News for May, 2008

Sunday, May 18, 2008

New Vehicles and Weapons pages

Posted by Suction Testicle Man at 17:36. Category: General
We have updated our Vehicles and Weapons pages with detailed statistical information for the various options available in the game. Finally you can compare your favourite vehicles and determine the fastest for those key missions, and pick out the most agile and effective weapon for keeping your operations as swift and clean as possible!

Monday, May 12, 2008

GTA IV Mission Guide - Chapter Two Available

Posted by adamcs at 21:07. Category: General

Chapter Two of our GTA IV mission guide/walkthrough is now available! This chapter covers 28 missions (from "Escuela of the Streets" up to "Three Leaf Clover") and now the guide contains 51 missions in total.

Link: GTA IV Mission Guide

Thursday, May 08, 2008

New Wallpapers and SE Soundtrack available for download

Posted by adamcs at 17:30. Category: General

Rockstar has updated the official GTA IV website with a new series of desktops called "Outdoor II". They have also announced that the GTA IV Special Edition soundtrack album is available digitally via Amazon MP3. Updates have also been made to the screenshot and multiplayer sections.

Link: Official Grand Theft Auto IV Website

GTA4 Mission Guide - Chapter One Launched

Posted by adamcs at 12:55. Category: General

Today we are launching Chapter One of our extensive Grand Theft Auto IV Mission Guide. The guide will feature screenshots, details and soon videos of every mission in the main story section of GTA4. The videos are ready to go up, but we're waiting to complete the new design so we can finalize dimensions and stuff. Everything should hopefully be ready by the end of the month. Check out what we have so far and see what you think.

Link: Grand Theft Auto 4 Mission Guide - Chapter One

PS3 GTA IV Update Data 1.01 Released

Posted by Justin at 04:57. Category: General

A patch has been released for PlayStation 3 users of Grand Theft Auto IV. You will be prompted to download the update the next time you load GTA IV whilst being signed into the PlayStation Network. While download and installation is required to continue playing the game; totaling 18 MB, it shouldn't keep you away for too long.

As for content, the patch addresses certain online issues related to GameSpy's servers being overloaded. Not surprising, considering the sheer number of those playing the game.

Rockstar Games has released a GTA IV patch for Playstation 3 today that prevents GameSpy’s servers from being overloaded and therefore reduces the impact on those servers that were causing the game to stutter and lock up. We continue to monitor the performance of the game both on and offline and will provide further updates as necessary. We want to assure everyone that, together with our hardware partners, we continue to strive to give our fans the best possible interactive entertainment experiences possible. This update will ensure that everyone will experience Grand Theft Auto IV the way it was intended. We apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.

Results so far appear to be mixed, if discussion on our forums is anything to go by.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

GTA IV Breaks Entertainment Launch Records

Posted by adamcs at 11:15. Category: General

From Take2's website...

New York, NY – May 7, 2008 – Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (BAWSAQ: TTWO), said today that Grand Theft Auto IV has surpassed all-time entertainment records for day one and week one sales by dollar value. Released on Tuesday, April 29th, Grand Theft Auto IV, the critically acclaimed video game, has sold through to consumers approximately 6 million units globally with an estimated retail value of more than $500 million in the first week. Grand Theft Auto IV sold approximately 3.6 million units on its opening day with a retail value of approximately $310 million globally.

"We knew Grand Theft Auto IV would break new ground in terms of the player's experience, with its compelling story line, extraordinary gameplay and action that ranges over a broad urban canvas. Now, it has broken sales and rating records as well. Grand Theft Auto IV's first week performance represents the largest launch in the history of interactive entertainment, and we believe these retail sales levels surpass any movie or music launch to date. We congratulate the entire Rockstar team on creating a must-have experience that takes the legendary Grand Theft Auto franchise to a new level," said Strauss Zelnick, Chairman of Take-Two.

"Rockstar's goal is to make each new title in the Grand Theft Auto franchise even better than those that preceded it, and Grand Theft Auto IV is a smashing success on that score. Grand Theft Auto IV makes full use of the power of next generation technology, and offers players an experience unique in the interactive entertainment medium. This game sets a new standard in the industry, with critics hailing it as both an artistic and technological masterpiece," said Ben Feder, Take-Two's Chief Executive Officer.

