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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    GTA IV-still worth it for the narrative elements?

    I probably shouldn't be buying anymore games espeically given the world is ending Friday but y'know. Stuff. Apologies for creating the new thread but searching for GTA IV apparently isn't precise enough, too many returns for it to register.

    I mainly want to get it becuase I have a computer good enough to play around with the ICEnhancer thing, but how does it play in terms of narrative? Iím not really too bothered about itís open world possibilities as Iíve over 90 hours recorded in SR3 driving around and blowing shit up, and from my experience of IV on consoles itís not as generous in terms of being as fun and bombastic in that sense.

    From what I've seen/heard the tone is right off in regards to the plot jarring with the open world sociopathic tendencies that the open world allows; But is the game worth having to play through the plot on it's own, would you say? I liek the idea of a game with a big world to explore without actually killing everyone, whilst also having a main plot to push it on. Does it work in this sense?

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    Obviously your mileage may vary:

    Core GTA 4 is a huge failure, in terms of narrative. The protagonist is incredibly unlikeable and basically keeps saying "I feel bad about having to kill people and do bad stuff. OH FUCK YOU!! I AM GONNA KILL YOU!!!! YARGH!!! And now I feel bad. Woe is me". And that is all part of the plot missions, not even considering the sandboxiness you mentioned.

    The motorcycle DLC was pretty fun though. Plot was simple and cliche, but the protagonist was fairly likeable.

    I never got past the first few missions of Gay Tony, so no idea there.

    You may want to consider Mafia 2. I wasn't a huge fan because it was in the tail end of the "Let's make a real life simulator where you clean urinals" craze, but it was definitely a story-focused game.

    And, if you have a console, Red Dead Redemption is probably Rockstar's greatest work that doesn't have a fat black man on a child's bicycle. Very strong narrative.
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  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jnx's Avatar
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    It's the basic work for a crimelord until a bigger crimelord steps in and then work for him until a bigger crimelord steps in repeat repeat.
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  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mashakos's Avatar
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    The dialogue is actually very good for a game. It's still not empirically good, but is not as cringe worthy or full of unintentional comedy/awkwardness as most other games.

    The first hour is great, it slows down with a bunch of repetitive missions around the middle.
    and... that's where I'm at actually.

    I guess it's equivalent to Assassin's Creed: the setting and plot are intriguing but fatigue sets in quickly once the missions start to be too similiar.
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  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    Alright then, riddle me this: Can you use the ICEnhancer for the episodes? Which I gather are pretty decent?

  6. #6
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus DaftPunk's Avatar
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    Game was worth full price if you ask me,its more story driven so you don't have many things to do besides main story missions. I mean sure you can go and hunt pigeouns lol. But you'll see even without allot of stuff to do you'll will get immersed in all these characters,great driving and finally solid shooting mechanics,on top of that add psyhics and you'll hgave some of the best car chases.

    But be sure to download few modes,i highly suggest realistic car damage plus realistic ballistic damage,because without that you can crash ten times at 200mph and you'r car will be fine..

  7. #7
    Network Hub Avish's Avatar
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    Played about 10 hours a few years ago and found the narrative part to be quite fun to go through.
    What stopped me from playing, is that every time you fail a mission, you have to start from the beginning of that mission and go through the same driving, talking, cutscenes, shooting all over again. For me it was a huge waste of time, so I just stopped.

    Maybe there's a mod to fix that.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mashakos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    Core GTA 4 is a huge failure, in terms of narrative. The protagonist is incredibly unlikeable and basically keeps saying "I feel bad about having to kill people and do bad stuff. OH FUCK YOU!! I AM GONNA KILL YOU!!!! YARGH!!! And now I feel bad. Woe is me".
    I thought that was actually a cool aspect of the plot. There have been many cases when atrocities take place where guards or soldiers carry out heinous acts because "they had no choice" or it was their "duty". I got the impression that Nico was up sh*t creek and needed to do whatever he had to in order to escape his doomed fate.

