Grand Theft Auto V Review: A Triple Dose of Satirical Fun

A Crazy and Unapologetic Ride

Let me state right off the bat that I'm primarily a PC gamer. You might not know it if you set foot in my living room, where you'll find an Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii all jockeying for attention in my home theater rack, but outside of sports titles and the occasional party-type game played through the Kinect, I play games on a PC. I bring this up because Grand Theft Auto V isn't yet available for the PC, marking one of the title's few shortcomings in what's otherwise an engaging, open world with a connected storyline that's masterfully woven through the perspective of three playable characters, each with different skill sets and personalities. It's also relevant to understand my gaming background because it has a direct influence on my analysis of the controls. Savvy? Let's get to it.

You're undoubtedly familiar with the GTA franchise, if not from having hands-on experience with previous titles, then by the frequent media outcries about in-game violence. Developer Rockstar Games is often the recipient of criticism and moral outrage whenever a politician or media figure covers a real-world tragedy and tries to connect the event to violent video games. The most current GTA title at any given point in time is always an easy target, and GTA V is no exception.

If you're reading this, then chances are you're okay with that (and if not, I suggest reading what Todd Martens had to say in his short review for the Los Angeles Times), so I'm not going to spend much time focusing on the moral angle of the grossly inappropriate tasks presented in GTA V and what that says about our society. Perhaps we're all a little twisted on the inside, as evidenced by GTA V raking in over $1 billion during its first three days. I'll leave that for the licensed psychologists for figure out.

In any event, GTA V affords plenty of opportunity to engage in tasks that you wouldn't dare attempt to play out in real life. Like previous titles in the series. stealing cars is a basic skill, and also a necessary one in order to navigate the vast landscape in a timely fashion. What isn't necessary is running over pedestrians on sidewalks or crushing motorcyclists that get in your way, though until you get a feel for the unique handling of different types of vehicles, this type of illegal carnage is virtually unavoidable.

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