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Motion
05-25-2007, 10:55 AM
UK, May 24, 2007 - It's not everyday you're offered a whistle-stop tour of GTA IV so when Rockstar called up and invited IGN along for our first glimpse of Liberty City, we grabbed our cameras and headed for the nearest open-top bus. Silly idea really, because the tube would've been much faster and we wouldn't have got soaked to the skin. Anyway, having arrived at Rockstar (and hung our sodden jeans on the radiator to dry), we sat down in a darkened demo room and prepared to take in the sights of Liberty City.

From the moment the giant 60-inch plasma blinked into life we were impressed. There stood Niko Bellic, the bearded Eastern European, rough-around-the-edge chap who's the focus of Grand Theft Auto IV (http://xbox360.ign.com/objects/827/827005.html). He's standing idly in his cousin Roman's taxi depot, a tiny room with paint peeling from the walls and paperwork littered on the floor. Outside, the morning sun rises through the buildings across the street, pouring light through the grubby windows and casting shadows on the wall and floor. As we take in the view Niko fumbles through his pockets and idly kicks his boot on the ground, while in the background a radio spits tinny music which fades from one speaker to the other as the camera pans around the room.

It's hardly the most glamorous of starts for what is arguably the most anticipated game of the year but it provides a glimpse into the grittier, dirtier world that Rockstar is hoping to create in GTA IV. It's more realistic, almost organic, and new approach is immediately apparent in Niko himself. Up close he's a lot more world-worn than GTA characters of the past, his face scarred and wrinkled, giving him the look of someone who means business. But while this new level of detail makes the most of the high-definition generation, there are some knock-on effects, like changing the physical attributes of your character a la CJ from San Andreas. "If you think about San Andreas, the character's face had shape but not much texture", explains our helpful Rockstar rep. "There wasn't much scarring or wrinkles or anything like that, so it was much easier to fluff it up a bit to make it look like a fatter person or suck it in so they appear thinner. Doing something where there's this level of texture - with the level of graphics and the detail on the character's face - you'd literally have to map how the face would look like at every permutation." It looks like Niko can scoff as many burgers as he wants then without piling on the pounds, and if all the character models look as good as our East European friend then we're happy.

Out on the street, Niko ambles along the pavement while bystanders chat and cars cruise past, honking their horns at other vehicles and generally going about their everyday business. It's worth noting at this point that the code we saw was extremely early and therefore our tour of Liberty City stuck to a rigid path. We only got to look around a tiny area of Broker (although Rockstar added "When you take into account we've got four of the five boroughs, plus we've got Aldernay, which is our version of part of New Jersey, it's absolutely huge") and there wasn't the opportunity to run off and explore; indeed, for much of the demonstration Niko shuffled along so we had a better opportunity to "take it all in", but more likely because the RAGE engine still has another six months of tweaking before it'll be properly ready to shift something the size of Liberty City around quickly and smoothly.

Back to the city, Niko pauses for a moment so we can see how he casts dynamic shadows as he walks along. Shadows get longer later in the day when the sun begins to set and gets lower in the sky, plus they realistically hug the surfaces of anything he walks past, such as the underground drain he passes by shortly after leaving the taxi depot.

Looking along the street, it's apparent that Rockstar has gone to great lengths to ensure the city really does define what next-generation gaming is all about. It's not the same as previous games, only bigger and sharper. In fact Liberty City is smaller than San Andreas in terms of footprint: "GTA IV is similar in scope to San Andreas but much more detailed, much more dense, not only horizontally but vertically as well," explains Hamish Brown, PR manager for Rockstar UK. "On one hand you've got horizon-to-horizon views, on the other you've got many layers of the city built upwards towards the sky." More effort has gone into making each area and each road - even individual houses - completely unique too, so when you're cruising along a street it won't be filled with identikit buildings.

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http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/791/791511p1.html

Motion
05-25-2007, 10:57 AM
May 24, 2007 - Ever since the release of Grand Theft Auto III, gamers everywhere have been chomping at the bit for the true sequel to Rockstar's genre-creating title. Sure, Vice City and San Andreas were great follow-ups, but we've been waiting years now for Grand Theft Auto IV (http://ps3.ign.com/objects/793/793799.html), and its release is finally almost upon us.

