Grand Theft Auto IV sucks.

Yesterday night, I finally managed to finish the last mission. I’m now 70-something percent through the game, only having side missions and other stuff left. But I’m not gonna play that anymore. I am so damn bored from the game!

I’ve played GTA. GTA II. GTA III. Vice City. San Andreas. I enjoyed them all, except San Andreas, and after reading some reviews of GTA 4 it became clear that I would love it. And I did, for the first three days or so. I really enjoyed driving around Liberty City in 1080P Full HD listening to cool radio stations in Dolby Digital with awesome music and all.

Don’t get me wrong, visually the game is absolutely gorgeous, the best there is at the moment probably, the radio stations are great as always… There’s only one problem, and that’s a big one: The missions are so boring. So unbelievable boring.

They keep repeating themselves too much. GTA 3 and Vice City had missions that rocked so hard, they were always different and tough but yet manageable. GTA 4 has some cool missions, the bank robbery for example, or the last one. But 95% of the missions are in the end like this: You drive 5 minutes to the contact mission point. Then you drive 5 minutes to point A to pick something up. Then you drive 5 more minutes to bring it to point B. Then you drive 5 minutes back to the contact mission point for the next mission. And so on.

C’mon! One helicopter mission with shooting? And I don’t even shoot myself? Where are the tanks, the military? Why is there no mission to blow up a landing or starting airplane? Why do I only fly that idiot Brucie around all the time? Why are there 50 car pick-up missions that take hours to complete and that are not different at all?

Do young people nowadays enjoy simply driving through huge digital cities all the time?

And the police is a goddamn joke in this part. One star is like no star. Two stars are easy to get rid off, too. Three stars? Just drive fast on a long street. Four or five stars? Get to a paint shop. Boring! Too easy!

And then there’s some five missions that are so unbelievable difficult that you wonder who the hell made them and why he didn’t invent all of them. The best mission anyway, in any GTA game, was the golf club mission in GTA 3. That mission was difficult, funny, challenging, rememberable, it could be solved in different ways… Now that was a mission that you’ll never forget. I’ll remember GTA 4 as the game where I had to drive around 95% of the playing time. And that’s just sad, isn’t it?

You failed to impress me, Rockstar. Sorry. It’s great to see that you’re using all the technology to create these wonderful, colorful, vivd worlds for players – but next time, increase the budget for those who develop missions. Then it’ll be truly great.

Digg this review.

About the author

Jakob Montrasio

Moved to Shanghai in 2k5. Opened a company, wrote film scripts, shot first feature. Now in Germany with wife and daughter.

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24 thoughts on “Grand Theft Auto IV sucks.

  1. I would like to add gta 5 should use something like the cry engine 3 or something even better! How you can interact with your environment is far more important than a great looking world you simply can’t do much with.

  2. Gta 4 was ok I played most of it for the pc and really enjoyed the gun fights pretty intense! The driving sucked it took a serious learning curve to get good at it evenutally I did. I hated the fact you never progressed as a player like gta 4 max health bonues,drivign skill etc.. Face gta 4 san andreas was more fun and most of the maers at the time were younger were simply getting older as gamerz… Doesn’t mean we don’t want action though we just demand a smooth plot that doesn’t drag which gta 4 did badly. The city sucked in many ways hated the way it was laid out tightr weird turns etc.. There were great touches like the staute of liberty and the the water looked great. Let’s face it though far cry 2 looked nice but was often boring as hell.Gta 5 needs fun it’s that simple stuff like snowboarding, bmx card mods hanggliding,skydiiving missions. How about a mission were you have to skydive black ops style and penertrate a nuclear submarine? To me mount chiliad put san andreas on the map i loved the bmx bikes don’t get me wrong la ssantos was great but the gang thing really din;t do it for me not sayiing it was a bad story though because it was great! San adreas had it’s problems but was far superior in fun.

  3. you people are fucking retarded, that comment about they don’t die is because you didn’t fucking kill the person. The way gta iv works is you take out the health bar and there in a pretty close to dead state, if you’re able to shoot them and they don’t scream or anything than that means they are really dead. the comment on not being able to do shit in different ways on the missions is bullshit too, i mean if you wanted to you could even be a rat and call the cops and they will help you on the missions, but you people don’t know that, why cuz you don’t even explore the fucking game to figure this shit out, you can also make certain decisions in the game that affect it in different ways. I’ll let you guys explor maybe pull your head out of your ass and figure certain things out, but for now i’ll let you be retarded and diss a completely flawless game

  4. Visually, Grand Theft Auto IV is a very impressive game. Unfortunately, it’s not all that fun due to a number of serious gameplay flaws. The missions are too repetitive and the play control leaves a lot to be desired. When driving, it’s far too easy to spin out of control or run into something and come to a complete standstill. This makes the missions where you need to race somebody or chase somebody incredibly frustrating. In chase missions it seems as if nine times out of ten the person your chasing will get away because you spun out of control and crashed into something. The designers don’t give you enough time to catch back up to them, either. It takes so long to get your vehicle unstuck that by the time you do the person your chasing has already escaped.

