More Reviews
REVIEWS Evolution: Battle for Utopia Review
Be the captain of an expedition to a distant planet in a multi-genre game or you got your resource management chocolate in my RPG peanut butter!

Dark Souls II Review
[PC Version Update!] Sweet Dreams are made of these: Some of them want to abuse you; some of them want to be abused.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Skylanders Trap Team Preview
Don't worry, folks. Admiral Ackbar is all over this.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Release date: 04/29/14

Bound by Flame
Release date: 05/09/14

Wolfenstein: The New Order
Release date: 05/20/14

Drakengard 3
Release date: 05/21/14


LATEST FEATURES Bandai Namco's Global Gamers Day Showcase
In Las Vegas, Ryan Bates and I poured through Bandai Namco's full catalogue of titles and learn what the publisher has in store this year.

The Gaming Charities at PAX East 2014
Pause your game and make a difference. Gamers can go beyond player two by helping many others with these charities.
 
Coming Soon

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP maca2kx Metal Gear Solid was a watershed moment in gaming for me. The graphics, at the time, were phenomenal; the story was winding and engaging; the gameplay was sharp and not above breaking the fourth wall when appropriate. It’s one of the few titles where the number of times I’ve...

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Member Review for the PS2

Bark-Bar6ok By:
Bark-Bar6ok
08/13/07
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Action 
PLAYERS
PUBLISHER Rockstar 
DEVELOPER Rockstar 
RELEASE DATE Out Now
M Contains Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Drugs

What do these ratings mean?

I'm not going to beat around the bush. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is the single best PlayStation 2 title I have ever played. It's larger than the biggest RPG, has more story than the heftiest adventure game, and has almost as many mini-games as Nintendo's Mario Party. Additionally, it has a production value that's second to none, boasts a faithfulness to '90s source material with an eerie accuracy, and provides more hours of entertainment than all the previous Grand Theft Autos combined. In short, it's a terrific unending masterpiece of a game -- and one that will never fall victim to an over-exaggeration of its lofty status. It's the defining piece of software for Sony's successful sophomore system, and it's almost impossible to imagine a PlayStation 2 library without it.

Now I realize that with a statement like that, I leave a lot of expectations on the table. Immediate questions from longtime GTA players (and haters) will no doubt surface regarding what kind of problems San Andreas must have. Does the framerate still stutter? Is pop-in and draw distance still an issue? Are there any collision quandaries or other graphics-related bugs? Are the sound effects still tame by other action game standards? Does the AI ever have stupid moments or not perform the way you'd want it to? And is it true that there's absolutely no form of online play whatsoever? To be honest, the answer to all those questions is a definite yes. But an even better question to ask (and one that has a lot more direct impact) is, "Do any of the issues explored above really detract from the overall experience?" In a word: No.

But how is that possible? Isn't that a significant number of concerns for one game to handle? Sure it may sound like the case when clumped together like that, but in practice it's almost completely unnoticeable. For starters, the frequencies at which the graphical hitches mentioned above appear in comparison to when they don't is so lopsided, that I'm left unaffected. Additionally, there's literally so much to experience in the single player game that the lack of online play isn't missed in the least, while the minor sound effect kinks and other presentational issues get completely dwarfed by everything else that the game manages to do right.

The big curiosity, of course, is just what is it that San Andreas does so right in the first place? After all, IGN and every other videogame publication on the planet have been sworn to secrecy since first getting our hands on the game late last week. And while it's true that we've told you all about the different kinds of features that Rockstar had plans to implement by release day, nobody's talked about how those features actually felt. Even more importantly, though, no one has mentioned the number one reason that Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is so amazing to begin with: it's the first game I can ever remember that asks its players to wonder "What can't you do" as opposed to "What can you?"

Johnson N The Hood
The storyline of San Andreas should feel somewhat familiar to fans of 1990s cinema. Borrowing rather heavily from John Singleton, Spike Lee, and Ernest Dickerson pictures, this iteration of Grand Theft Auto is all about the thug life when it was still in its infancy. Following the exploits of young Carl Johnson, the game begins as CJ returns from exile in Liberty City after learning that his mother's been killed via unknown circumstances. CJ feels pretty torn about coming back too, as he originally left Los Santos five years ago when his younger brother Brian was mercilessly gunned down. Nevertheless, family's family and Carl returns home to San Andreas to pay his respects


More information about Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
 
comments powered by Disqus

More On GameRevolution