What does the American dream mean today? For Niko Bellic fresh off the boat from Europe, it is the hope he can escape from his past. For his cousin, Roman, it is the vision that together they can find fortune in Liberty City, gateway to the land of opportunity. As they slip into debt and get dragged into a criminal underworld by a series of shysters, thieves and sociopaths, they discover that the reality is very different from the dream in a city that worships money and status, and is heaven for those who have them and a living nightmare for those who don't.
The gameplay has been improved: improved drive shooting, auto save, cops dont only come after you and ignore criminals.
And like Claude, Tommy Vercetti and CJ, Niko Bellic is a likable character. But the story isnt as good.
Two endings, unfortunately they are two bad endings.
The other 3 games got frustrating at times but at least in the end you were rewarded for your hard work.
Also the game FORCES you into relationships with two women, something i didnt like.
But a fun game.
Immensely enjoying yet hating the "realistic" physics - they're awesome for sandbox fun, but terrible for missions. Especially when considering that GTA devs still don't seem to understand what "mission checkpoints" are exactly for. (Except the final mission that has an actual checkpoint, a single smallish one.)
So loads of minor flaws such as
- taxis can't be called/phoned (yet cops can, wtf?) except (after final mission spoilers) the Roman cab service - that isn't available after one ending
- no mission checkpoints
- no armour restored when replaying or if there's a mission checkpoint
- "realistic" physics are terrible for missions
- no base jumping / parachuting
- as many players noted, late in the game cash is near to useless
- no real helicopter tutorial/training before learning piloting the heli the hard way (except for the Brucie one that can be... accidentally skipped)
- yeah it's grand Theft auto yet "ordering" cars should be possible, without being forced to cheats to just get a specific one pronto
+++++ everything else is simply awesome, including "realistic" physics and realistic gameplay (as long as you are out of important missions lol)
PS A few of these above were corrected in the Episodes From Liberty City which features a few improvements and activities (ie real action such as base jumping).
PPS And yeah there's not much fun after the game is completed - except watching for Unidentified Flying Bikers (UFBs) mysteriously appearing in the sky.
My second favorite GTA game has plenty of upsides. The graphics are well made and usually don't saturate the normal functioning of the game. Ambience is also a nice aspect, because both, background and characters, resemble the multiculturalism of New York. Gameplay, as every GTA game, is quite varied, although missions are the most fun in my opinion. The protagonist is not very customizable (as in GTA San Andreas, for example), but the amount and variety of clothes and accesories are adequate. The story is the aspect I most emphasize, because is very intriguing the most of the time, and has the particularity that changes depending of your choices. That is a good reminder that our actions have certain consequences, specially reaching the end of the game. At times can be slow, because some missions feel like if they were filling. But usually reflect the tension between the wish of the american dream and the crime life that lead to more troubles than benefits.
Stand out also features like the cellphone, that registers all of your contacts known through the game, the secondary missions that some of them give you to earn extra money and the random characters dispersed all over the city for you can work. I liked also the variety of cars, and although I have my favorites, all of them look nice (I think because of the graphics). Characters and their stories, as well as the connections between them, is one of the aspects I was most interested.
Overall, GTA IV is a decent game that worth playing. The reasons why I give this an 8 instead of a 10 are rather personal, because, compared to previous games like GTA San Andreas, I think is not as fun as it is.
crappy console port with hundreds of bugs. Not even my mouse works. i tried 3 different mice. they are treated as thumbsticks. well done, Rockstar! lots of patches, none of them fixed any of my problems. I was really ****** (and still am). once you have beaten the game there is nothing to do in liberty city. there are no "activities" as it says on the dvd box. its a dead city.
playing this game with all these bugs and with no properly working mouse was a PAIN.
i spent 1000 hours with this stupid game (800 hours modding, 200 hours playing). i would rate this game 7/10. But since it gets really great once you install the right mods i rate it 8/10.