I’ve made it no secret: I loved GTA IV. I loved the story, thought that even though it had flaws, it was still a great game. I’ve also been excited to give the new DLC, The Lost and Damned, a whirl. So after downloading the new content and putting a few hours in, I figured it’s time for some impressions.
In keeping with the theme, let’s go with some bullet points.
- It’s still got the GTA IV flavor. Yes, you no longer play as Niko, the crazy immigrant. You now play as Johnny Klebitz, a member of a Liberty City motorcycle gang. It still feels like and plays like GTA IV, except now you’re riding around on a big chopper.
- That being said, cruising around Liberty City not as Niko is an odd sensation. This is not a bad thing. It feels nostalgic, almost
- One huge complaint about the original game was the lack of checkpoints during a mission. That has thankfully been rectified, and now if you fail a mission, you’re able to pick up right where the action started. This is a good thing.
- I didn’t mind the motorcycle riding in the original, but it’s definitely been improved for TLAD. Racing choppers with a bat to beat on your opponents is most satisfying.
- The moments where Niko’s story and Johnny’s overlap is a nice touch. Even during the opening cinematic, there’s a shot of Niko walking down the street, as if he’s passing the baton.
- The new weapons pack a nice punch.
- Things start out too suddenly. As Niko, you were eased into the storyline and there never seemed to be any “pressure” to further the story. In TLAD, the story seems top-heavy. Things come at you fast and furious so far and they haven’t seemed to slow down
- The main character, Johnny Klebitz, isn’t as enjoyable to play (at least initially) or as likable as Niko. You understood Niko’s motivations. Johnny’s are a little cliched and obvious. That can still change, but I’m not sold on him.
- The new weapons are fun but useless. They start you out with a powerful double-barrel sawed-off shotgun and then dump you into a shoot-out where the shotgun is worthless. It’s a blast to use while you’re riding around on your chopper, but I’ve already picked up all the other guns which are actually useful in a firefight.
- Yes, it’s the scene with the Johnny and the politician exhibitionist (Stubbs is his name, I believe). It’s un-com-fort-able. Even Johnny looks uncomfortable. I’d really rather not have another man’s wedding tackle in my video games, THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
I’m definitely not finished with TLAD but I’m happy with my purchase. I’m not in love with the story the way I was with Niko, but I’m willing to let it grow on me. I’m looking forward to continuing on with it.