FutureFive NZ - The Ballad of Gay Tony

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The Ballad of Gay Tony

Rockstar’s first batch of episodic content for Grand Theft Auto IV, The Lost and Damned, demonstrated how to breathe new life into an existing game world. Liberty City existed as we knew it beforehand, but rather than through the eyes of newly arrived Serbian immigrant Niko Bellic, we saw it as biker-gang member Johnny Klebitz. It allowed us to participate in a culture quite alien to Bellic and, subsequently, to enjoy a vastly different experience. The Ballad of Gay Tony, the final episode in the Grand Theft Auto IV story, manages to flesh out the world of Liberty City once again. This time as Luis Lopez, bodyguard and business partner to the owner of two of Liberty City’s hottest clubs, the player gets to experience the glitzier and more up-market aspects of Liberty City society. You’ll participate in the nightlife (managing clubs and even cutting some shapes on the dance floor), pilot military-grade assault choppers and base jump from the city’s tallest buildings. Lopez still has ties to his lower-class roots, however, and he still negotiates shady deals in Liberty’s seedy underbelly. And much like The Lost and Damned before it, The Ballad of Gay Tony introduces a host of new weapons, vehicles and radio and television content. The new vehicles include the aforementioned assault chopper, the reintroduction of tanks, and the new weapons include a particularly nifty shotgun with explosive rounds; they all allow for some unique set pieces, and arguably some of the more interesting missions of the three episodes. The new radio and television content really contributes to the sense that you’re living in a fluid city; you’ll also see billboards scattered around town advertising such new television content as Princess Robot Bubblegum (a hilarious must-watch!). And again, the expertly delivered storyline intersects with those of Bellic and Klebitz, allowing you a rare insight into key plot developments from a different perspective. There’s a lot to keep you occupied, and it’s the perfect excuse to revisit the truly dynamic Liberty City one last time.

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