    Oh, and forget trying to drive a motorcyle. They handle even worse than cars. Often times, when trying to outrun the police, I just do it on foot since controlling the vehicles in this game is ridiculous. And that’s another huge problem; the police. There are far too many in this game. Seems as if there’s a cop around every corner which makes committing any type of crime and getting away with it nearly impossible. For example, you can be deep in an alleyway and pop one shot off at a pigeon and the next thing you know you have a wanted level and have to waste a few minutes outrunning the police. How fun is that? Not very.

    This game’s more frustrating than it is fun. Great to look at… not so great to play. I bought Red Dead Redemption and am enjoying that far more.

  5. I completely agree. Haven’t just spent money on it I was all excited and all. It was great for a bit but then I realized that it just wasn’t the same. Rampages aren’t even fun anymore like they were in the previous GTA’s. I find the missions completely slow and tedious to the point where my frustration builds up and I get a fucking migraine. (I lack tolerance and patience) Now I just can’t be arsed to complete the game, having to repeat the same boring bollocks over and over. It’s not even fun, it’s more of a chore so you can unlock the city. Fuck it. Rockstar aren’t even releasing Red Dead redemption on PC either, which sucks ass.

  6. I completed the GTA IV storyline a few days ago. I really enjoyed the game and I think its one of the awesomest games I’ve ever played. However, when I read you guys’ comments I realized that Rockstar had a lot of opportunities to make the missions a lot more interesting. For example: I noticed the correctional facility in Alderney on the map. I was hoping that this place would be the scene of a long and difficult mission. (Help one of the characters escape from the prison by using a helicopter or maybe even break Niko out.) When one of the McReary brothers ended up in jail, I got all exited and knew that a cool mission was about to start. What followed was a cutscene from inside and that was all that would ever happen at this place.
    It is just an example of the many things that Rockstar could have done to make the missions more spectacular. Imagine the Rotterdam Tower, or the airport as places for missions. Wouldn’t that be great? Noting ever happened at those places that involved Niko. Instead, there are like three missions where you have to chase a person on a motorbike and kill him. They were almost identical!(and shooting on a bike and riding through busy manhattan traffic at the same time was so difficult to me that it made me yell at the TV screen).
    I also missed flying airplanes. Something I LOVED in GTA SA. I understand that Liberty city is not the place to fly 747’s from A to B, but I missed the opportunity.
    Now, the storyline is over and all that I have left is 200 birds that need to be shot and all those stuntjumps etc. That takes to much time for me.

    Luckely, I bought Red Ded Redemption today, right when I started to get bored with GTA IV. Game looks even more amazing than IV :)

  7. I really agree that this game is suck not because the game it self sucked no its good i mean its just suck cuz it used the grand theft auto franshise name when it didnt deserve it the graphics and new engine in rock that is fact but anything else is sucks big time i wanna ask u all a question can u count the good stuff that removed from san andreas to devolp this shit i guess u will be countin forever

  8. GTA4 is awful. I have tried so hard to like it, but just can’t. You shouldn’t have to force yourself to play a game thinking you’ll eventually “get it” and understand why everyone else allegedly likes it and why it has sold so many copies. I will admit that the culture or environment created within the city and all of its people and the radio stations and all of that is kind of cool, but I don’t play games to just be immersed in something kind of cool. I play games, and I would think most others do too, to be challenged, to win, to lose, to kick some ass, or get my ass kicked, to accomplish, to find a way to get through a scene I didn’t think I could get through. And, along the way some cool graphics and characters would be great, but the action and the challenge come first. And most of all, honestly, I hate GTA4 because the controls, both on foot and in the car are ridiculously sloppy. Give me some precision. The shooting is awful too. And the monotonous driving across town to start in on a new mission is just too much. Sorry, this game is a loser.

  9. Things that suck about GTA4:

    1. The controls. Most of the cars have terrible handling. Turning a corner should be something I do in the process of getting somewhere, not a ^%@#$ mission in itself.

    2. Blurriness when driving at high speeds. Really? My vision doesn’t get blurry when I’m on the highway. WTF.

    3. Map too big. It seemed like an awesome idea, but for %$@# sake, how many hours do I want to spend driving a fake car in a fake world? Might be alright if the driving controls didn’t suck, but bouncing off of buildings for 5 minutes just to get to point B in a mission is lame.

