Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.
Y’know, the original one. Before 3D. Before Rockstar. Before the world changed.
RPS Feature Before Rockstar
Even as I begin the long process of writing about all of the games I saw and the people I spoke to at GDC, I’ve found a new distraction. The San Andreas Streaming Deer Cam is a live feed of a modded GTA V [official site] that “creates and follows a deer wandering through the fictional state of San Andreas”. The deer “is autonomous and will wander and respond to it’s surroundings, interacting with the existing GTA V artifical intelligence”. Over the weekend, the deer wandered through a gunfight between two gangs, caused a traffic jam during rush hour and evaded the police. This is the best version of GTA V.
RPS Feature Should it stay or should it go?
I’ve been reorganising my house lately, which has meant making decisions about what books, DVDs and CDs to keep and which to bin. This is because I’m out of space, but also because I’ve been lugging the same collection from rented accommodation to rented accommodation for years and most of it doesn’t get touched in the months or years between moves.
This also of course means I’m making decisions about a lot of PC games. For example, the first Grand Theft Auto. Should it stay or should it go?
Our Graham was the one to post about the BBC making a “factual drama” about the Grand Theft Auto series and Jack Thompson’s crusade against video games, perhaps because I could only frame my response as a series of contorted facial expressions. But no, really, they are doing it, and it’ll star Daniel Radcliffe and Bill Paxton. Well, if they don’t get shut down.
Take Two Interactive, the owners of GTA makers Rockstar Games, have filed a lawsuit against the BBC for trademark infringement. See, they’re none too pleased that they haven’t been consulted.
RPS Feature A new perspective
Grand Theft Auto is many things to many people but I’ve usually found a way to enjoy each new entry as a sedate urban exploration game. I like stopping at red lights and honking my horn at dangerous drivers. I like listening to people talking on their mobile phones and I love that accidents occasionally happen while I’m trundling by. With its brand new first-person perspective option, GTA V may be one of the great immersive sims, packed with emergent moments both mundane and magnificent.
The BBC are producing a drama about the making of Grand Theft Auto. Announced as part of the BBC’s Make It Digital campaign, which also donates computers to schools, the project is described as a 90-minute, one-off drama that “will center on the minds behind its creation.” So Dave Jones running about Dundee then, talking about his days at the watch factory. I would watch this show.
Ever wondered what Los Santos, the setting of Grand Theft Auto V, would look like if you stripped out the game’s textures, replacing them with shades of black and grey?
Wonder no longer, because artist Kim Laughton has done just that. More images below the fold.
Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.
I’ve fallen for Grand Theft Auto IV a dozen times in a dozen different ways. Only the first period of time spent with it was concerned with making headway through the miserable singleplayer missions, and that ended with the bleakness and grind became too great. Every other re-visit since then has been far more fun and uplifting.
Michael Dailly created Grand Theft Auto and Lemmings in his time at DMA Design, and is now Head of Development at YoYo Games, the company responsible for entry-level game creation tool Game Maker. To help illustrate the power of Game Maker: Studio, the modern version of that tool, he’s doing something cool. As reported by USGamer, he’s re-building the world of Grand Theft Auto 1 in it, in 3D.
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Hello. I am not Alec Meer. He’s in charge of this, not me. But Alec is on holiday on Cybertron for a week, so I’m going to have a go. Charts, right? Like they used to have for pop music, but with games instead? I think I can do this.
Gamers Gate came unto the people and did say, “dost thou desire a grand dose of vehicular theft at a price pleasing to these times of economic hardship?” And the people didst sayeth ‘yea’ and ‘that sounds like quite a good idea, I am broke’. But now, for this weekend only, Steam has pronounced that it shall be the Don of sales, capiche? Gamersgate asked for what now seems the astronomical sum of £8.74. Steam says £4.99. That’s GTA, GTA 2, GTA III, GTA: Vice City, GTA: San Andreas and GTA IV along with its episodic content. The series spans the invention of the Roman numeral and the colon. (Thanks once again to Michael Rose for tweeting this.)
Cripes – how would you like the complete Grand Theft Auto series for under £9? There are two ways to do this. You can get yourself a balaclava and steal them from a shop, but it’s high-risk, and some would argue morally questionable. Or you could hand over that much money to Gamers Gate, where they’re selling GTA 1, GTA 2, GTA III, GTA: Vice City, GTA: San Andreas, GTA IV, and GTA Episodes From Liberty City, for actually 1p less than that balaclava at £8.74. Bear in mind that GTAs 1 and 2 are already free, but that’s still one heck of a lot of automobile crime without the broken glass and prison sentence. (Thanks to Michael Rose for the tweeted tip.)
Mike Dailly, one of the key men behind Lemmings and Grand Theft Auto, has just posted the design documents for the original GTA on his Flickr pages. Race’n’Chase, as it was originally intended to be called, began life on the 25th January 1995 in a design doc authored by K. R. Hamilton. The version posted is 1.05, from 22nd March, explaining how the multiplayer racing game would perhaps also feature a cops and robbers mode. And it makes for excellent reading.
With only coincidental timing, this week I wrote about the original Grand Theft Auto for Eurogamer – Dave Jones’ game that spawned the empire that led to his creating APB. Does the top-down 1997 original stand the cruel passage of time? Is it still controversial? I write:
It’s not like gaming had been an innocent pursuit until 1997. Obviously not. But it was the year that things got noticeably controversial. (The same year also offered us another chance to mow down innocents with Carmageddon.) And when a mainstream game from DMA – who had entertained us with suicidal green and purple rodents – contains lines like, “My brother knows I’m bangin’ his wife. Waste the sonofabitch before he finds me,” it comes as quite a surprise. To go from Christmas Lemmings to people shouting about “getting pussy”… it’s like your gran revealing she used to be a porn star.