Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories is an open world action-adventure video game developed by Rockstar Leeds in conjunction with Rockstar North and published by Rockstar Games. Released on 24 October 2005, for the PlayStation Portable, it is the ninth game in the Grand Theft Auto series and was preceded by Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and succeeded by Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories. It is a prequel to Grand Theft Auto III. It was published and distributed by Capcom for the Japanese release. It was released on PlayStation 3 via the PlayStation Network on 2 April 2013.
|Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories|
|Series||Grand Theft Auto|
|Mode(s)||Single-player, multiplayer (PSP)|
A port for the PlayStation 2 was released on 6 June 2006 in North America. At the time of release, the recommended retail price of the PS2 port was around half the price of the PSP version. The PS2 port does not feature the custom soundtrack ripping capability, in comparison to its PSP counterpart. It was also released for iOS, Android and Fire OS devices on 17 December 2015, 11 February 2016, and 11 March 2016 respectively.
Liberty City's layout is largely similar to Grand Theft Auto III, while it also incorporates elements found in Grand Theft Auto III's successors, such as more indoor environments, clothing changes, and motorcycles. In addition, in keeping with recent Grand Theft Auto games, the player has more flexibility in terms of moving the camera around for viewing surroundings (Grand Theft Auto III is noticeably limited in that respect). Things that are omitted from this game are the ability to climb and the ability to swim – contact with deep bodies of water is instantly fatal in this game. The overall sandbox play area, as it is based upon the original Liberty City layout, is considerably smaller than that of San Andreas.
Differently from GTA III, motorcycles are usable in the game. Though airplanes and helicopters can be found in Vice City and San Andreas, usable airplanes cannot be found in Liberty City Stories.
The PSP version of Liberty City has a multiplayer mode, for up to six players through Wi-Fi ad-hoc mode (same area). The game features seven modes of wireless multiplayer gaming, in which various pedestrian and character models are from the single player mode avatars. These multiplayer modes were removed in the PS2 and mobile versions.
In 1998, Antonio "Toni" Cipriani, having been forced into living abroad after killing a made man on the orders of Salvatore Leone, decides to return to Liberty City. Upon arrival, Toni is greeted by Salvatore and a member of the Leone family, Vincenzo "Lucky Vinnie" Cilli, who rose to prominence during Toni's absence. Vincenzo is instructed by Salvatore to set Toni up with an apartment and job in Liberty City. Not long after, Toni quits upon the realisation that Vincenzo had set up a job designed to ensure Toni would be caught by the police. Toni then begins working with a former member of the rival Sindacco crime family now loyal to Leone, J.D. O'Toole, but this is short-lived as another member of the Leone crime family is ordered to kill O'Toole on the same day he was intended to become a made man within the family.
A time after, Toni receives a call from Vincenzo during which he insists that he is apologetic toward the situation regarding Toni's previous job with him and asks Toni to meet. However, this turns out to be a trap set by Vincenzo so that he gets Toni's place in the Leone family. Toni is then attacked by henchmen loyal to Vincenzo but quickly subdues them and kills Vincenzo in the process. Following Vincenzo's death, Toni resumes working for Salvatore Leone.
Toni reunites with his mother only to be met by her disapproval of his status within the Leone ranks. She orders a hit on Toni but he manages to kill the hitmen instead, leaving the business unfinished between both he and his mother. Toni's relationship with Salvatore and his wife, Maria, grows as he continues working for them eventually leading Salvatore to place his trust in Toni and set him up in a larger apartment in exchange for Toni chauffeuring them to a secluded area of Liberty City and away from the rising attacks on the Leone family by various gangs. In particularly, a war is orchestrated between the three leading Mafia families, the Leones, Sindaccos, and Forellis.
Toni continues working for the Leone family in an effort to display his loyalty and eventually becomes a made man as a result. Toni's mother receives the news and is elated to learn her son's status has finally risen to what she'd hoped and eventually calls off the hit she had ordered on Toni previously. The celebration is cut short however, as the Liberty City police arrive and arrest Salvatore under suspicion that he is a gang leader known only as "Mr. Big". Toni remains loyal to Salvatore and poses as his lawyer, while continuing to accept jobs from him which led to Toni attacking Salvatore's rivals, culminating with Toni killing the head of the Sindacco family, Paulie Sindacco, who was the main reason of Salvatore's arrest and had made the new mayor arrest Salvatore.
Toni soon becomes a respected leader within the Leone family. Salvatore is eventually taken to trial, an event which his rivals plan to use as an opportunity to be rid of him. Toni realises this and intervenes, keeping Leone safe. After Salvatore is released on bail, he comes to conclude that Massimo Torini is behind his troubles and realises that to prevent recently elected mayor, Miles O'Donovan, from dropping the charges against Leone that Torini has taken the mayor hostage.
Both Salvatore and Toni head to the island where Torini is holding the mayor and a fight ensues, resulting in the two killing Torini and using the time with the mayor to establish that O'Donovan is now in the Leone family's debt and as the game concludes, Salvatore demands that O'Donovan grant protection to the Leone family while Toni attempts to unsettle the mayor to ensure it is granted. Afterward, it is revealed that Torini was the underboss of Salvatore's uncle, who had been trying to undermine his nephew's control of the city.
As stated in an IGN preview, "Rockstar dropped Renderware in favor of a brand new in-house engine to best utilize the resolution, texture density and particle effects of the PSP". Until the release of Liberty City Stories, RenderWare had been the game engine behind every 3D game in the Grand Theft Auto III era. Liberty City Stories used Image Metrics for the game's facial animation.
An enhanced port of the game, with touchscreen controls, real-time lighting, high-definition textures and draw distance, was released in December 2015 for iOS, February 2016 for Android and March 2016 for Fire OS.
Liberty City Stories features ten radio stations, which comprise a mix of both licensed music and tracks created specifically for the game, and talk radio stations. A feature for the PSP version of the game is the ability to listen to custom soundtracks.
To implement the custom soundtrack feature, Rockstar placed the application called "Rockstar Custom Tracks v1.0" on the official site under the "Downloads" section. This then gave people the chance to use the custom soundtracks feature. The application is based on Exact Audio Copy.
|Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories|
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories received mostly positive reception, with a 9.0/10 from IGN. In the United States, the PlayStation 2 version of Liberty City Stories had sold 1 million copies by February 2007. In the United States alone, Liberty City Stories' PSP release sold 980,000 copies and earned $48 million by August 2006. During the period between January 2000 and August 2006, it was the 16th highest-selling game launched for the Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS or PlayStation Portable in that country. As of 26 March 2008, Liberty City Stories sold 8 million copies according to Take-Two Interactive. The PlayStation Portable version of Liberty City Stories received a "Double Platinum" sales award from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA), indicating sales of at least 600,000 copies in the United Kingdom. ELSPA gave the game's PlayStation 2 version a "Platinum" certification, for sales of at least 300,000 copies in the region.
The PlayStation 2 version was criticised for lacking improvement, the same portable coding and removing certain features from the PSP version. It currently holds a 77.38% on GameRankings and 78/100 on Metacritic.
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Rockstar Custom Tracks was developed by Rockstar Leeds with the creator of Exact Audio Copy. Rockstar Custom Tracks has benefited enormously from the expertise of the author, Andre Wiethoff. Thanks Andre!
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