Link: Take2 Press Release

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Miami-Dade Transit Officials re: GTA IV ads

Posted by Andy at 14:35. Category: General

Yesterday I posted a story about Take-Two filing a lawsuit against the Chicago Transit Authority as a result of the Grand Theft Auto IV transit ads being pulled. I also went on to suggest that Miami-Dade Transit (which I mistakingly referred to as the Miami Transit Authority in my last post) -- who also pulled down all GTA IV transit ads -- might face a similar lawsuit from Take-Two.

As if on cue, shed some additional light on the GTA IV ads being pulled in Miami. From the post:

While following up on this story GP communicated with MDT Deputy Director Hugh Chen and Marketing Director Michael DeCossio. It was media relations official Manuel Palmiero, however, who ultimately supplied the information below. What follows are GP’s question, MDT’s verbatim answers and a few bits of commentary:

GP: The GTA IV ads themselves are inoffensive. Is Miami-Dade Transit making a value judgment as to the underlying product? If so, this judgment is based on…?

MDT: The Miami-Dade County Commission has adopted three resolutions in the last five years dealing with violent video games — R-1447-03, R-248-04 and R-573-06. You may look up all three at

The first resolution specifically condemned the “Grand Theft Auto: Vice City” video game for its “hate-filled messages” and for appearing “to encourage or condone violence against ethnic minorities” and called on retailers to remove the game from their shelves. The other two condemned violent video games in general and urged retailers not to make such games available to minors.

Miami-Dade Transit is a department of Miami-Dade County and as such follows the policies set by the Miami-Dade County Commission and Mayor.

The full Q&A can be found on the website, along with commentary and discussion of the story.

Related Links: - Q&A with MDT

Zombies in multiplayer GTA IV

Posted by Andy at 01:51. Category: General

Zombies in Grand Theft Auto IV? Whodathunkit? Apparently some gamers have been seeing zombified players wandering around in multiplayer with rotting flesh and a Rockstar Games speedo. Yikes. From Kotaku:

There are a few comments indicating gamers have seen zombies in online play, but nothing about transforming into one yet. Theories range from getting killed by a Rockstar employee, to killing a Rockstar employee, to getting the highest ranking.

They quote the official strategy guide (I don't have it) "If you see unclothed characters, look out! Only players who have reached the max ranking of 10 and a few other "special" people get the honor of shooting in their skivvies." But this player says he's only at Level 2. The user's name in the forums is GTA. I couldn't find a PSN ID for him.
Multiplayer Zombie Multiplayer Zombie Multiplayer Zombie
Kill a Rockstar... become a zombie?

There's a thread over at started up by the (lucky?) PS3 gamer discussing his sudden transformation into an apparent extra from some B-rated horror flick. According to his blog, he apparently gained the zombie "outfit" as a reward for killing a Rockstar employee in-game (doing so yields an achievement for Xbox 360 players, so perhaps this is a PS3 equivalent?).

If anyone else out there has suddenly found themselves sporting a slick speedo and rotting flesh, give us a shout on the forums. Ruckstar, one of our community members (and also a PS3 owner), also found himself zombified a few days ago. You can check out the "Zombie" thread on our forums as well.

Related Links: Kotaku Article, Thread, Becoming a Zombie - Blog Post

Take-Two sues Chicago Transit Authority

Posted by Andy at 01:07. Category: General

Reuters is reporting that Take-Two has just filed a lawsuit against the Chicago Transit Authority in response to the Grand Theft Auto IV transit ads being pulled in the leadup to the game's launch. From the article:

The video game's publisher Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. sued the transit authority in Manhattan federal court for violating its free speech and contractual rights, saying it pulled its posters within days of the ads first appearing on April 22.

Take Two accused the authority and its sales agent, Titan Outdoor LLC, of violating a $300,000 (150,000 pounds) ad campaign agreement that included running "Grand Theft Auto 4" poster ads on the sides of buses and transit display spaces throughout the Chicago transit system scheduled for six weeks between April and June.

The suit seeks an order for the transit authority to run the ads as well as monetary damages of at least $300,000.

I can't help but wonder whether or not the Miami Transit Authority will be slapped upside the head with a similar lawsuit. Back in late April -- only days before the release of the game -- Wacky Jacky apparently played a part in getting the GTA IV transit ads pulled in his native stomping ground of Miami. (On a related note: If Florida is America's wang, then Jackyboy must certainly be the wang of Florida. Just a thought.)

Floridas Wang

Kudos to Jordan for bringing the Reuters story to my attention.

