Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

I can’t believe it’s here, and has been in stores now for 4 days and I didn’t notice:

It’s not as if I wasn’t paying attention, but then, work’s been really busy.
I’m running out now to buy it. I’ll post comments about it as I’m working my way through it. Update: I finished the game in 31 hours of playing. In the game, 135 days of game time has passed. My review is below.

Cars: There are lots of new car types in Vice City. I think the greatest improvement is in the area of two wheeled vehicles. Besides the highway cruisers, there’s a Japanese speed bike, a dirt bike, and of course mopeds. There’s even a special brand of moped for delivering pizzas. I’ve spent a lot of time touring the city on mopeds. Lest you think you can ignorantly drive around, you’ll soon discover that one of the missions is a stolen car ring, a la Fast and the Furious. You have to steal particular brands of cars and bring them back to the shop. This means that you have to learn the actual makes/models of the cars in order to complete these missions. Turns out all those low slung sports cars look the same.

The City Yeah, the city’s pretty damn big. The world is made up of two large, Manhatten-shaped islands with bridges and smaller bridges in between them. The map is huge, and not only do you spend a lot of time on the road, you also spend a good deal of time on rooftops, in the air, and within some special buildings like malls.

Planes and Helicoptors Oh yeah, did I mention you can fly? None of that wussy ‘3 seconds airborne’ crap from the last game. In this one you get serious airtime through helicoptors and seaplanes. And when you finish the last mission in the game, you are given a special military helicoptor that fires missiles. The best part about flyinig in the game is that it allows you to go places the designers probably hadn’t thought to much about.

Making cheddar Money in Vice City is really hard to get at first. In the beginning you really have to economize in order to be able to afford to buy the shady businesses that will create your income stream. Once you’ve got a couple, though, you will start to really rack up cash, and money loses meaning in the game. In particular, once you’ve setup the counterfeiting ring, you’ll find that money is no problem.

What’s next? Now that I’ve finished it, I’m going to complete some of the side missions, but I’ll probably lose interest pretty quickly and put my Playstation away until I get The Getaway when it’s released in late December. I don’t have a completion complex, so I don’t need to find every little Easter Egg in the game.