GTA V: Separating fact from desperate need for attention
There seems to be a lot of people who are still holding onto false hope of seeing a character from Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City or San Andreas make an appearance in Rockstar’s upcoming GTA V.
Ever since GTA IV came out I had this odd feeling that everything from the PS2/Xbox GTA titles was gone. Done. Finished. The biggest hint was when the first ever details were released and the three islands that make up Liberty City, now had different names. Gone was Portland, Stauten Island, and Shoreside Vale. In their place was Broker, Algonquin and Alderney.
Next was the lack of familiar landmarks or locations. Mama Cipriani’s and Luigi’s Sex Club 7 were absent. 8-Ball’s Bomb Shop garages were gone as well. Ammunation was missing as like in real-world NYC, gun shops are banned. Yet, people still referred to the scene of the final mission in GTA IV as Salvatore’s Mansion. For those with a foggy memory, Salvatore Leone was the head of the Leone Family Mafia in GTA III and played a role in San Andreas. The location referred to as Salvatore’s Mansion is actually a rundown abandoned casino as stated in dialog during the game. To top that off, there is no mention of Salvatore or the Leone Family at all when you finally do get involved with 2008’s mafia in Liberty City.
Even more telling was a hint that could be found in multiple locations, but did not stick out to the casual observer. Throughout Liberty City there was graffiti work… Yes, I am aware that there are pieces of past GTA characters, but that is not what I am referring to. In certain buildings, most commonly the housing projects in North Algonquin. The graffiti was a memorial of sorts to past GTA characters, with RIP tributes to them all.
Vic (Vance, from GTA: Vice City Stories)
Tommy (Verceti, from GTA: Vice City)
CJ (Carl Johnson, from GTA: San Andreas)
Toni (Ciprian,i from GTA: Liberty City Stories)
Claude (from GTA III)
Dan House of Rockstar has also said that the PS2/Xbox era of GTA games were one universe and that GTA IV started a new one. He confirmed also that we can expect some characters from GTA IV and the expansion Episodes from Liberty City, to possibly make an appearance. He also said to not expect characters from GTA III-era games to appear. That last bit brings me to my next point:
The Game… the rather annoying west coast rapper who has overstayed his welcome… Not Grand Theft Auto V.
A few months back, prior to Game Informer’s huge GTA V cover story (which provided the public with the first legit bit of info about the anticipated title) The Game made a public statement saying that his character, B-Dup, from San Andreas would return. That conflicts with what Houser said. Dan Houser, Rockstar’s Vice President of Creative. I doubt Houser would make that type of faux pas with his own product.
The Game was a relative unknown at the time of San Andreas being released, his biggest fan base being directly in the west coast with a handful of fans further east with mix tapes and downloads. He wasn’t even part of G-Unit at the time. His character of B-Dup was so minor, you would miss his performance altogether unless you were keen and focused on finding Game’s character.
Rockstar hasn’t given a public acknowledgement about The Game being involved in any way with GTA V. The only confirmed bits outside of official Rockstar statements/interviews/articles is the confirmation of Kavinsky and Alchemist being involved on the music side of things. Kavinsky is said to be the host of Nightride FM, a new Los Santos radio station. For those unfamiliar with Kavinsky, I direct you to the indie flick, Drive with Ryan Gosling. The song that plays during the opening credits is simply amazing, and was all I needed to hear to be sold on Kavinsky being a DJ and even his music being in the game. Alchemist, well if you have listened to any hip-hop music from the 90’s to today, you have heard this legendary producer’s work.
The Game is either really a part of GTA V or is extremely desperate for more attention from the public. Last week he released an image of himself looking all gangsta (played out) and the image was in the style of GTA artwork, complete with the Rockstar Games logo. Rockstar still hasn’t even (at the time of posting) made any acknowledgement of this artwork. Granted, Game could be campaigning to get involved with GTA V but this late into production? Seems like this is more a cry for media attention.
Regardless, there was need for this to be posted after almost every video game based website that is covering GTA needing to post this being a new fact or something.
If you want to know my opinion on which character from GTA IV is most likely to appear in GTA V, my money is on Packie. Here is my reasoning:
The Ballad of Gay Tony is running parallel to Niko’s story in the main game of GTA IV. The Ballad of Gay Tony starts during the Three Leaf Clover mission, so Niko is already established in Algonquin and eventually Alderney. At the end of GTA IV, when Niko is on Happiness Island, if you look close enough behind Niko, (it’s better to see if it is night time) there is a small explosion in the sky. This is the private plane Ray Bulgarian is aboard that Luis Lopez escapes from in the final mission of Ballad of Gay Tony. This is a symbol of the end of the current storyline in Liberty City. As Niko’s story is fully at an end with the chase from the casino to Happiness, and with Luis taking care of Ray, the story is over. (This was confirmed by Rockstar as many fans, after playing Ballad of Gay Tony was wondering if the plane blowing up was the explosion seen in the sky on Happiness Island. Keep in mind prior to Ballad, Ray is absent from the main story, he only appears two times. Once after killing Faustin, and during the hostage exchange, so luckily with Ballad of Gay Tony we got that closure.)
Now, that the ending of GTA IV has been explained, during the credits of Ballad of Gay Tony, Packie -who in Ballad, is only seen three small times prior: the opening scene (Three Leaf Clover), when Luis and Tony are using the chopper to tail Packie to find Gracie, and finally during the exchange of Gracie for the Diamonds- is seen getting out of a taxi at Francis International Airport carrying a suitcase that looks similar to the one carried by CJ at the beginning of San Andreas. Now, he could be going anywhere, but after the release of Ballad of Gay Tony, on Rockstar’s Social Club website there was an image of a plane ticket with the final destination being Los Santos, and the origin being Liberty City…