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PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!


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Grand Theft Auto 3 - Features & Screens

by Rainier on May 21, 2002 @ 12:20 a.m. PDT

We all know by now that GTA3 shipped to stores today so the long wait for the PC users is almost over. Today we serve up in game info, a closer look at the audio in the game (music, sounds, gunfire, car crashes) and a 20 some screens to keep you panting until you get your own copy ... NJOY!

Liberty City, USA. Welcome to America's worst city. You've been betrayed and left for dead. Now you're taking revenge, unless the city gets you first. Mob bosses need a favor, crooked cops need help and street gangs want you dead. You'll have to do whatever you can just to stay out of serious trouble.

Grand Theft Auto 3 now comes home to the PC in May, 2002. Featuring a fully living city, a combination of narrative driven and non-linear gameplay and a completely open environment, the game represents a huge leap forward in interactive entertainment. For the first time, players are put at the heart of their very own gangster movie, and let loose in a fully realized 3 dimensional city, in which anything can happen and probably will.

With a cast of hundreds, 50 plus vehicles, ranging from sports cars to ice cream trucks and from boats to buses, 3 hours of music, including opera, reggae, house, drum and bass, pop and disco, a huge array of street-ready weapons and some of the seediest characters in video game history, Grand Theft Auto 3 is a sprawling epic which will show you that sometimes, crime can pay and sometimes it can pay you back.

Grand Theft Auto 3 has received worldwide critical and financial success since its release for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system last October and quickly became the undisputed number-one selling video game of 2001. Grand Theft Auto 3 continues to be a phenomenon taking the videogame industry by storm. In addition to receiving more than 25 awards, including several "Game of the Year" commendations, Grand Theft Auto 3 has garnered critical acclaim from all corners of the media. From articles in The New York Times, The Associated Press and USA Today to a cover story in SCEA's Official PlayStation Magazine, the press has unanimously praised the game for its technical innovation and groundbreaking design.


  • Customizable Skins. You now have the ability to swap players skins. Draw your own textures and apply them to the main character.
  • Create Your Own MP3 Radio Station. The radio stations in Grand Theft Auto 3 are world-renowned for their quality and sense of humor. Now you can use your own MP3 files to create your own custom selectable radio station.
  • Replay Saves. Want to see that jump again? The game now has replay ability. Store up to 30 seconds of action that can be replayed at any time and saved so you can send your replays to others.
  • PC Control Layout. Mouse and keyboard control scheme allows targeting-free gameplay, or attach a PC gamepad and play classic Grand Theft Auto 3.


  • Liberty City is a complete physical universe with laws, rules, standards, ethics and morals. They are yours to follow or to shatter.
  • Over 60 missions and tons of side missions.
  • Work your way through the hierarchy of the gangs, meet bigger bosses, and get better jobs.
  • Multi-layered missions interweave story elements from level to level.
  • Revenge plot drives the player through the game, whilst retaining non-linearity and freedom of previous games.
  • Over two dozen ways to take out other characters: fist fighting (punch, kick and head butt), base ball bat, handgun, Uzi, machine gun, M-16, rocket launcher, grenade, Molotov cocktail and flame thrower.
  • Organized police forces including cops, SWAT Teams, FBI, and the Army work strategically to keep Liberty City properly corrupt and somewhat safe.


