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JULNew Online Previews
Grand Theft Auto IV - General News | @ 11:07 AM MDT | By Slim Trashman
New previews have been released on big gaming web sites today, feeding our anxiety with new screenshots, artwork, and information on the to be game of the year.
Computer And Video Games Preview | 1Up Preview | GamePro Preview | Team Xbox Preview | Total Video Games Preview | Yahoo! Games Preview | SPOnG Preview
All of the summarized information, quotes, and other details comes from the Kikizo Preview. We appreciate their hard work at bringing us the most in depth of previews, so you should really read the full preview to do it justice.
• Like the previous preview (circulated on May 25th), this one was also based on Xbox 360 version of the game.
• Though this demo was 5 weeks old from today's date, there was significant improvement in frame rate.
• Two missions were demonstrated in the preview. A corrupt cop named Frank McReary was the provider of these missions, which involved pulling off hits on two different targets - Goldberg, a Lawyer and an un-named Blackmailer.
• Three different Radio commercials were heard throughout the demonstration. Scroll below for the Radio Commercial scripts.
• The demo was initialized as (quoted from the reporters) "We start with Niko at Star Junction, GTA IV's version of Times Square at 5AM early in the October morning, and it's still dark, yet full of all the real character of dazzling neon Times Square."
• There's a theater show on called T.S. Pirate at the Thespian Theater, as well as a camera store called Liberty Cameras.
• Pedestrians seem more alive than ever before (smoking, reading, eating, dialing phones, etc).
• You can whistle for a cab to get to places quicker and may either enjoy the ride to your destination or perform a trip skip with the push of a button.
• Niko is short for "Nikolai".
• Goldberg's first name is Tom.
• Each street has it's own name and the name is popped at bottom-right as it is entered.
• Little Jacob - a Jamaican gun dealer from Dukes, Liberty City's interpretation of Queens. He is in the neighborhood of Rotterdam.
• Later in the demo, Niko sets off for Rotterdam on a breezy motorbike ride, and stopped next to a pizza store that sells pizzas at the very reasonable price of 99˘, and a large cocktail bar lit up in fluorescent pink called Bahama Mamas.
• Unable to simply just walk into Ammunation and buy a weapon, Niko has to search around in alleyways, backstreets, basements, etc to obtain them.
• Weapons are not as easy to acquire.
• Little Jacob sells the arms (9MM, SMG, Micro SMG) out of the trunk of his car for $100 a piece.
• You can also buy ammunition seperately.
• The cinematic camera mode is still in, along with multiple others; the default is placed slightly to the left of the driver side.
• The TW@ Café is located in Algonquin, north of Middle Park (Central Park)
• It costs $1.00 to get online at the cafe and is "Totally Wireless".
• The game has its "own" internet which is to have lots of fun things to do and explore on it.
• Niko has his own account that is accessible from any computer in the city.
• Inside the cafe, all terminals are neatly laid out and it is basically the same as a standard looking Cyber cafe.
• Pressing LB will make Niko sit down on the terminal, once sat at the terminal, the screen is displayed, as you would see it on your monitor.
• You can control the (mouser) pointer with the analogue stick of the Xbox 360 controller.
• R* asked the reporters not to write about some of the web addresses that appeared while browsing GTA's quirky version of the web, "because it's still stuff that's being worked on at the moment"; interestingly they checked out some of the domain names they noted down on WHOIS and none are registered by Take 2 yet. [Hint]
• You may be able to use credit cards as payment option in the game.
• Niko submitted a fake CV to the Goldberg Ligner & Shyster website, where he claims, i) his objective is to (quoted) "rise to the top of my profession in Liberty City", ii) experienced in criminal law with cases such as manslaughter under his belt, iii) deals with emerging markets in the West Indies, iv) has been associate attorney at Mediterranean Shipping Enterprise, v) has been an intern at a police force, vi) Got an MA in International Relations at 'Walford University', UK and a first class degree to boot. vii) skilled in people management, coping with cultural differences, athletic ability, shooting, boxing, running, and swimming "to a professional level", viii) interested in world affairs, importing and exporting goods, and free market competition.
