- + First-Person perspective
- + Dynamic lightning
- + DualShock 4 speaker for phone calls and police scanner
- + Increased draw distances
- + Same awesome missions and characters
- + More wildlife
How do you make one of the greatest video games ever, even better? It’s a task that not many developers would be able to pull off but of course, Rockstar aren’t just anyone. Having been wildly successful upon its original launch, Rockstar unleashed what many consider their finest work to date; introducing a three-way campaign to GTA, without any sexual innuendo. I loved GTA V on PS3 but its Current-Gen overhaul has made me fall in love with it all over again.
With re-releases of older games becoming common place, it would’ve been easy for Rockstar to present GTA V with a new coat of paint and charge another £40-50. Thankfully that hasn’t happened, and the results of reengineering the game on more powerful hardware have been phenomenal: more cars populate the roads, a crystal-clear sky features less smog and shrubbery has been redesigned entirely, looking bushier and a lot more realistic.
As extensive as the graphical differences are though, Rockstar didn’t stop there. With the addition of a first-person perspective every aspect of the game has had to be altered. The ability to scrutinise even the smallest detail up close, has meant that every texture and small environmental feature has been re-tuned in obsessive detail. Each vehicle now also has its own modelled interior, with working speedometers and a personality to match. Hopping onto a bike and putting on your helmet will change how things look, too.
The wildlife you encounter on the streets and amidst the hills of Los Santos has also been increased. I never thought having more animals would be such a joy, but kicking or drive-by-shooting dogs and cats have now become a common activity for me. I could go on for hours about how much I love to stroll the streets of Los Santos when it rains or when it goes dark, how much I love to see the new lighting effects bring new life to my surroundings. I now play as much as I can from a first-person perspective, however I often find it more enjoyable to look outside vehicles whilst I’m controlling them – there’s only so much I can pay attention to whilst travelling over a hundred miles an hour in first-person, alongside half the army on my tail. Those who want to be able to customise their control system or want perspective to change automatically depending on the situation, can do so via the control settings.
I didn’t realise how different the gameplay would feel out of a third-person perspective. Performing something as simple as a punch straight into someone’s face has never looked so brutal, and don’t get me started on what happens when you pull out a knife. Everything feels more realistic and I’m amazed at how well GTA’s gameplay makes the transition. Sure, animations have had to be re-hashed and the detail of everything you hold has had to be increased dramatically, but in terms of its core, playing GTA in first-person feels like it should’ve happened a long time ago. My best moment has to be driving a car off a mountain whilst in first-person, as I tumbled down with the world spinning on my screen. If only they made digital sick bags.
All-in-all GTA V on PS4 or Xbox One is a fresh experience that manages to out do itself at every turn. I always imagine how I would feel if I could return to something I loved with the knowledge that I could push myself even further. Rockstar have been lucky enough to do just that, and the results are nothing short of astounding. In comparison between the two platforms, I did notice slightly better performance on PS4 when compared to Xbox One. Make sure you check out the direct comparison video above to make up your own mind on the matter.
Whether you’re lucky enough to experience the game for the first time or are looking to head back to Los Santos, GTA V ‘re-mastered’ not only sets the bar for open world video games but also serves as a small glimpse into what its developer can accomplish on a re-run. If tweaking to a year old game can produce this, what will a fully-fledged sequel look like? The mind boggles at the prospect. If I could score a game higher than 100% this would be the one exception.