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One Week With: Grand Theft Auto V

I can’t believe that six years have passed since GTA V made its debut. I was hooked into the story line, blown away by its next-level graphics, and had never experienced such a robust online ecosystem back in 2013.

Half a decade later, I couldn’t resist double-dipping when I saw the current-generation re-release was £12.49 in the Xbox Store, and I can’t quite believe how well it’s aged.

It’s far from being the best looking game of this console cycle, but the fact that it still looks great whilst not actually looking like much work has gone into upgrading the visuals for this generation, I think that’s a testament to how much juice Rockstar managed to squeeze out of the ageing PS3 and Xbox 360 hardware – especially compared to its predecessor’s gritty and dull exterior.

It’s not without its faults, but I’d file a majority under “niggles.” Having accidentally crossed the train lines at the end of one particular heist, I was unable to activate the cut-scene which depicts Michael and co. jumping aboard the moving train and completing the mission. There’s a few moments like this, where failing to meet an obscure, arbitrary criteria results in a jarring mission failure, but it’s not the end of the world. You’ll jump back in from the previous checkpoint and go again. And hey, at least we don’t have to load the previous save and completely start over!

Driving to a specific location and walking into little yellow markers is often the aim of the game – a staple of the series at this point – but the set-pieces are all action-packed and there’s still an immense level of satisfaction to be had when the three playable characters are working together on a heist, each with their own unique role to play.

After one week with GTA V, I’m about to prepare for the final heist on the Union Depository and I’m just as excited now as I was six years ago. Bring on the money!

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