• There's perhaps more truth to some of these claims that others, as we're sure to find out during the full game.
• The address of Goldberg, Ligner & Shyster Lawyer firm is 44 Emerty Street, The Exchange, Algonquin, according to their website. They also had a phone number listed (area code 669).
• Once the appointment is set (after you get the call from Karen, Private secretary of Goldberg), it is automatically dropped into the organizer of Niko's phone.
• Niko doesn't have to accept phone calls if he doesn't want to, but if someone is intent on reaching him, they'll become increasingly annoyed. By the way, the name of the cell network is Whiz.
• Niko meets McReary at Castle Gardens, GTA IV's version of the South Street Seaport.
• Reporters saw McReary as wearing a black suit and tie, and sports a moustache and strong side parting in his slicked blonde hair.
• After the meeting with McReary, Niko jacked into an unlocked Black Comet.
• The engine sound was as impressive as we hear in Forza or PGR.
• The default camera angle is at the more central position leaning towards the drivers' side. When driving, the field of view and sense of direction the reporters experienced was superior to previous GTAs.
• Holding down A (X on PlayStation) allows Niko to run faster, though the control schemes are yet to be finalized.
• Every car is integrated with GPS system and the recommended route shows up in yellow on the radar at the bottom left.
• On the way to meet the blackmailer, the reporters saw trashcans with individually modelled items of different trash in them, newspaper dispensers, American flags hanging from many buildings, a Cola van with the slogan 'Deliciously Infectious', a hot dog stand, Burger Shot, a Chemist and a 'Vinewood' branded video hire store.
• As said earlier, each street has its own name and so far, reported street names are, Chinatown, Presidents City, Lancet, Hatton Gardens, Middle Park East and Ruby Street.
• As soon Niko meets the blackmailer, he pulls out his gun, triggering an over the shoulder aiming view, and caps him nine times to make sure he's dead. Then, Niko collects back the memory stick.
• As soon all the actions take place, police sirens were heard, and Niko's wanted level immediately got on two-star. Pedestrians start running all over the place in panic, and they're all running in different ways and directions.
• Earned wanted level triggers as a blue and red search radius, appeared on the radar at the bottom left of the HUD. Police dispatch will notify officers in their area of the details - who they're looking for, description, last known location, and direction they're heading.
• Escaping the radius will lose the wanted stars.
• The Wanted Level system is realistically based on the line of sight, as well. If an officer sees you changing cars or spots on the road after your description has been given out, then the search radius is refocused to your last known location.
• The more wanted stars are earned, the more expansion happens with the search radius.
• Cops' positions can be seen on the radar, but new ones can appear as their backup comes to help out.
• As the Niko exits the search radius, the stars will keep flashing so he has to be careful until the stars are gone.
• Once the stars disappear, Niko heads to Cod Row, Denver Avenue, Exeter Avenue and stops at Northwood / East Holland, then hands over the memory stick to McReary.
• Before heading for the interview, organized earlier in the day, with Goldberg, a T-shirt icon appears on the radar to mark Niko's first destination and Niko heads towards Silicon Street, through Quartz Street, and Middle Park East. Now, Niko reaches at Perseus - a quality menswear shop with prices to match its flashy décor.
• At the Perseus store, Niko picks up a Chocolate suit for $1000 and some nice shoes for $200.
• Inside the lawyer firm, while Niko walks with Karen towards meeting room, Karen advises him about Goldberg, "He's just in here. Don't be nervous, he doesn't bite".
• As soon Niko pulls out the gun, Goldberg reacts, "Woah, woah, hold on second there friend! We're lawyers, we don't need guns! Strong move though, I gotta say, I like that style... I'm all about the Second Amendment... guns don't kill people, videogames do!"
• Then, Niko demands to know where the McReary files are, then puts a bullet in Goldberg before he smashes and falls through the window of his office down to the street below - that's him taken care of.
• 10 seconds later, the wanted level reaches upto 3 Stars (out of Maximum of 6 Wanted Stars) and police sirens are heard. Now, Niko is bound to make the escape from the building.