  • Liberty City is divided into 3 districts: Portland (the industrial zone), Staunton Island (commercial district) and Shoreside Vale (the suburban neighborhood) all connected by bridges and tunnels. Each has its own look and feel - different kinds of buildings, cars, and inhabitants. As you progress through the game, new areas will open up to you eventually allowing access to the whole city.
  • The streets of Liberty City are jammed with over 50 different types of vehicles, each with their own physics. All ripe for the plucking, cabs, sedans, family cars, mini vans, SUVs, trucks (pick-ups to 18 wheelers), sports cars, convertibles, buses (school buses and metro buses), fire engines, ambulances, SWAT vehicles, and even the ice cream man are on the move in fear of losing their ride. When trying to escape a jam, boats and trains help transport players from one side of the city to the next.
  • Vehicles take damage on 18 different panels.
  • The time of day and night affects every mission. This city is a very different place at night and some missions can only be performed at certain times of day.
  • A full-weather eco-system (including rain, fog, thunder and lightning) also affects gameplay. For example, rain makes roads slippery, fog reduces visibility, etc.
  • Unpredictable pedestrian AI makes for wicked nights and strange days throughout Liberty City. Hundreds of pedestrians each with their own characteristics populate Grand Theft Auto 3's intersections and alleyways. Businessmen hurry to work, gang members look for trouble, and hookers prowl for business. Each character acts and reacts to situations and the activity surrounding them in their own unique way.
  • Over two hours of music make up the soundtrack for the City. Each vehicle is tuned to its own radio station playing a combination of licensed tracks, specially created music and talk radio.


Grand Theft Auto 3's audio is the latest incarnation from the award winning audio team who raised the standard of interactive audio and sound tracks with Grand Theft Auto, Wild Metal Country and GTA2.

The Sound Design for Grand theft Auto 3 was approached as if it were a movie. The incredible 3D audio system is completely dynamic, all sounds being referenced and scaled form the players point of perspective. As a result the player becomes the staring roll as they experience the sound quality of a movie but in real time and interactively, leaving how games used to sound behind.


The audio engine is able to deal with the entire array of collisions that can happen in the city. Given that hardly anything is bolted down, there are thousands of combinations the player can cause. Different surfaces and objects have been modelled acoustically guarantying the correct sounds are used for every collision, no matter how hard or soft the impact may be. From buses driving into lamp posts which fall over and land on wooden benches with metal legs, causing one end scraping on grass the other on concrete whilst brushing against a hedge, to two people bumping into each other. The gaming experience becomes truly immersive, bringing the player into the next generation of "real time" Sound Design.

In Game Speech

There are well over two thousand spoken pedestrian reactions, reacting to the player and each other as they go about their business in Liberty City. With upwards of one hundred and thirty different voices each with a unique personality performed by sixty actors. Played one after an other this adds up to over two hours of interactive speech. On top of that there are around sixty-five motion captured sequences to lead the player through the game, performed by a further fourteen Hollywood actors.


With more memory and more channels available this time round, it has been possible to put much more detail in to the sound design for the cars. The car engines have been approached in a brand new way. As the power is applied to the engine by the player, (rather than the conventional pitching of a loop), the sound of the car accelerating and decelerating is of such a standard that, any movie Sound Designer could use it as a tool in their next production. The sounds of the tyres are varied by the surface being driven on, the wetness of the surface's and how much the tyres are skidding. Even the hood, doors and trunk also all make sounds as they flap around after being damaged.


Every character in Liberty City has favourite radio stations they listen to when in their car. If you car jack Marie ( the old Italian woman ) while she's listening to Classical FM you can retune to nine different radio stations, broadcasting over 5 hours of music consisting of around fifty song. Each station specialises in music ranging from Classical to Hip Hop to Reggae and of course Head Radio features the original GTA audio team with their star guests "Bratney Swears", "Moldy" !! and DMA's latest, popstars - the boy band "Boyz 2 Girlz ?". Ten DJ's parody a wide mix of contemporary and classic radio. With twenty hilarious commercials and dozens of jingles, not forgetting one hour of Talk Radio hilarity, plus informative news flashes and police radio, keeping the player up to date with all the chaos and disorder in the city.


Not just a living city and driving game , Grand Theft Auto 3 is a shoot em up and fighting game
among other things. The weapon sounds have been designed to not only fit in with the rest of the cities ambience but actually contribute to the sense of scale and believability of the environment.

Weather effects

When it rains in Liberty City the roads lose traction, even the car tyres sound different in the wet. The rain is actually modelled dynamically in real time so you can hear the rain bouncing off cars as they pass by.

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