Hands-On: 'Grand Theft Auto IV' PC


Posted August 20, 2008 - By Stephen Johnson

X-Play's Abbie Heppe got her lucky hands on Grand Theft Auto IV for the PC, and here's what she thought...

Rockstar shows their love for the PC again with a massively up-res’ed version of Grand Theft Auto 4 due out in November, and the improvements and extra features might be enough to inspire even diehard console gamers to jack a computer and give Liberty City a visit on the PC.

The most noticeable difference between the PC version of the game and the console versions are the graphics. GTA IV PC outputs at 2560x1600 with improved textures and draw distances, meaning that even on a 106” television the graphics are downright breathtaking. In the “3 Leaf Clover” mission shown behind closed doors at the Leipzig Games Convention, the improvements are most noticeable when speeding over the bridges into the towering downtown environments. While the port is a work in progress, the best basis for graphic comparison is this: The trees lining the city streets haven’t been redone for PC yet, and basically look like square paper collages compared to the rest of the game, again on a television larger than the walls of many New York, I mean, Liberty City, apartments.

The most impressive additional features aren’t being shown off yet. The PC version will include a replay and montage editor that continuously records the previous 30 seconds of gameplay allowing players, with a simple click of a button, to review their best smash-ups and kill sprees in various camera angles with the ability to add filters and music before uploading them online. Hopefully this doesn’t go the way of the Spore creature creator considering the frequency of strip club visitation.

I asked about the rest of the upgrades, but it seems Rockstar is being hush-hush for now. At least they promise expanded multi-player which will allow gamers to search for specific types of matches: 8 players, rocket launchers only in the conservatory…with the lead pipe? Sure.

Being purely presumptuous I wouldn’t be surprised if they expanded the amount of players in a match as well--with environments that large it’s a logical conclusion. GTA IV PC supports not only the mouse and keyboard but the 360 controller too.

On a side note, even though I spent several weeks of my life playing the console version of this game straight through, I’d never actually realized how brutal (read "violent") the game is until I saw it on that large of a screen (and with someone playing that never misses a headshot).

At this point, you’re epically late to the party but Rockstar gives some solid incentive to buy the game for PC. You'll be able to edit your own Liberty City story this fall.

Hands-On: 'Grand Theft Auto IV' PC


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