Related Links: Reuters Article - Take-Two sues CTA

Monday, May 05, 2008

GTA IV tempts you to join the Dark Side

Posted by Andy at 22:36. Category: General

Here at GTANet, we try our best to avoid covering every bit of GTA controversy that spews forth from the media, simply because there's far too much of it, and most of the statements made are little more than a copy+paste of opinions we've all heard countless times in the past. Instead, we prefer to focus on those articles, columns, and broadcasts that we find particularly interesting.

The following story, for example, is considerably interesting:

Katherine Kersten (a columnist with the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star-Tribune) has joined the ranks of pseudo-media personalities complaining about the evils of Grand Theft Auto IV. Unlike most columnists that rage against the GTA series, however, Kersten does make a point of focusing on the thirty-some male, acknowledging that the average gamer isn't a fifteen year old reclusive hiding in the basement. But here's the twist: If you play games like Grand Theft Auto, you're a bad father, a bad person, and a bad influence.

The average 32-year-old man who plays violent video games — and spends his free hours fantasizing about murdering passersby and roughing up strippers — is likely to be someone’s husband and father. What qualities of character will his wife find when she looks to him for love, steadiness and fidelity?

And when his young son looks to Dad as a role model — well, that’s the problem, isn’t it?

The article also talks about humanity's "dark side", reminding us of ancient history (Romans and all, no pun intended), Nazi Germany, the Rwanda genocide, and so on, suggesting that GTA IV "stimulates" our "dark side".

Our own age has witnessed the horrors of genocide in Nazi Germany and Rwanda. These atrocities were not perpetrated by a handful of human monsters, but by thousands of ordinary people.

Contemporary Americans are not immune from sadistic impulses. The renegade U.S. soldiers who humiliated and maltreated prisoners at Abu Ghraib were reportedly imitating the pornified culture from which they came.

Games like GTA IV stimulate and glamorize our dark impulses. They create a taste for the psychological thrill that can come from dominating and degrading others. They encourage us to strip our fellow human beings of their dignity, and view them merely as objects of violence or sexual desire.
Darth Vader

Needless to say, I'm a bit disgusted that this columnist is attempting to draw relationships between a videogame and genocide... if it wasn't for the constant references to the "dark side" (and me immediately imagining Darth Vader cruising through Liberty City in a smashed-up Trashmaster), I'd almost be angry. (She also happens to be the first individual I've ever seen raise the Nintendo Wii as a possible point of controversy.)

If you love dipping into every little bit of controversy that surfaces in relation to GTA IV, and for more coverage of the gray area where the world of politics and the world of videogames collide, be sure to check out

Related Links: Post, Star-Tribune Article

The GTA Netcast - Post GTA IV Impressions

Posted by Andy at 00:06. Category: General

Update: Thanks to the 500+ of you for tuning in! If you missed the show, we're hoping to do another show next week.

Jordan, Zidane and myself are discussing our post-GTA IV impressions. Want to share your thoughts on GTA IV? Toss your opinions over this way to have them read on the broadcast.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

PS3 seizing up with GTA IV? - Solutions

Posted by Andy at 04:10. Category: General

You've probably seen this circulating around the internet by now, but if not, here's some light reading material for you to hit up in regards to the issue of PlayStation 3's seizing up with GTA IV.

For the uninformed: this isn't just a problem affecting a few people -- not by a long shot. PS3's all over the world have been going nutty when Grand Theft Auto IV is added to the mix. If you're one of the unlucky ones who are frantically trying to get this working again, we have a couple of solutions for ya.

The first solution is a relatively simple one. To quote resident GTANet staffer Justin:

Before you go ahead and say goodbye to your hard work in deleting your saved game (as suggested by T2), try signing out of the PlayStation Network (PSN). This can be done by either canceling the sign in process before it can be completed under the PlayStation Network option on the XMB, or - once signed in - navigating to your own PSN ID under Friends, hitting triangle and opting to sign out. For a permanent fix (i.e. so you don't have to go through this every time you turn on the system), disable your internet connection via Settings -> Network Settings -> Internet Connection.

The second solution is the official one from Take Two, and it's considerably more involved...

