The early impressions for one of Nintendo’s “core” E3 announcements, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars, are in. I know a few of you out there in comment jungle were critical of the graphics for this one (and the return to a kind of pseudo original GTA style), but this preview from Edge might at least get you back into the “worth a second look” column.
You still need to factor in GTA’s particularly glee-inducing brand of action, however, which instantly gives the experience a dazzling sense of life, propelled by a brand of dynamism and chaos rarely seen on Nintendo’s console in an age when an entire genre exists in which the player’s pleasure is derived from grooming digital dogs and then buying them little hats. The result, when running at full lick, with vehicles ripped apart by explosions, gunfire streaking across the streets and bodies keeling over in bloody pools, is mesmerizing.
Edge goes on to detail how this game, while constrained by the obvious hardware obstacles presented by the DS, feels like a GTA title. Bustling city life. People walking and driving and doing their mundane daily tasks. Police. Cars. Stealing cars. It’s all in there. Somehow, some way. I seriously think that, like a certain music title, there’s going to be a lot more to this title than people initially gave it credit for.
And on a personal note, I loved Edge’s head nod to Syndicate Wars. Back in the day, with my PowerMac 6100/60AV, I played hour after hour of the original Syndicate (the brainchild of Peter Molyneux when he was at Bullfrog). That excites me. Like, Hot Coffee excites me.