    Not your usual Saturday morning cartoon side-burned hero, but you know what? Not every game has to have one.
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  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Story is decent enough. There's some great characters in it I think, the main character isn't that annoying, his cousin makes up for it though. There are also some really great missions too. You're certainly not a hero or a saviour in this game and I enjoyed that. I'd suggest playing it.

    Also, you don't have to play like a sociopath running over old ladies on the sidewalk.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by sonson View Post
    Alright then, riddle me this: Can you use the ICEnhancer for the episodes? Which I gather are pretty decent?
    Yes you can, the last version supports them + steam versions. BUT you get a red sky glitch sometimes. As for the narrative, I got bored about 2-3 hours in. I just downloaded a simple trainer, IceEnhancer and the better city textures mod. Now I just go around blowing stuff up and doing stunts.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mashakos View Post
    I thought that was actually a cool aspect of the plot. There have been many cases when atrocities take place where guards or soldiers carry out heinous acts because "they had no choice" or it was their "duty". I got the impression that Nico was up sh*t creek and needed to do whatever he had to in order to escape his doomed fate.

    Not your usual Saturday morning cartoon side-burned hero, but you know what? Not every game has to have one.
    For me, it was more "I am supposed to feel sympathy for the guy who immediately decides to murder people"?

    Don't get me wrong, I love stories where the protagonist is forced to sacrifice their "soul". Even when they choose to. But those tend to work up to it. Small transgressions that lead to damnation. Not just "Oh, you made me chase you. I will knife you to death!"

    It reminds me of Prince of Thorns (book from last year). It was trying to be one of those "Dark and gritty fantasies" with a protagonist who rapes and murders. The problem is that they forgot the key aspect: Give the protagonist at least one redeeming quality we can rally around. Like the titular Caine from the Acts of Caine who, while a horrifyingly vicious human being, is likeable for his great love of his friends and family.

    As an example of a video game getting "reluctant monster" right: Red Dead Redemption with the good karma path. Outside of one sequence (helping a mexican warlord rape young girls) it does a damned fine job.
    Last edited by gundato; 17-12-2012 at 02:54 PM.
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  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    For me, it was more "I am supposed to feel sympathy for the guy who immediately decides to murder people"?
    It's been a while since I played this, but I don't remember Niko going out of his way to murder anyone you would call innocent. Most of the people you killed while playing as him were trying to kill you. It's not like there was a mission where you wake up at 4am, grab a knife from the kitchen and then go to your neighbour and kill them before returning to bed.

    And didn't he come out of a war/run away from his homeland because of war? If so I believe the character was meant to be a lot less desensitized to the idea of kill or be killed.

    Also you could say he was extremely helpful and not in any way driven by greed or lust for power. He helped everyone who looked for it and barely asked for favours in return.

  13. #13
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus_Phish View Post
    It's been a while since I played this, but I don't remember Niko going out of his way to murder anyone you would call innocent. Most of the people you killed while playing as him were trying to kill you. It's not like there was a mission where you wake up at 4am, grab a knife from the kitchen and then go to your neighbour and kill them before returning to bed.

    And didn't he come out of a war/run away from his homeland because of war? If so I believe the character was meant to be a lot less desensitized to the idea of kill or be killed.
    I'll admit, it has been a few years as well. But if memory serves, the first murder (and real mission) was you chasing the guy who was (probably) boinking Roman's girlfriend and then brutally murdering him and disposing of the body. Hard to really sugar-coat that.

    And from there, all "I don't want to kill" disappears outside of the random cutscene.

    I dunno, I guess it is probably just the lack of a redeeming quality for Niko. Because Motorcycle Man and Gay Tony's Lackey were both much less conflicted, but also much more likeable.
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  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus DaftPunk's Avatar
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    Niko,Nikola Belic came from Bosnia in which he was part of military unit who did some horrible things,because of that he run away from military and came to America for better life. But later on you find out this was not the only reason he came here,someone betrayed niko so he is looking for that person. Now i only put about 15 hours in to a game so i still don't know how this plot turn out but its pretty good so far.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus mashakos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    For me, it was more "I am supposed to feel sympathy for the guy who immediately decides to murder people"?
    well GTA is basically a mafia movie love letter. Nico is essentially an over the top enforcer. I don't think the goal was sympathy, sometimes it's interesting to see a certain kind of character's story play out.

