I was a huge fan of the GTA series (before I joined the notorious rat race), as the game allows you to throw off your frustration without causing any real-life trouble. The very first GTA game I ever played was Vice City, which featured the temperamental gangster and criminal mastermind Thomas “Tommy” Vercetti. The controversial gaming series is one of the most popular franchises for gamers due to the nature of the game.
The basic storyline follows the rise of the protagonist in the criminal world and how he works his way to the top. However, the storyline depends on the time period the game is set in and changes from game to game. The games are split into three distinct parallel universes (2D, 3D, and HD) and are set in fictional caricatures of well-known United States cities like Liberty City – based on New York City, San Andreas – based on San Francisco, and Vice City – based on Miami.
The DMA Design Limited released the first game in the cosmos in 1997 and named it – Grand Theft Auto. The game was a huge success, but right after its release, the company was acquired by Gremlin Interactive. After a couple of acquisitions, the company was renamed Rockstar North and became part of the Rockstar Games in 2001. Every game of the GTA series tasted success, but Grand Theft Auto V broke all the records and became the second-best-selling game of all time.
The first fictional universe ever introduced by the developing company DMA was 2D-Universe, which features the original Grand Theft Auto, its expansions and its sequel in a 2-dimensional world with a Top-Down Perspective. The 3D-Universe introduced a third-person view of a 3D world, where we can explore the GTA world in a better way. The 3D-Universe of the GTA consists of Grand Theft Auto III and its sequels.
Along with these games, the 3D-Universe also features two non-GTA games, Manhunt and Bully. The last and the latest universe in the GTA series is HD-Universe, which includes six games, an expansion pack for GTA IV, GTA V, and GTA Online. The Liberty City in the HD-Universe appears more detail oriented and extensive than the previous universes. All the universes are separate entities, yet, some characters and their backstories have been cited across universes.
2D Universe – 4 Games
Grand Theft Auto
Grand Theft Auto: London 1969
Grand Theft Auto: London 1961
Grand Theft Auto 2
3D Universe – 6 Games
Grand Theft Auto III
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
Grand Theft Auto Advance
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
HD Universe – 7 Games
Grand Theft Auto IV
Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City
The Lost and Damned
The Ballad of Gay Tony
Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto Online
Since the series ‘ first embodiment, GTA and controversies have been anchored in the same package. The action-adventure game is known for its adult nature and violent themes. The first-ever game of the cosmos was banned in Britain, Germany, Brazil and France due to its core. With the arrival of 3D graphics in the GTA-3, the game became more realistic, along with violence, and the controversies hit back to haunt the developers. In GTA-3, players have out-of-the-world options to restore their health, like paying for sexual activities with prostitutes and then killing them to get some of their money back. Not to mention, GameSpy awarded it with the title “Most Offensive Game of the Year”.
The game was banned in several countries due to its portrayal of sexual content, violence against prostitutes and a wide variety of other crimes like killing policemen, military personnel and civilians. Furthermore, when GTA Vice City came into existence, it also came under criticism as it showed a gang war between Haitians and Cubans. The phrase “Kill the Haitian dickheads”, which created the trouble, was altered from the phrase of the game after Haitian-American Grassroots Coalition filed a lawsuit against Rockstar games. When GTA San Andreas was released, it also created a controversy as it featured an interactive sex minigame nicknamed Hot Coffee.
Top 3 GTA Games
Grand Theft Auto V (GTA Online)
The Grand Theft Auto series’s latest and most loved game has everything you could ask for – from a design, storytelling, and technical perspective. GTA V (online) was released in 2013, but even after a decade, it remains trendy and competes with other newly released identical games. Set in a fictional Los Angeles called Los Santos, the game offers three playable protagonists – Trevor Philips, Michael De Santa and Franklin Clinton, each with a different perspective and distinct background.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
When Rockstar Games released GTA San Andreas on PS2 and Xbox, it was a breathtaking moment for every single gamer. The city was based on Los Angeles and other areas, while the story follows the journey of a former gangster Carl “CJ” Johnson, who returns home and pulls back to his infamous gang following his mother’s murder. The game was one of the most stylish and enjoyable games ever released, thanks to the well-created characters, dialogues, and sound design.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
Sometimes, I think, maybe, I repeat, maybe, the guys who have developed the GTA franchise over the years have a significant influence of Tony Montana on them. Hope, you have seen Al Pacino’s cult classic movie Scarface; if not, go on and have a shot of it first and then play GTA Vice City. The game was released in 2002 and takes you back in time to 1986. The lead character of Vice City, Tommy Vercetti, looks like a 3D characterization of Tony Montana.
Top 5 GTA Characters
- Carl “CJ” Johnson
- Trevor Philips
- Tommy Vercetti
- Niko Bellic
- Michael De Santa