GTA V is just around the corner. Big whoop! Sure the trailer and early screen-shots look flash, but it also remains abundantly sterile and soulless, a quagmire the franchise has found itself shoulder deep in since GTA 3. Cutting out all of the stupid fun and silliness of the original (including the mowing down of a line of Hare-Krishna for simple chuckles) the now serious high-minded nature of professional criminality and all of the mucky business that goes with it is just tedious bobbins. A bit like the endless fecking cut-scenes! Where’s fast, frantic and notoriously daft fun when you need it?
Skate or Die. 720 was better.
Well, luckily for us some Canadian dude called Brian Provinciano has been crafting an open-world action parody in the form of an 8-bit styled gaming extravaganza. Retro City Rampage, on the face of it, appears to be the GTA V we really want; pure hokum where blowing the shit out of anything is everything. APB, Paperboy and Cannon Fodder all seem to be thrown into the mix for good measure, providing a return to what made Grand Theft Auto really marvellous in the first place. Fast, smooth scrolling graphics (see the gameplay videos available) making for a break-neck pace as civilians are blown to smithereens, cars are jacked, high-scores are totted up and achievements earned – a nice modern touch to complement the retro gaudiness of the visuals.
Sure it looks somewhat garish, but this really could be the essence of the Commodore 64 showcased on modern systems, not just simple emulation. And obviously it’s retro enough to make me feel ever so slightly giddy. Brian has even slaved over the game for the last seven years to get it right, mimicking the individual programmers that frequented yesteryear before big gaming studios were the done thing. If Retro City Rampage does the business we could, therefore, be mentioning Brian in the same breath as Tony Crowther, Jeff Minter, Manfred Trenz, Sensible Software, Archer McLean and Geoff Crammond. Groovy company indeed!
This could be based on any number of 8-bit titles. Inspired by Ikari Warriors?
Anyway, a release date isn’t far off and at just under ten quid on the PC it at least reflects former prices for 8-bit gaming. You could even pre-order from the games' website now!
Seriously can’t wait. A review of Retro City Rampage (the real GTA V) will be available after release and once I’ve given it considerable playtime. Is anyone else creaming in their jeans with the anticipation of it all?
Paperboy was actually a pretty rubbish game.