• Niko can basically take cover behind anything (in this office environment, a cleaner's maintenance trolley does the job), and Cops are seen to take cover, as well.
• In addition to the involving cover system, there's also the ability for Niko to blind fire.
• The gunfight and chaotic rhythm of hiding, taking cover, shooting and reloading is classic gameplay that is great fun to see action, particularly with the ragdoll deaths of everybody in sight - against walls, down stairwells.
• The cops keep coming into the building to try and bust Niko. Niko makes an exit using various emergency stairs.
• The demo was played twice. On the second play, after Niko takes out Goldberg, instead of pursuing the missions from the first play, Niko instead opts to get his hands dirty in a massive outside shootout, in an area full of opportunities for cover. Cops, pedestrians, traffic and choppers all get in on the action, and Niko even blows up a gas station for the hell of it with some carefully aimed shots at the refill terminal when he switches the weapon to the Micro SMG. Awesome, as it explodes out in different directions out of the pump and the screen shakes with a bassy boom. Eventually, Niko dies in the action, after a while.
• As soon he dies, he falls to the ground and the camera pans high looking downwards to show that you've botched the job up.
• R* confirmed that the whole demo only showed off one third of Algonquin. It's about 1/16 of the full game map.
• The next preview will include PS3 impressions, online features and multiplayer modes.
Caller: "This is Karen from Goldberg, we'd like to arrange an interview at your earliest convenience. Come into our offices at noon tomorrow, is that alright?"
Niko: "I can free that period up in my schedule."
Karen: "Super, your interview will be with Mr Goldberg. Identify yourself to security and they will show you up. Have a nice day."
McReary: "Were you followed?"
Niko: "Hey, strange seeing you here, Officer McReary."
McReary: "I told you to come here, you fucking maggot!"
Niko: "You did? Why?"
McReary: "I know about you."
Niko: "Know what?"
McReary: "I know enough, boy."
Niko: "Oh, what do you know, boy?"
[Rockstar mutes the TV because of a plot spoiler in the dialogue]
Niko: "I don't know what you're talking about, chief."
McReary: "Do you think this is a town that can keep a secret?"
Niko: "I really don't know what you're talking about."
McReary: "Yeah you do. You know that a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do. The people ain't perfect, their life is a mess..."
Niko: "Sure, everybody knows that."
McReary: "So. You look out for me, and I don't look out for you. Know what I mean?"
Niko: "I think so."
McReary: "So, there's a guy trying to blackmail me."
McReary: "I don't know. Thinks he's getting paid though. The guy's smart. He arranged to do the exchange by the Humboldt River off Silicon Street, said to call him from the viewpoint there."
McReary: "Listen, I did what I did. I made a mistake. That don't make me the devil. Now obviously I can't go, because then he gets a picture of me giving him money and then I'm admitting guilt. I ain't guilty of nothing, other than being a man."
Niko: "To be honest... I don't really care one way or another..."
McReary: "Call me when you get to the spot."
Blackmailer: "Hello? Who is this?"
Niko: "A friend. I am calling about your exchange with McReary."
Blackmailer: "Yeah. He better have my paper. I ain't fucking around."
Niko: "I'm sure he's got your money. Have you got the stuff that he wants?"
Blackmailer: "Yeah I got it. We going to make this shit happen? I don't mess about you know. Push me and this shit is all over Weasel News. I got them on speed dial."
Blackmailer: "Yeah. And there's a lawyer called Tom Goldberg who's real interested. He's hungry for McReary's blood and shit. Yeah."
Niko: "Good thing Francis is paying them."
Blackmailer: "Call me when this exchange is going down. I don't like all the talking, yeah?"
Niko: "Yeah, he's dead."
McReary: "Great, I can get rid of these now. I feel like a new man. Not many people get a second chance like this. Thank you."
Niko: "Your sins are absolved, I guess."
Karen: "Mr Bellic, welcome. I will just see if Mr Goldberg is available... Mr Goldberg, Mr Bellic has arrived for his interview."
Goldberg: "Alright great, tell him to come to my office."
Karen: "Uh-huh, I'll bring him through. Would you please follow me, Mr Bellic."
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