Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony is the second and possibly last episode in the Grand Theft Auto IV series that Rockstar released exclusively for the XBOX 360. It doesn’t tie in with the story of Nico Bellic in the original GTA IV but instead it focuses on an all new character in Liberty City. The game follows the story of Luis Lopez, a Hispanic guy who will do anything for the sake of his mother and to keep his close relationship intact with Tony Prince, the owner of some famous clubs in Liberty City, as his personal body guard. But his shady past as a drug dealer is sure to land him in trouble, the kind he can only count on himself to get out of.
Similar to the Lost and the Damned, Ballad of Gay Tony will be available via the XBOX Live Marketplace. If you have not had a chance to play the first episode of GTA IV, there will be a discounted standalone title that you can pick up that will include both Lost and The Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony. Both episodes take place in Liberty City, and include cameos of Nico Bellic.
So, with The Ballad of Gay Tony finally released in the market, what are the HOTs and NOTs in this game? Let’s take a look:
Since the Ballad of Gay Tony takes place in Liberty City, you will be exploring this city for the third and final time with Luis. The graphics are similar to the Lost and the Damned and GTA IV. Nothing much has changed, so you can expect the occasional glitch here and there.
One of the things that makes Grand Theft Auto series good are all the memorable characters you run into. Characters such as Yusuf, Tony, Armando and Mom give Luis the hell life he’s looking for. Paired with great voice acting, the characters in this game makes the cut scenes and presentation more immersive, similarly to the first episode and the original GTA IV.
Upon completion of the game, Luis can replay all of the missions for a better ranking. For each mission you complete in The Ballad of Gay Tony, you will be presented with a scoring board where your performance will be rated and sent to the Rockstar Social page. The game has a decent amount of missions and should take around 10 hours to finish. As always, GTA IV offers an open-ended world where you can do a lot of things if you want to take a break from the main storyline.
LC Cage Fight, Drug Empire, etc
There are things that you can do in the Ballad of Gay Tony other than the main missions. Throughout the game, mini games will appear in your Map that allow you to and earn achievements. One of these mini games unlocks the LC Cage fight (after the first three missions). It’s a brawler style mini game and the objective is to take out the enemies in a series of matches. Beat them all and receive the “Brawler king of Liberty City” title. Another interesting mini game that you can take part of is the Drug Empire by Luis’ friend, Armando.
Fly through the sky
One of the things I love in this game is the ability to take a chopper and fly through Liberty City. There will be missions in the game where you will be required to fly a chopper and defeat the enemies. Some missions in the game got me all pissed off due to the difficulty in controlling this vehicle (at one point, it took me 2 hours to just complete a singe related mission from Yusuf). There is also a pretty cool “Freefall” achievement that you can unlock. To survive this, at some point of the game, you will be given an opportunity to buy parachutes.
Face the glitch
Liberty City is big. If that’s the case, you should expect some glitches that you can encounter a long the way. The game doesn’t have the perfect graphics but Rockstar manages to maintain the beauty of this major urban environment.
Chopper Control is insane
As I stated previously, one of the things that really annoyed me in the game was the part where I had to use chopper. Since the controls have been somewhat changed, I had a hell of a hard time – Of course, this might not apply to you having had spent two hours on one damn mission is really annoying.
If you loved the multiplayer elements of the past GTA IV title, you might love it even more this time around as there are some new things that’s been added (new weapons such as tanks and smaller deathmatch arenas, to name a few). It’s only a minor change but it is worth looking at by GTA fans who enjoyed playing GTA IV online. I have only played a couple of online matches and it’s good but not that impressive for me. Basically, same thing with just new gadgets. Nothing impressive
Let’s face it, The Ballad of Gay Tony is another Grand Theft Auto masterpiece. Despite the glitches and control issues that I’ve encountered, the game manages to maintain the favorite things we love about Grand Theft Auto. From its memorable characters to awesome missions, The Ballad of Gay Tony is worth the $20. If you love Lost and The Damned, there is no reason why you shouldn’t buy this; you won’t be disappointed.
[Editor’s Note: Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony was reviewed on a Xbox 360 platform. The DLC was provided to us by the publisher]Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony Review,