The classic 2001 PlayStation 2 video game Grand Theft Auto III (rated M) was recently released in the PlayStation Store and must be experienced by all mature gamers.
Grand Theft Auto III – From the days of the PlayStation 2, this downloadable game allows you to play the classic original on compatible PlayStation game systems.
Mob bosses need favors, crooked cops need help, the street gangs want you dead; so to compensate you’ll have to rob, steal, and kill in order to stay alive.
Developed by DMA Design, GTA3 is the first installment of the series to utilize a fully three-dimensional living city with open environments and non-linear gameplay.
Additional features include a cast of hundreds of different characters, more than 50 types of vehicles, three hours of professionally recorded music, and a huge array of deadly street weapons.
Special note: this Grand Theft Auto III version costs $9.99 and will not feature any trophies or high-definition graphic updates.
I remember when I first played this ground breaking game at my cousin Tim’s house a few days after watching Colin Hanks endlessly plugging the game on The Daily Show. The gameplay violence could shock, but the mechanics and actions were mainly entertaining and hilarious. Our beginning antics, including prolonged chases from the police, were so hilarious that our sides hurt by the end of our memorable night gaming session from laughing so much. The open world format was amazing, but learning how each action corresponds with each game element became the primary focus. Players can progress without resorting to extreme violence (e.g. grab an abandoned taxi cab and making money around Liberty City). Criminal activity is the easiest to succeed in this game as players work their way up the crime ladder. A one to six 1 to 6 star rating on your arrest meter tells players how the level and severity of crime committed and how quickly the police and ultimately the FBI and Army will pursue your character, a street thug with a checkered past. Statistics of all the actions are kept; 60 different types of automobiles are available and maps help with the complex urban navigation.
This game has the potential for high amounts of realistic violence with harmful and often gory results. Victims of crimes are seen yelling, bleeding, suffering and pleading for their lives. Once the player achieves certain weapons, they can cause harm to vehicles, people, various objects and even helicopters in any environment and at any time. Besides the main character, certain types of characters have the ability to possess weapons. Players must often use realistic violence if they want to avoid capture by law enforcement. Characters are seen walking into a location and being killed off camera, but with sound.
Crime-related violence includes property damage, explosions, car bombs, and remote control cars rigged with bombs. Vehicles have the ability to inflict damage and realistic harm to character, objects and other people. Most objects, including automobiles, street signs, and boxes, sustain realistic damage when struck at various speeds. High proficiency in the game and/or cheat codes, allows players to steal cars without alarm going off, steal police cars, get boats, fire weapons from boats, steal money on the train, destroy/get rid off evidence (dumping a car, car crusher), and/or fly a plane. Players can get a special vehicle through proficient gameplay or a cheat code that can cause very amount amounts of destruction. Players can earn police badges, but they have to kill a certain amount of specific characters in a “vigilante” mode to earn them. “Drive-by” shootings can be achieved once the main character is driving a vehicle. A special cheat code allows all characters to have weapons increasing the potential for violence.
Grand Theft Auto III has constant sexual content with some nudity. Players can pick up prostitutes on the street. Sexual acts are simulated by a car being rocked from the inside. Constant sexual references/advances by male and female characters. Players increase their health when engaging with prostitutes. Prostitutes are high in number seen walking the streets throughout the environments in scantily clad outfits. Once proficient in this game, players can hold prostitutes at their hideout to and use them to replenish their health anytime. Certain missions require players to pick up prostitutes and drive them to specific locations.
Players can experience several types of crime and high levels of emotions throughout gameplay. Emotions of anxiety and fear can be high at times, especially when being pursued by law enforcement or characters trying to harm the main character. Constant anxiety of trying to commit crimes without being apprehended by law enforcement. Constant language from surrounding characters full of disrespect, ethnic stereotypes, profanity, innuendo, sexual advances, threats, and references to alcoholism.
Drugs in the form of pills can be found hidden in various spots in the environment. These drugs slow down the players’ speed, distort the sound, and amplify strength when assaulting other people. The only way players can retain an automobile is by stealing it. Players can ride in various modes of public transportation. Cars are repainted to avoid capture by law enforcement. Illegal drugs called “spank” exist throughout the game. Nine different radio stations of varying content can be played while driving vehicles. Characters in the environment constantly find themselves in danger or inflicting harm and/or threats on each other.
Characters often react verbally when they become crime victims. Some characters violently react when they become crime victims. Deaths can be witnessed first hand or “off-camera” with sound. Some characters jump out in front of moving vehicles and trains. Players can choose to complete specified acts of violence/crime through approximately 73 special crime missions. Players have a lot of freedom during the missions and can easily alter their goals with or without completing the missions. If players complete crime missions, they can earn more advanced weapons and receive money and other benefits.
Players can find extra crime missions within the environment that reward for the amount of characters and/or objects destroyed. Players can engage in special missions when taking a taxi, ambulance or police car and earn money for completing the specified missions. Players can search for a total of one hundred special packages hidden at various spots of the city to earn money and other rewards. Cash can be earned for performing dangerous stunts in vehicles. Players can jump on top of vehicles and stand on them while the vehicles moves (players can also use weapons while on the vehicles). It would be a great challenge to complete the game without killing an innocent bystander.
Review: Grand Theft Auto III
Where to Buy: PlayStation Store
What I Like: groundbreaking/endless open world scenarios, narrative options, strong voice acting/dialogue, stress-relieving and often hilarious action, high replay level, high escapism level
What Needs Improvement: no trophies, graphic update, violent content spreads and can get a bit repetitive/predictable
Source: Personal copy
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