    4. Plot/writing/cut scenes. The writers of this instalment seem to have forgotten that the series is essentially comedic. The game takes itself too seriously, and all the characters are going for a goddamn Academy Award for outstanding dramatic performance. I get it, you want me to kill someone. You could say it in less than 5 minutes.

    5. The music sucks. The radio is one of the best things about the older GTAs. WTF is this %$@#$? Turn it off.

    Such an unbelievable disappointment. Total trash. I’m going to fire up the PS2 and play Vice City instead.

  10. I wouldn’t say the game sucks, but it surely has a lot of nuisances
    They tried to put realism in the driving, but really failed doing so. Sometimes if you bump a car at 5 mph it just flips over. Or taking a turn at very low speed makes you skid out of control. Also when you shoot someone on the street, they die, but when you walk away and turn back, you can see them get up again. How realistic is that?
    And please, I don’t want to bowl or shoot some pool I want to kill people and get chased by the police. But even that feels unbalanced, as I said, people don’t really die and the police seems to be everywhere even in the smallest street or alley, they are there all the time. Again, how realistic is that? And stripclubs? It’s ok to shoot random people on the street, stab old ladies, rob banks etc, but they can’t show a naked boob? Really how lame is that? At least they could have let the stripclub part out then.
    Now that I think of it, I do feel the game sucks. I hope they return my money this afternoon.

  11. Realism… you complain about fuckin realism ? Back in good ol gta sa day you complained about realism because there wasnt any of it. Now we have fuckin great GTA game being spammed by whiny bitches like you ? This game is only reason i bought new PC, only fuckin reason

  12. Well I don’t know what otronix is smoking, but personally I think the game is crap! The fun of all the other gta’s was the gangs the, mindless killing, mission diversity, cars handled better. Granted that’s not how cars handle in real life, but that made it just that much more fun.
    Now it’s just driving…video catch a train….video buy clothes….video, hellooo a game is supposed to be entertaining!
    Instead of improving on the already great features of their prequals they just dropped them, now it’s just a very…very…very…longwinded movie.

    Also this game might be entertaining to say my grandma! Then she could practice her driving skill…lol. But not for me an avid gamer, and lets face it my grandma hasn’t got the system req’s to play the game.

    Rockstar should learn their lesson from this, and I for one hope it turns out to be a big flop! Unbeleavable I can’t believe their charging money for this!

    Rockstar! You can have your game back, and you can stick where the sun don’t shine, I hope it makes your ass bleed…allot.

    To those that are still saying it rocks….you guys obviously haven’t played any decent games, and should stick with dora the explorer. Instead of pretending to be one of the big boys!

    ..!..Rockstar..!.. GTAIV give us a real game!


  13. How DARE you.

    Okay, you do have a point about failing missions being annoying. They could have given you some checkpoints.

    But when you fail a mission, you’re mad right?

    Especially when you fail it unfairly. Well dude… take that rage and kill everything you see! That’s what GTA4 is all about. Changing the game plan.

    You have to do a fair bit of role-playing, and kind of change the way you play games, but its worth it.

    And don’t attack my sacred cow again!

    BTW: my captcha image is “man spices”
    Thanks for making me type “man spices”

  14. I agree completely with all the complaints stated — the drive time between missions is outrageous. At least in San Andreas, you had multiple safehouses to choose the one closest to the current mission giver — in GTA IV I can’t remember any that put me within half an island distance to a mission marker, except for maybe Vlad in Hove Beach.

    My other complaint with the missions is not only that they alternate between “shoot everybody at x location” or “chase guy and kill him”, but there’s no open-endedness to the game anymore. In GTA III when you had to pick up the Manana with the body in it and the Forelli brothers were lying in wait to chase you, you could set up busses in their path or begin by shooting their vehicles — all number of approaches to the start of that car chase. Now every mission in GTA IV is “cinematic” so they’ve got all these restrictive properties to them. They can only be completed one way. Take the car chase of Darden, Roman’s loan shark — if you tried to park a bus in his path, the game will remove it.

    And since everything has to happen in one way in the missions, and the new car physics cause me to hit a bustop, I get to play the mission 2+ times all over again! There goes the replay value out the window.

  15. Not only that, I stop playing when I got stuck in a mission in which I had to drive from Harlem to Downtown Manhattan, (like 5 to 8 minutes) only to fail the mission in less than a minute and go back to driving from Harlem all over again. Would it hurt them to save the game once you arrive to the actual mission? This is nos fun, this is just bull crap! I hope this cost them the game of the year award.

