens on the street with your own fist, a gun or a big, old bat are some of the things you'll be doing, no matter what GTA title you play.
Despite the controversial theme of the series, the game has been and still is extremely successful. The budget that goes into it surpasses that of several current generation games altogether. That has allowed Rockstar to create an A+ game for the fans: GTA IV is chocked-full of details and amazing graphics.
Check out the pictures included in this feature by clicking on the drop-down boxes and compare the old GTAs with the new one. Isn't it amazing how some things have evolved and at the same time remained the same?
"The Kid," Tommy Vercetti, Carl CJ Johnson, Niko Bellic
All these characters have something in common: they're smart but unemployable people looking for an opportunity to make their lives better. Their choices from the past and the present drag them into a life of crime. Their goal is to reach the top in the world they know best: crime, murder, thievery, and extortion.
When you start the game, you only have access to standard and often beat-down car models. Once in a while you'll get to drive that cool gem parked in the corner. As you advance through the store and climb up the ranks, your character will have access to nicer cars and a better lifestyle. The cars are inspired by real-life models but have their own classic GTA names. The most noticeable evolution here is the visuals. Cars in GTA IV are extremely detailed compared to previous installments.
It's funny to remember how GTA started. You could almost compare those visuals to Frogger! Years passed, and GTA III brought true sandbox-style gameplay, which allowed players to roam freely around a much more detailed, three-dimensional city with distinct and life-like streets. GTA III took place in Liberty City, a mock of New York. GTA: Vice City took us to some sort of Miami in the 80s. The theme was a spoof of The Godfather and Scarface. San Andreas was the biggest of the offerings, mixing up Vegas with L.A. and San Francisco. GTA IV has brought us back to a revamped Liberty City. The visuals are superb compared to any of the previous GTAs!
Grand Theft Auto has always been centered on prostitutes and criminals; it wasn't until later on that smarter business-women and more simple and life-like girls were added to the series. However, if you look at the billboards around the city, you'll still see the "slutty" element all over the place. It used to be that your character didn't have to worry about women, other than to complete some of the missions. However, CJ from San Andreas showed a more obvious interest for the opposite sex and even participated in some controversial cutscenes in the first PC version of the game. For the first time, San Andreas let you take women on a date and have a social life. GTA IV lets you do that as well.