    I'm trying to imagine you watching Johnny Mad Dog, caling it a massive failure :)
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  16. #16
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    I'll admit, it has been a few years as well. But if memory serves, the first murder (and real mission) was you chasing the guy who was (probably) boinking Roman's girlfriend and then brutally murdering him and disposing of the body. Hard to really sugar-coat that.

    And from there, all "I don't want to kill" disappears outside of the random cutscene.

    I dunno, I guess it is probably just the lack of a redeeming quality for Niko. Because Motorcycle Man and Gay Tony's Lackey were both much less conflicted, but also much more likeable.
    Thanks for the feedback folks. I'll probably buy it if I can get it for a tenner or less in the sale. Then no more games anymore for me.

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  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mashakos View Post
    well GTA is basically a mafia movie love letter. Nico is essentially an over the top enforcer. I don't think the goal was sympathy, sometimes it's interesting to see a certain kind of character's story play out.

    I'm trying to imagine you watching Johnny Mad Dog, caling it a massive failure :)
    A quick wiki suggests that is supposed to be almost something of a "disturbing documentary" and doesn't require you to have enough of an investment in the actions to perpetrate them yourself. So I doubt I would have any issue with it beyond "Yeah... I would prefer not to watch and will just read a few books on the subject"

    The problem is: GTA4 was meant to be a GTA while still trying to make you give a crap about them while also playing up the "horrors of war veterans" or whatever the hell the point of Nico was. It would be like doing Spec Ops: The Line, but with slapstick violence.
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  18. #18
    Network Hub shaydeeadi's Avatar
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    There were also a couple of opportunities to walk away from people instead of killing them at the end of a mission. Supposedly they could pop up later in the story but I was too busy power-sliding a truck over them to consider the potential outcomes. (Actually, i think someone I let live came back to try and kill me at a later point in the plot, so there is that.)

    The physics system is great, one of the best around and although the plot drags on a little more than it should it's a great game. I still fire it up occasionally and just cruise around the city, taking in the sights of such a lovingly made world. The Lost and Damned was a fun DLC with a chearacter I really liked, the motorcycle physics got messed up in it but it was funny in it's own way, if anybody still plays the Chopper vs Chopper mode that was funny as hell to play with a buddy. Erm, I only played half of Gay Tony but it had some great vehicles and weapons which I used in free mode a hell of a lot.

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Kadayi's Avatar
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    The premise of GTA IV was good, but the implementation was terrible. There's a clear disconnect between the actions of Nicco and his intent which just beggars belief as the game progresses to the point where in I found I just didn't care any more about any of the characters. The way they promoted the game you were under the impression that Nicco was trying to escape his mis-spent past, but at the same time go after the person who betrayed him back in the 'old country', but they never really made a strong case for it (although it does resolve itself) in the game itself. Often it seems to me that the main weakness with Rockstar games is the narrative and I think a lot of that comes down to the limitations of there writing staff. Dan Houser lacks any degree of subtlety to his writing, to the extent that there's never any surprise in what happens. Everything is sign posted it in big bold neon.
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  20. #20
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gundato View Post
    A quick wiki suggests that is supposed to be almost something of a "disturbing documentary" and doesn't require you to have enough of an investment in the actions to perpetrate them yourself. So I doubt I would have any issue with it beyond "Yeah... I would prefer not to watch and will just read a few books on the subject"

    The problem is: GTA4 was meant to be a GTA while still trying to make you give a crap about them while also playing up the "horrors of war veterans" or whatever the hell the point of Nico was. It would be like doing Spec Ops: The Line, but with slapstick violence.
    Nah, GTA 4 was not a GTA in regards of the ones that came before it.

    There's no insane stunt bonuses, there's no timer rampages, there's no wacky missions. You can still do a lot of the side stuff like deciding to kill half the city, but that's on you, you decided to do it. You can play the whole game and never once go on a spree on the boardwalk.

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