Read More

Canadians and the GTA IV Portrait Sweepstakes

Posted by Andy at 03:52. Category: General

Back when we posted about the launch of the Rockstar Social Club we mentioned the GTA IV Custom Portrait Sweepstakes, in which you could enter for a chance to win a portrait of yourself rendered in the style of GTA IV artwork. As some folks have noted, though, Canadian residents aren't allowed to take part in this little event.

So, what's the deal?

Back when we visited New York City a couple of weeks ago, I spoke to a couple of individuals from the marketing department with Rockstar New York. I brought up the subject of Canadians being exempt from the sweepstakes, to which they cited Canadian law as the reason for the exemption.

Here's an excerpt from an article that touches on Canadian sweepstakes law:

Canadian sweepstakes law, unlike American law, requires that the third component, "winners are chosen by luck," is removed. Sponsors cannot use pure luck to determine who wins a sweepstake. There must be at least some element of skill involved.

In order remove the element of pure chance, sponsors narrow the field of potential winners by requiring a skill testing question to enter their contests. Every entrant does not have the same chance to win; only those who at least pass the skill testing question are eligible to win prizes. Of course, this is only a technicality. Most people can pass the skill testing questions without difficulty, although sponsors are required to make the test somewhat challenging.

So there you have it. It has nothing to do with Rockstar "singling out" Canadian citizens or leaving us high and dry out of spite. The reason we aren't included in this sweepstakes is that Canadian law requires different rules to be done up here.

Friday, May 02, 2008

MADD Demands AO Rating and Halted Distribution for GTA IV

Posted by Andy at 15:10. Category: General

The fun never stops. The North American-based "anti-alcohol organization" known as MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) is up in arms over Grand Theft Auto IV, claiming that the game's ability to let Niko get behind the wheel while inebriated makes GTA IV worthy of an Adults Only rating. To step their publicity stunt and up a notch, MADD claims that they have appealed to the "game's manufacturer" (Take Two?) to halt production of the game out of social responsibility, "out of respect for those who've been hurt or killed by drunk drivers".

While this is no doubt yet another case of an organization embracing controversial subject matter for the explicit purpose of PR -- something that we are definitely no strangers to as Grand Theft Auto fans -- it's a little bit more difficult to lambast MADD as a whole. In general, their message is a solid one, campaigning against drunk driving on behalf of those who have been hurt (in one way or another) by drunk drivers. That being said, though, it's disappointing to see MADD go after GTA IV, simply because it's such a ridiculous -- and ridiculously predictable -- way of grabbing attention in the media.

For that reason, I'd like to offer a little reminder to any members of MADD who may, for some odd reason, be reading this update:

Grand Theft Auto does not promote drunk driving, and if anything, goes to certain lengths to persuade players to not get behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol. Through in-game dialogue, characters openly state that they should not be driving while intoxicated; the in-game UI insists that players take a cab rather than drive to their destination while drunk; if a player still chooses to get behind the wheel of a virtual car while drunk, the driving is extremely difficult and the player finds themselves being pursued by the police.

As with most things in Grand Theft Auto, the game gives players the freedom to choose -- and suffer the consequences of their choices. The game is a satirical take on American culture, and that should always be kept in mind when criticizing the game for being openly controversial.

Rockstar also had this to say in response to the organization's request for the rating to be adjusted and demand for distribution of GTA IV to be halted:

We have a great deal of respect for MADD's mission, but we believe the mature audience for "Grand Theft Auto IV" is more than sophisticated enough to understand the game's content.

(Keep in mind, of course, that an M rated game is for 17+, and AO is for 18+. The only tangible difference between the two is that retailers, for the most part, refuse to sell AO-rated games -- so MADD is essentially asking for the game to be plucked out of existence entirely.)

Cheers to GTA4.TV for nabbing this news from GameSpot. Further coverage of the story can be found with a quick search on Google, as well.

Related Links: Article on GameSpot, Story Coverage on Google News

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Rockstar's gift to the gaming press

Posted by adamcs at 17:00. Category: General

Lucky bastards...

Pisswasser Pisswasser

Link: Kikizo: Get Drunk on Rockstar's Piswasser.

(Kikizo's Grand Theft Auto IV review is being released today, by the way.)

(UPDATE) Kikizo's GTA 4 review is now live! Check it out now and see if you agree with their assessment of the game.

"The Final Word: Yes, it's worth all the hype and more. I absolutely love this game, and I can't WAIT for the episodic updates. Just make sure you get both of those endings! And don't even think about using cheats until you've done it properly." (Overall Score: 10/10)

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