America's favorite guilty pleasure is back and bigger than ever, as Rockstar Games unveiled the fifth installment of the wildly popular and controversial Grand Theft Auto series earlier this month.
The release of the game was heavily anticipated, and surely lived up to the hype. With sales surpassing the billion dollar mark after just three days, GTA V takes the title of fastest to reach that number in all of entertainment.
What makes this game so spectacular? Similar to the previous four games, gamers assume the role of a criminal motivated by money and power, gallivanting through an expansive and highly-detailed open-world map.
While earlier games offered a respectable level of customizability, the sheer level of detail in GTA V allows players to customize their characters and pursuits like never before. Even the resolution of the plot is largely based on decisions made by the gamer early in the story.
With so many subplots and other activities to be played, GTA V offers up to 100 hours of gameplay, giving buyers unparalleled entertainment value for their money.
Unlike the other GTA games, this one is the first in the series to have multiple playable characters, allowing users to experience the storyline from a trio of angles on different missions and heists, while also playing out each personal plight.
Each one of the three characters offers gamers a unique set of skills and colorful personalities, helping to keep players from getting bored of one character's life.
Many GTA fans are raving over the updated graphics, and rightfully so. The people and their movements are as realistic and fluid as ever before seen in a video game. While cruising in the player's car, truck, ATV, stolen city bus, personal plane or whatever their preferred method of travel, you may find yourself getting lost in the realism of the calming back roads of Blaine County or danger-filled Los Santos streets.
Turn on the radio and the player will find an enormous selection of music and news stations that would make most real life cities pale in comparison. A cruise with the radio on reveals a laundry list of musical icons from past and present, including Tupac, Britney Spears, Steve Miller Band, Kendrick Lamar, Robert Plant, Johnny Cash, Tyler, The Creator and many more.
The game even goes beyond the Xbox and Playstation with the new app, iFruit. Currently, only iOS devices have access to the app, but that will change in the future. This app allows you to interact with your specific game and receive up-to-date GTA V news for free.
Just as any of its four predecessors did at the time of their release, GTA V has experienced huge backlash due to the senseless violence and crude sexuality that the game has become known for, and this edition pushes the limits of both.
With this game taking place in a faux-Los Angeles, the already violent and lewd nature of the game is only heightened by the glamorous and cutthroat ways of Los Santos. Rockstar games made sure they'd grabbed headlines again by including a mission in which you conduct graphic torture that would make even the most hardened gaming veteran cringe.
All in all, Grand Theft Auto V is a cultural masterpiece. This game is incomparable to any other video game out there and is a must-have for any gamer, passive or passionate.