Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My quest for cheap, uncut violence - Part 5

I have succeeded. And it feels good.

My copy of Grand Theft Auto IV came in the mail the other day, fresh from overseas. I could hardly believe it when I saw the packaging. Inspecting the padded envelope, I saw a customs sticker that had a section to write a description of the contents. It only read one word, written hastily in pen:

So there you have it. No bother from Customs. No chance of them lumping me in with pornographers and pedophiles. It was all just fucking smoke. Just an empty threat thrown about on the internet that amounted to nothing. Boo sucks to you, OFLC.

The game itself? Everything I thought it would be. And more. Here's just one example:
Driving along in my luxury sedan, I was happy enough just to take in the sights of Liberty City and listen to my friendly GPS voice ("in 100 yards, turn left") guide me through the streets. Suddenly my mobile phone rang. I brought it up on the screen and it said it was Little Jacob calling. Little Jacob was a rastafarian gangster who I had bonded with a few days earlier after helping him gun down a couple of rival drug dealers. I answered the call. Even though I could only understand a few words of his thick Jamaician accent, I eventually realised he wanted to go and play darts with me at a bar up north. I accepted and said I'd pick him up in an hour. I put the phone away and began to map out my GPS route to his house. While I was plotting my course, I lost control of my car and sideswiped a police cruiser that was waiting at the lights. His siren blared and the chase was on. I floored it. The sedan I was driving handled pretty well around corners but the traffic was heavy as it was rush hour. Time to take to the back alleys. Another police car had joined the chase and both were right on my back bumper. At this point, I knew the meeting with Jacob would have to wait. With one hand on the wheel and one eye on the road, I brought up my mobile and scrolled through the phonebook to his number. I drove through a few red lights and the police sirens blared behind me as Jacob picked up the phone. I apologised and said I wouldn't be able to make darts right now. His accent was indecipherable, but his tone suggested it was okay. I hung up and drove into a nearby park, still at top speed. One clip of a park bench and the car was totalled, rolling end over end. I ran on foot. Running across a busy freeway, I did my best to hide behind a small tenement building until the police lost track of me. When I was sure the coast was clear, I stood up and walked calmly down the street. I saw a nice blue SUV parked on the opposite side of the street so I hotfooted it across, elbowed the window and hotwired the engine. Luckily the owner hadn't installed an alarm. Sitting in the drivers seat with the engine running, I called Jacob back and suggested a game of darts now that everything had calmed down. And I soundly defeated him too. By forty points.
None of what I did was part of any scripted mission. You could play the game for years and not come across these series of events. It was just something that happened.

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