dennis;;callmebackdraft;;big;;red;;timemachine;;1997;;grand;;theft;;auto;;gta;;driving;;shoot;;crime;;rockstar;;DMA Dennis "CallMeBackdraft" Aspers

GRAND THEFT AUTO

By Dennis "CallMeBackdraft" Aspers on May 3, 2019

Euhm, Sadhonker? Sadhonker... Mr. Big? YO, RED!!!!! Where the hell is that guy, whenever you need him which, in all fairness, isn't all that often, he is always gone with the wind and, worst of all, he frankly doesn't give a damn... But, while we are on the subject of missing people; this theme park we reside in seems to be a lot emptier then when we first arrived... something is most definitely amiss here and I intend to get to the bottom of this right now.

* AI VOICE: Work diversion tactics detected, enabling countermeasures *

Wait... what?! who was that? Sadhonker, you know April fools was like over a month ago, right? Sadhonker? Come on, I know it is you I hear over the parks intercom, with your silly little robotic voice.

* AI VOICE": Work diversion tactics still in play, Countermeasures dispatched *

Eeeuuhm, why is Wreck it Ralph running at me at breakneck speed? Hakuna your Tata's Ralph! RALPH... RAAAALPH! Oh crap... RUUUUUUNNNNNNNNN!!! Ah, there is a door here, lets run inside and hide. Not even Ralph will be able to get trough! a solid steel door.

* slams door shut behind him *
* Slightly muffled AI VOICE: Countermeasures successful, subject has arrived in interChronomatic transportational device... *


What was that? InterChrono...something ? Oh well, there is a seat there, and I could use a rest... Hold on, I know this seat; this is the Timemachine... Ow snap! Is it that time again? Wait, how long have you guys been here? Why in the world would you sneak up on me like that? I knew it was a bad idea to leave our last Big Red HQ behind. I mean, come on; the defense system here is sub-par if not non-existent.

Well, now that you are here, we might as well take a stroll down memory lane and re-visit another game of old. This week I was "planning" on visiting Grand Theft Auto. No, not the fancy shmancy 3D version we have been receiving the past couple of years. I mean the original game from 1997. So, let's set our dials and give this baby another whirl.

Developed by DMA Design, a name that no longer exists, because it got changed to the more well known Rockstar North, Grand Theft Auto was a top-down beat em up, shooter, driving and crime sim, all rolled into one. It was actually one of the first games where you, as the protagonist, were actually actively involved in crime. Being the new guy or girl in town, you had to perform certain tasks for the city's crime syndicate, gathering points as you went along.


While the game didn't necessarily have a story as such, but was more centered around going around the city and committing as many crimes as possible, the game did have missions that could be started by answering a phone call or stepping in a suspiciously handy parked car. Finishing missions and/or generally being involved in a life of crime would garner you points. If you earned enough points a new chapter would be unlocked and you would be able to travel to the next city.

The game had a total of three cities, Liberty City being the first of them. This city was loosely based on New York city. The second city, San Andreas, was actually a kind of mix between San Francisco and Los Angeles and the final island, Vice City, was mainly based on Miami. As one would suspect, with every new city, it became increasingly more difficult to rack up crime points without having the police hot on your tail.

Because of the top-down perspective, some people (I'm sorry ladies, but it were mostly women at the time) had some trouble with controlling their car. It's all fine and dandy while driving your car from the bottom towards the top of the screen, but coming down was a whole different story, because now the steering was working the other way around. When coming down, steering right meant to the right of the actual car, seen from behind, as opposed to the right side of the screen. It was basically the same problem people had while playing Micro Machines.


During your adventures in crime, you could acquire a total of 4 weapons namely a pistol, a machinegun, a flamethrower or a rocket launcher. Using these or performing any other actions considered illegal, like murdering, stealing or crashing cars would give you a wanted level, represented by an number of stars, ranging from 0 to 5. The amount of stars in your screen showed the amount of law enforcement used to take you down. Now, at the start, this law enforcement consisted of mainly beat cops that tried to stop and you. If your rating was higher, they started shooting at you. If, however, you really got into the swing of things, as far as murder, destruction and other criminal activities were concerned, they would send a fully fledged Army in after you. And let me tell you, these guys were no pushovers; they came in tanks and even wielded rocket launchers as a sidearm.

Talking about tanks and rocket launchers, I really need to get back to our HQ and take care of that rampant AI that sent Wreck it Ralph after me. Actions like that cannot go unanswered. This blatant disrespect for my person will have dire consequences, believe me! For now, will I say Ta Ta and leave you to your own devices. In two weeks, Sadhonker will take you out once again for a nice Friday's drive along the countryside of game. If he ever resurfaces, that is...


GRAND THEFT AUTO
DMA Design (now known as Rockstar North)
1997