A look at Grand Theft Auto’s Rise to gaming juggernaut on PS2
While the first two Grand Theft Auto games were incredibly popular, it is for its trilogy of games (not counting PSP ports) on the Playstation 2 that are perhaps most fondly remembered. In fact Grand Theft Auto was so fondly remembered that it was very recently re-released on the iPad and iPhone.
Grand Theft Auto 3 hit the Playstation, PC and a little later Xbox firstly in 2001. It absolutely blew critics and gamers away. Gone was the top down perspective of the first two games, instead we had a amazing 3D environment that was like a real life city. It does have many of the same core aspects of what made people fall in love with the series in the first place, but the level of free roaming in this game was something we had never seen before. Like the there games you could literally do what ever you wanted. But the fantastic 3D game engine for both walking and driving made it a experience like we had never had before in a video game.
It only took about a year for a new game to hit stores and that was Grand Theft Auto Vice City. Many gamers remember just how cool it was the first time they stepped into a vehicle in Vice City to be greeted by Michael Jackson’s Billy Jean playing on the radio. Vice City was set in the 1980’s it was like you were playing the role of Scarface. Everything about the game just oozed of the 1980’s and it made it for a very different experience from Grand Theft Auto 3. Many aspect of the game while not given complete over hails had just been tightened and made to feel a little better. Grand Theft Auto Vice City most definitely has a special place in many gamers hearts.
It would take Rockstar two years to give us what many fans consider the pinnacle of the Grand Theft Auto San Andreas. Gone was the setting of the 1980’s of Vice City, instead we were set in the “hood” of the early 1990’s in a place very similar to Los Angeles. One of the big selling points of San Andreas was that it had some RPG elements and Rockstar really pushed the customisation aspect of this game. While you could argue that in game play terms it is very similar to the other two games, even the hardest critic would have to admit that San Andreas does the Grand Theft Auto games better than any other ones in the entire series. Its so popular that many gamers have begged and event set up petitions on-line for there to be a new Grand Theft Auto game set in San Andreas.