One of the most innovative, imitated, and controversial video game series of all time returns to PS2 in this three-for-one bundle from publisher Rockstar Games. Since the runaway success of Grand Theft Auto III on PS2, the GTA games have been praised by players and vilified by politicians. All three 128-bit generation GTA games -- Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas -- are included in this box set.
Grand Theft Auto III casts players as a low-level thug in a grungy, New York-styled urban game world called Liberty City. Liberty City is made up of three districts, and in all, the game offers 72 different missions, many of which can be played in any order. As the player's character completes jobs available in one part of the city, other areas and assignments open up to him. Along with this purposeful design of an open-ended, non-linear storyline, many other features popular in earlier versions of the game return in this release as well, including a diverse variety of deadly weapons, busy streets full of self-involved pedestrians, and eight different radio station soundtracks to listen to while inside the vehicles.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City offers the same open-ended style of play as its violent, "M"-rated predecessor, but in an area twice as large as Liberty City, and with a completely different theme. Seemingly inspired by television's stylish crime drama, Miami Vice, Vice City takes place in the 1980s. Criminals wear pastel-colored suits, bikini-clad women relax on sandy beaches, and palm tree-lined streets are bustling with showy sports cars and zippy motorcycles.
Like its immediate predecessor, San Andreas strives to provide a wide, deep foundation for its free-form criminal gameplay by setting the story in a slightly exaggerated representation of a familiar (if not glorified) American subculture. As Vice City seemed inspired by Miami Vice, and the pastel-decked, "me generation" ideals of the early '80s, San Andreas is set in a time and place suggested by films like Boyz N the Hood, Menace II Society, or Colors. Players take the role of Carl "C.J." Johnson, who thought he had escaped the gangland lifestyle by moving away from his Los Santos home. When his mother is murdered, he returns to the neighborhood of his childhood, only to become embroiled with threats and danger from all sides.
Editor's Note: The version of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas included in this compilation has been rated "M" by the ESRB, and contains no working remnants of the controversial "Hot Coffee" sequence found in the title's original release.