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Old 24-06-2006, 12:59   #1
MR.COATES
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[PS2] Liberty City Stories

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Old 25-06-2006, 13:32   #2
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Yea been playing this. Feels like a bit of a downgrade from SA, you'd have thought they would have imported the SA controls and gameplay to this game rather then using the old GTA3 controls.
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Old 25-06-2006, 14:38   #3
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I'll buy it eventually. What's the soundtrack like?
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Old 25-06-2006, 17:39   #4
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Well only had a brief listen but sounds good to me. I'm sure some of the songs will grow on me over time.
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Old 23-07-2006, 11:38   #5
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I've finally got round to buying GTA: Liberty City Stories for the PS2 and I've just unlocked the third island (Shoreside Vale). I noticed a few negative points in reviews about the game's graphics, the short length of the game, simplistic/short missions and I even noticed some comments about the poor controls. I recently deleted all my GTA save games from my memory cards and started playing GTA 3 and Vice City again before buying Liberty City Stories. I think if you compare Liberty City Stories with GTA 3 (same city after all), Liberty City Stories is just as good as GTA 3 and in some important respects it is actually better. As a result I feel a bit stupid for holding off buying LCS its another good GTA game, at a bargain price at a time when there aren't many games being released.

One of the biggest issues with GTA 3 was the controls and the way the camera worked. You had to often press a button to centre the camera behind you, the controls were twitchy, the targeting wasn't the best either. It was functional and for the first GTA game in 3D/3rd person it was acceptable because GTA 3 did so many other things right that it was easy to forgive this. But many of the control improvements from Vice City and San Andreas have found their way into Liberty City Stories on the PS2 and it makes a big difference. You can rotate the camera around you to look around instead of having that first person veiw that always snapped back to the default camera after a couple of seconds. The targeting is much improved over GTA 3: there's auto targeting which displays the targets health (colour), you switch between targets with the L2 and R2 buttons and pressing L3 once while still holding the R1 button lets you manually aim at what you want, such as trying to bring down a helicopter with a shotgun.

GTA missions have become a bit more complex and interesting in Vice City and San Andreas. They were a bit simplistic in GTA 3 and some of the missions in Liberty City Stories seem like a step backwards. But again, they compare quite favourably with those of GTA 3 and I haven't found them to be too short either. There's also a decent number of them because it took over 30 story missions to unlock Staunton Island and well over 50 to reach Shoreside Vale.

A big plus point for Liberty City Stories is that the side missions are plentiful and I'm not just talking about the hidden packages, rampages, R3 taxi missions and the other vehicles from the emergency services. Yes, there's now the Trashmaster (bin lorry) R3 missions you can do as well but many of the new side missions take advantage of the motorcycles in Liberty City Stories. Even on the first island (Portland) you'll find: a series of 10 checkpoint all terrain courses to beat on the Sanchez; the scrapyard challenge (again on the Sanchez) where you have to reach a certain score by picking up checkpoints with varying points associated with them; there are a couple of motorcycle shooter missions where you are on the back of the bike while the AI driver follows the targets; there's even a noodle delivery mission.

In addition there are car salesman missions where you have to drive potential buyers around and meet their requirements from careful to reckless driving; some street races, a couple of RC missions and a side mission called Slash TV where you battle your way through waves of chainsaw wielding madmen from almost a top down viewpoint. All these side missions take place on the island of Portland and there are more on the other islands including motorcycle salesman side mission, pizza delivery etc.

Some side missions can only be initiated while wearing a certain outfit, such as the Slash TV side mission. Another example of this is the Avenging Angels side mission. Not only do you have to wear the Avenging Angel clothing you also have to find someone wearing the same outfit to begin this side mission (by pressing R3). So in short, I'm very happy with the missions and the many side-missions (apart from those really tricky RC missions).

In GTA 3 the engine could only draw about 5 cars on screen at any one time this has been greatly increased with LCS. One of my favourite (unofficial) side missions I started doing in GTA 3 was one I called Chain Reaction. What you have to do is try and start a chain reaction of exploding vehicles just be targeting the first one yourself. The game engine made it difficult to get much higher than 10 or 11 in GTA 3 and the best way was to choose an intersection to park a vehicle in front of some traffic lights and then blow it up. In Liberty City stories I tried this by parking near the traffic lights near the safe house in Staunton Island. I jumped on top of my car used manual targeting and waited for the cars to line up. To my surprise around a dozen vehicles eventually appeared which made setting a decent score much easier.

The graphics aren't really that great compared to San Andreas but this was a PSP game so I'm not complaining because it looks a lot less drab than GTA 3 did on the PS2, especially in certain parts of the city. The radio isn't that great but there are some great GTA-style commercials and the talk station is quite good.

So far I'm really enjoying Liberty City Stories and maybe that is in part because I went back and started playing GTA 3 again before playing LCS. But if you liked GTA 3 then I can highly recommend this and it is at a bargain price as well.
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Old 23-07-2006, 13:32   #6
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Thanks for that informative review JohnMac, i've been putting off buying LCS after hearing the same negative points that you just mentioned, but i also recently began playing GTA3 again and i still think it's a fine game, so aslong as LCS is similar, it can't go far wrong.

Have recently ordered it so will soon chip back with my own thoughts.
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Old 24-07-2006, 16:00   #7
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I bought it a few weeks back. Played a few hours of it and left it aside. I thought S.A. was so good its ruined the franchise for me.
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Old 24-07-2006, 16:27   #8
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I like LCS. It's still GTA3 at the end of the day so if you like GTA you'll like this.
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Old 29-07-2006, 10:51   #9
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I've just completed the story missions (70) for Liberty City Stories this morning and I really enjoyed it. I've been using a save game just for the story missions so that I can systematically work my way through the side-missions later (now I know where they are). I noticed my accuracy went from 71% before the final mission to 54% after it; if you've played the final mission you can probably appreciate why.
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Old 29-07-2006, 20:04   #10
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Got this earlier in the week, it's great! GTA3 with bucket loads of new missions, and the vehicle handling is much improved i feel.

Only things that bug me are real anal things like the way they've resorted to using standard in-game animations for alot of the cut-scenes rather than the great looking motion capture that GTA3. They still use motion capture but not alot. Also, i guess they used different voice actors for some of the returning characters, i mean whats up with Donald Love? There's only what, 3 years between this and gta3 yet he sounds like a completely different person, maria is suspect too, but like i said, real anal things so doesnt exactly matter in the end.

I'm liking the hints and nods towards the other gta games in the series that are dotted around. Everything else i think JohnMac summed up well.

About halfway Staunton island atm, looking forward to see what's changed on that island next.
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