Review

Grand Theft Auto Double Pack

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Developer: Rockstar North Publisher: Rockstar Games
Release Date: November 4, 2003 Also On: PS2 & Xbox

Over the past year or so, you have all heard the many rumors about Grand Theft Auto coming to the Xbox. The whole reason those rumors started was because Rockstar Games’ contract was going to expire with Sony, allowing them to make GTA games for any other console they wanted. Time and time again, these rumors appeared to be false with talks of Sony and Rockstar renegotiating their contract, but finally, the rumors have become a reality. A big reason for the success of the PS2 was the GTA series. Now with it available on Xbox, will this increase sales and boost Microsoft’s morale?

Compared to the PS2 version, the visual effects on the Xbox version are similar, but the little things make it better. GTA3 and GTA: VC has similar looks to them now. The only difference is that GTA 3 looks a lot darker than Vice City. The cars now shine and give off reflections. Also, you can see the individual parts of the cars’ engine including the wires, engine block, carburetor, etc. There is now less clipping due to the Xbox hardware, but it is still there with some frame rate slow downs and seeing through walls. The character models are still a huge problem however. They have been improved a little bit to include fingers and clothing that ripples in the wind on a motorcycle, but that faces and figure are still awful. The weather effects are still second to none. After all this, the graphics are not nearly as good as they should be on the Xbox.

Sound in GTA was great on the PS2 version, but now on the Xbox, it is amazing. The great GTA soundtrack is still here and brings the cities of Vice and Liberty alive. But now, you get to bring in your custom soundtracks while in your vehicle. This feature makes the world of GTA seem complete with the CD in GTA3 and Tape in Vice City. Another improvement in the sound comes in the gameplay sound. With Xbox and its Dolby Digital capabilities, the sound almost as real as true life. New additions to the sound department are in the wind blowing and oceans rippling. It all just so good, that it probably qualifies as the best sounding on Xbox.

Grand Theft Auto has been known for its tight controls and amazing gameplay. Well, in the Xbox, none of this has changed. In fact, the controls have really improved to perfectly fit the Xbox controller. The triggers have been incorporated in the game by using them for the gas and brakes as well as firing your weapons. If you have trouble playing this game, then you shouldn’t play any game, ever!

To be honest, these GTA games are 1 and 2 years old respectively. Even though it was only available on the PS2 during these years, many Xbox owners have either played or beaten it in this time. But despite these facts, you won’t find a better game like this anywhere. Still very unique seeing as no other games provide intense gang member action combined with hookers and fast cars. With over 100 hours of total gameplay in one 50 dollar bundle, the GTA Double Pack is a great deal. Even once completed, you can still run around blowing people away. GTA is still one of the most unique and best selling games in the gaming history. It would be a miracle for GTA not to sell in the millions for Xbox in the coming months. Check it out!

Graphics: 8.5
Sound: 10
Gameplay: 10
Creativity: 7.5
Replay Value/Game Length: 9.5
Final: 9.1
Written by Shawn Review Guide

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