PS3 Review: Grand Theft Auto V

Game of the Generation?

Liberty City, Vice City and San Andreas have been some of the best open worlds in gaming, Rockstar have always provided a superb experience with every Grand Theft Auto game and GTA V is no different. But can it raise the bar once more?
I have to admit I was sceptical at first, I didn’t know just what to expect other than the standard GTA formula of missions and side activities, but while GTA V still does all this…it ups its game with a whole list of things to do including playing golf, tennis, doing yoga, scuba diving for treasure, racing, hunting and even buying shares on the stock market.

The biggest change to GTA is that you play as 3 separate characters, Michael is a retired thief with a rather dysfunctional family and is dragged back into the “life”, Franklin is a former gangster looking for real opportunities while Trevor is a psychopath who likes thrills and is capable of anything. Each character is memorable in their own way and come with special abilities, Michael can slow down time to make shots, Franklin can slow down time to manoeuvre vehicles better, while Trevor slows down and becomes almost invincible. These abilities come at the cost of a meter which needs to be filled before they can be used and they are done so by taking damage, headshot kills and near misses while driving.
Each character has a set of skills that they can improve upon the more they do so doing a lot of running will increase your stamina and so on. If there’s one compliant I have about GTA V, it’s that missions come with a list of secondary objectives that need to be done to earn gold medal ranks and these don’t come up on screen till after you finish the mission the first time, but luckily I had a guide from Bradygames which told me what to look out for and what to do. It also listed all the collectables, side missions and random events to do. It’s a worthy addition to the game, so I would recommend picking it up as well.

There is a big emphasis on heists in GTA V as you select your crew, how much % of the take they will get and how you will carry it out. The first one lets you choose to go in all guns blazing through a jewellery store or you can put knockout gas in the vents and then rob the place, it gets more clever later on and I personally paid a huge percentage to the best crew members for better results and a cleaner getaway, but you can pay for someone less experienced for cheaper, but it may not work out for you.
Multiplayer isn’t ready just yet, it actually launches tomorrow on my 26th birthday 🙂 but from what I hear, it sounds great and is meant to have over 500 missions, a deep emphasis on customisation and ranking up, as well as apparently having micro-transactions to help progress faster. I can’t say I’m a fan of the latter but I can see why they added it.

In terms of visuals, GTA V is the best looking game of this generation. The characters are incredibly detailed and believable while the open world of Los Santos is breathtaking. My only complaint is that the load times are incredibly long and the game requires over 8GB of hard drive space to be free. Voice-acting is amazing and has the typical Rockstar sense of humour and the soundtrack is full of great tunes from all genres.

The Verdict

Many wondered whether Rockstar could deliver on a GTA experience with 3 protagonists and I can safely say they pulled it off and upped their game. Los Santos is the best open world yet and has everything you could imagine and more, I can crown GTA V the game of the generation without any hesitation and implore you all to get it if you haven’t already.