  16. Jakob, I do understand your point.
    The game’s diversity just draws from its details and the things that happen around the missions. If you don’t like them, don’t notice them or plainly just don’t care about them, as I said, I’d agree with you the missions being pretty lame, because for themselves, they are :-) Also, I agreed with you the missions surely would gain from more using all these settings. That said, GTA IV just isn’t a game you play just for the sake of finishing it, especially if you have little time. It does not offer at least 40 hours of gameplay, it needs them. Rather, it’s more like playing for playing it, exploring it, with the missions giving a guideline.
    If you just demand a quick satisfaction and a mission driven gameplay, GTA IV is just to disappoint you.

    (Yesterday, I spent nearly an hour reading Internet sites in GTA IV, like Hillarious :-) Many things do not have a purpose, not everything’s got a meaning, not every action has a reward, but so what? It’s for recreation, not for rewarding. (Still, you can “use” any location for an online game, maybe you should give it a try.))

  17. Dear Ben, either you misunderstood me or I didn’t make my thoughts really clear. I absolutely enjoyed the virtual reality in GTA 4 – in the first three days or so. I was amazed to hear the radio DJ’s talk about something that I had just done in a mission. The connection of everything is really, really neat, no question.

    My point is, that after some time, the missions get so boring and similar to each other that there is almost no difference between driving freely around or driving around for a mission anymore. That’s what I want to say. They put so much time into designing this wonderful Liberty City, but then they didn’t really use all the cool things in awesome missions!

    Why is there no mission that has something to do with the cool stadium, for example? Why is there no mission to free Gerry from the jail? Why is there no mission that somehow involves all these awesome skyscrapers downtown?

    If you give me some time to drive around the city, I’ll probably find over 50 more things that are great but not being used at all. I remember that the old GTA games had much more interesting missions, they were quite different from each other and it was a joy to drive from one point to another, getting ready for the next one. Maybe you ought to give GTA 3 a try, you’ll quickly notice what I’m talking about.

    I also don’t play so many games anymore, in fact, GTA 4 was the first game I finished in the last, what, 4 years? And because I don’t have so much time to play games anymore I find even more disturbing to spend the little time I have by driving around so much.

    Again, there’s nothing wrong with GTA’s microcosmos, as you call it. But all the raving reviews point out way too little the similarity of the missions. This is the reason why I thought of writing about this issue at all. I hope you understand my point of view now…

  18. ok gta 4 has excellent graphics but lacks in game play and design. perhaps the team is too large and disconnected. why is driving so important in missions but then the vehicle handling so poor.and what is the 200 pigeons about? ok i shoot them but i get no money nothing spawns at my safe houses. gta 4 sucks

  19. While I agree with you about the not very depth mission design – boy, this virtual city has soooo many different and unique possibilities, like you mentioned a few – I don’t agree with you about not being impressed.

    Maybe it’s because I don’t play games too often (I haven’t played any of the GTA IIIs for example) and thus I’m more easily impressed when it comes to games. Still, it’s not I had been “flashed” instantly as I wasn’t hooked up when I started to play GTA IV. I didn’t like the comic-like graphics, the cheesy controls, and the “serbocroaticrussianitalian” mix too much in the beginning.

    It took some time. As the game progressed, it really drew me into it, not only for the great music. It’s the way the game is presented, with a very good story telling, overdrawn yet very appealing characters, the sarcasm and subtext in almost all of the dialogs. The love for details; like window washers, people talking on their phones, arguing – this whole lively microcosm that takes place completely unrelated to you and your actions (until you choose to force them); places you can visit that have nothing to do with the story. The media in this medium! Radio stations talking about events you just attended (and mostly caused), writing about them “online”, the making fun of existing things in our reality. (Also, you could sit for hours and watch television.) There is so much going on! So many things and so many details that are so incredibly witty.

    Maybe you’re right about it being some kind of a “living in a city”-simulator, but it does so amazingly well. It’s not just running from A to B anymore, this is what game designers always dreamt about: actually living a story, in its truest sense (there’s still some compromise, of course), in a (sandbox) open world, and this requires some kind of movement and actions (I even got used to meeting my “friends”).

    I imagine the game to be pretty boring if you only hunt from one mission to another, but if you give the game exactly what you criticise about it, to cruise around, let things happen, this is where the game starts to take off. Now playing the game for a second time, I even take more time, and although I know “what’s happening”, I only find more things I hadn’t seen before, so many places I haven’t visited, side quests I didn’t do before (they make 40% of the game and lots more of the playtime).

    For me, GTA IV currently provides the highest grade of immersion and level of pleasure a computer game ever had.

    Oh, by the way, about the lack of mission design: You should play this game online, as this just takes this incredible virtual city as base to generate an amazing experience. Including helicopter shoot-outs ;-)

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