| I have completed another hour of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and have advanced a little bit more through the game. I am still by no means far but have run from rival gang gunfire, gotten a haircut, eaten pizza, and put my colors over the rivals' with spraypaint. When I was ordered to follow my brother on a bike to get away from enemy gunfire I realized the extent of the world your playing in, or San Andreas. It was pretty amazing when I paused the game to find taht I had only discovered about a tenth of what I could find. This makes the design of the game remarkable as it provides some incentive to work through the game and move to the neighboring cities.|
The next thing I did in the game was get a haircut. This was revealing of the superior design on two different levels. First, it is evident that the designers were mindful of the background culture in this game. You walk into the barbershop and are required to choose from a variety of haircuts, something that has been a staple in many cultures for a long time. The incorporation of culture also makes the game more real to many people. And reality makes any game more entertaining for nearly any player. The other thing that makes the game more real is the eating aspect. One of the missions early on is to get some pizza from a local restaurant. And then it reveals that you are required to feed your character as you progress through the game. If you eat too little, you have no energy, and if you eat too much, you get fat, weak, and slow. This makes the game more difficult, but more realistic, and therefore engaging.
The last task, or mission, that I was required to complete was to cover up the rival gang's graffiti with my own gang's colors. This was yet another way to break the law and gain street rep, which is a plus for the game and kudos to the game designers. I have now realized that the idea of the game is to create as many possible ways to break the law, oust the rival gang, or get more respect and after graffitiing I realized that this game is chalk full of oppurtunities do compelete these types of tasks. In my opinion, the design is great, but the idea is an infidelity.
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| So I just finished playing an hour of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas for Playstation 2 and realized what all the buzz was about a few years back. It is an incredibly unique game in that it represents the first RPG, or the first influential one, that takes place on the streets. What makes it so influential is the violence, profanity, and graphic content. It is completely clear to me why a young child would play this game and be instantly inspired to go rob the local liquor store. And this why it remains to be one of the most contraversial games of all time.|
As for my experience of play, it was pretty gripping. The first thing you see is a cut scene introducing your character, who appears to be "innocent" as he is abused by a couple of racist cops (hence a child's distaste for cops at a very very young age). This immediately sets the tone for the storyline, which is the priority of this RPG. It is clear from the very beginning of this game that your character starts off at the bottom of the food chain and the idea is to work your way up the ladder until you have a considerable amount of pull in the crime world. Then you are set on your own, or the free aspect of the game, which many people choose to just wander and kill and rob civilians. The first mission is to steal a bike and ride to your mom's house. It is made clear that your mom was killed by an undisclosed thug and your job is to take revenge on whoever is at fault. This is the second objective in the game and the ultimate goal.
However, what really struck me in the wrong way was the language in the game. The next cut scene was an introduction to your brother and his friend and the language that they throw into even that one cut scene is outrageous. Children are most easily influnced by profanity and a player of this game doesn't need to get very far into the game to be exposed to some pretty intense languauge. I normally would say this detracts from the game's design, but I suppose that is the point of these games.
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