A few lucky IGN folks were able to catch a short glimpse of the game at a recent demo, and what we saw immediately sparked numerous conversations about its state, how we think it'll turn out and so forth. Let's face it, when you have a chance to see the latest Grand Theft Auto title, especially the first next-gen release, you can't help but talk about it.

So what follows are our impressions of the demo. For in-depth coverage on the details of what we saw, check out our preview right here (http://ps3.ign.com/articles/791/791533p1.html), but be sure to head right back here for our individual takes.

Jeremy Dunham, Editor-in-Chief, IGN PlayStation Team
I don't know what the hell it's called (nobody in the room did, actually), but the Russian pop song that plays when protagonist Niko Bellic drives the streets of his neighborhood hooked me immediately. Its bubbly female vocals were infectious and it turned out to be the perfect cruising song for an inspiring demo. More importantly, though, it was a great example of what struck me most about Grand Theft Auto IV -- that even in its early stages, its attention to detail and subtleties, typically missed in other genre pieces, are what make the game what it is.

Take for instance, the way that cars move as they roll over the pavement. These aren't flat surfaces; bumps and slight dips in the road force the car's shocks to adjust appropriately and the in-game physics capture these split-second modifications realistically. Pedestrians and bystanders have believable behaviors too. Whether they're sitting on stoops conversing amongst themselves, standing on a corner smoking, or just strolling around to take in the scenery, it appears that the NPCs are on their way to becoming as varied and unique as they're advertised to be (at least in terms of mannerisms, their appearances are still somewhat cookie-cutter).

Those are just some examples and, of course, there were grander and more impressive technological things going on in the demo, but for me it's the details that count. I'm anxious to see where it will go from here.

Hilary Goldstein, Editor-in-Chief, IGN Xbox Team
This is not your daddy's Grand Theft Auto. Many of the changes that we've seen so far in GTA IV are subtle, but as a whole make for a "true sequel" to GTA III. The most crucial choice Rockstar made was in shooting for a far higher level of realism. The 3D GTAs of the past have all been connected to past eras in American culture. And as such, there was plenty of room for parody. There was a separation, a clear definition that this was a false world. The new Liberty City looks almost identical to New York. The detail is absolutely mind-blowing. The game is gorgeous, with a half-a-year left in development. But that attention to detail and the realism brought to GTA IV is a departure from the previous art style of the series. That's a risk. One I'm glad Rockstar is taking.

So how next-gen is the next-gen GTA? The draw distance is solid -- you can see detail on a faraway bridge, where in past GTAs you'd see the fog of war -- and the physics are greatly improved. It's the little details that proved impressive in the 15-minute demo Rockstar offered -- The unevenness of roads, the perfect recreation of a New York brownstone, the Doppler Effect from a speeding car.

Rockstar wouldn't show us any acts of violence. There were no bloody beatings, no explosions, and no shots fired. The more energetic aspects of GTA IV will have to wait for another day. But so far, the first next-gen Grand Theft Auto looks promising.

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http://ps3.ign.com/articles/791/791568p1.html

Mephistopheles
05-25-2007, 04:48 PM
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modman4real
05-25-2007, 04:57 PM
Good out New York City. SON

Samphin
05-25-2007, 05:12 PM
But will there be Dildos?

Dildos, dildos dildos. When in doubt, add more dildos of various length, size and color. I want to be able to whack everyone with a dildo.

In fact, I suggest that the new title be GTA: IV Dildo Country.

Phinz420
05-25-2007, 05:36 PM
But will there be Dildos?

Dildos, dildos dildos. When in doubt, add more dildos of various length, size and color. I want to be able to whack everyone with a dildo.

In fact, I suggest that the new title be GTA: IV Dildo Country.


Dildos & S&M black leather outfits, dont forget about the last part.


That mission sure was weird. :lol:

Tpaddle
05-25-2007, 05:41 PM
game looks sick

HysterikiLL
05-25-2007, 07:22 PM
game looks sweet but do we have to play as russians?

Dolfan32323
05-25-2007, 07:50 PM
Can't wait to beat some ppl down in the game :D

Phinz420
05-25-2007, 08:19 PM
game looks sweet but do we have to play as russians?

The main character is "Eastern European", that doesn't make him a Russian automatically(unless its been said elsewhere that he IS Russian).