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GTA V: The killing spree deterrent?
by Mike Rose on 10/22/13 05:04:00 am   Editor Blog   Featured Blogs

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.


I finished up Grand Theft Auto V around a week ago - it was a pretty great experience, with pockets of dullness here and there. This week, however, I realized that I didn't once go on a killing spree during my 30+ hour playthrough.

Anyone who knows the GTA series will testify that going on killing sprees is sort of the secondary objective of a GTA game (or perhaps even the primary objective, depending on how you like to play). So for me to play through the entirety of a GTA title and not even consider aiming for a five-star wanted rating is rather odd.

So what exactly was the reason for this? Is GTA V's story or city laid out in such a way that I didn't feel the need to go crazy? Is the story just so good that I didn't want to shift away from it? Or perhaps there's just such an overwhelming amount of content to sift through, that going all sandbox-like with my gun-play seemed out of place?

I took my musings to Twitter to see if other people had found the same as me. If you have any thoughts on the topic, bang them into the comments!

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Ian Richard
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While I haven't played it I'd put my money on two things.

Killing spree's were done because you weren't engaged in the main goals. But now, Rockstar has a fancy story and more to do around town. Why make your own fun if you are already enjoying yourself?

Second, all killing spree's are the same. You've been repeating the same process with similar weapons for how many games now? Is there any point to going on yet another spree?
It was amazing the first time they called in the military for me... but now... it's just more of the same old.

Jacob Pederson
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I accidentally went on a killing spree when trying to find the assassination target that was a window washer, but other than that no.

Cameron Stark
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I noticed when I first started GTA IV, I didn't even steal any cars for the first half an hour or so. I was completely engrossed in how real the world seemed, that I couldn't bring myself to taint it with my criminal actions.

Now, GTA IV looks small and trivial next to V.

When I play V, it's almost the same way as when I first played IV. I'm just exploring the world and marveling at its detail, even halfway through the main story now. I don't feel the need to rack up the stars. Also, it's much easier to die now, and harder to lose the cops.

Vasco Vozone
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I'd say the main deterrent would be the money, if you didn't play your cards right with the stock market during the lester missions, you end up with a few million that can wash away pretty easily at end game, with little money to be earned.

The loss of ammo and life carries such an expense that going on sprees will end up limiting your other gameplay options like buying all the property or pimping up cars.

In my opinion, the story was excellent but I found that I had to keep a good eye on each character's bank account as it progressed (didn't take full advantage of the Lester missions).

I still went on more than a few sprees, causing car pile ups then tossing a grenade in to see the orchestral chain explosion, sniping out gas tanks from a building, etc, etc, but because there was so much to lose I only did them with auto save turned off so that I could get my money back, which I think I shouldn't even resort to.

In IV there was the problem that at end game you had loads of money but nowhere particularly interesting to spend it on, in SA you had plenty of places to spend money, without making much of a dent in your fortune, but then, there was always the option of blackjack to quickly recover your bucks.

The main problem I see in V is that even though you can make money in game (not counting the BAWSAQ stock market) from stickups, races and other random events, it's never really an amount that makes up for the effort involved.

Andy Lundell
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That's too bad.

My biggest disappointment with IV was that it was too "serious" compared to its predecessors. That "seriousness" really sucks the joy out of having a sandbox to create mayhem in.

I was really hoping that Rockstar had learned from that (what I considered to be a) mistake and gone back the other way for V.

I think maybe I won't be buying GTA V after all.