Any form of critique is appreciated, as I'm just posting on here so it's easy for me to combine it all later on as well as to improve!
GTA V ANALYSIS/REVIEW
Longevity and interest
Let's start with the basics: This game is long. It's almost unheard of to hear of games coming out that have 100+ hours of single-player content out of the box. This game does. That might be because for most missions (of which there are a whopping 75) you have to drive a bunch. The fact that you have to drive a bunch is assisted by the fact that the playable area is enormous. You have a GPS-system (just like in previous Grand Theft Auto's) that shows you how far left until your destination. A mile in this game, is an ACTUAL mile. I would've liked to see it be able to be changed to KMs, as that is the obvious superior way to count distance, but I digress. The game is huge as a result of the big amount of missions, but also because of the fact that you have to drive so much. This, surprisingly, doesn't get that boring though. You can opt to use a taxi a lot of the time if it DOES bore you, but I deliberately didn't. I liked trying out the various different vehicle models in the game, getting into interesting situations with the police etcetera. It was good fun!
Outside of the driving, every mission is interesting and is in the beginning driven by the introduction of a new mechanic (swimming, using a plane, driving and shooting at the same time, you get the idea!) and later on just a gigantic clusterf**k. So many unrealistic but fun things happen, it is a blast and you'll be facepalming more than once. This is how the game keeps the player interested and it's worked very well on me.
The world itself
The world outside of the main missions in GTA V is interesting. I heard someone say they might as well have called it ''(slightly unrealistic) real life simulator'' and it could've passed. You can do SO MANY THINGS outside of main missions. Shop for some clothes, go golfing, play some tennis or relax and do some yoga. If you call a hooker she will go and ''pleasure'' you (this was a feature in older GTA's too however) and the world is just really alive. You can see police randomly shooting at a gang sometimes, and if you happen to steal a car from some gang member, their friends will be sure to chase you down (at least for a while!) The game has a lot of elements that make it feel very unscripted, random, and interesting. It makes you want to just walk around and BE in Los Santos. Radio stations are packed with funny and sarcastic talkshows, (old) music and is just fun to listen to. Some songs do get repetitive though. But there's always an option for you to add your own music and radio station!
You can even shoot down small birds that (seem like) they just belong to the scenery. It's all really immersive that way.
One kind of annoying thing: Every person that is in their car that you aim a gun at, immediately accelerates and drives away (instead of someone putting their hands up and stepping out of the car). This makes catching a car very hard unless you either headshot them and are not in range of the car hitting you after the person is dead or shocked, or if you stand next to the car and literally force the person out without using a gun. I might just be nitpicking here though!
I chose to give the cops their own little part in this write-up, considering the improvements they've made over GTA IV, specifically when it comes to the mechanics they've changed and added.
The police are much more responsive and sometimes when you kill someone you immediately get a wanted star. This can be a bit annoying, especially when there's no police to be seen. This is because someone around you has called 9-1-1 and the police are alerted that way. Pretty cool!
The police surrounds you much more but you have a chance to think ahead as they're mostly (on lower warning levels) quite ways off and you can hide in an alley, behind something, on top of a building, or get another car and hide. You can also duck (pressing X) in your car to decrease the chance of you being seen.
When you stop being in their sight, you can see where they are searching and their ''field of view'', which is good because it means you can actively avoid those in order to escape. After about half a minute of searching, they give up and you're free to go.
I've had plenty of amusing and interesting chase scenes, as well as completely getting shredded because I took too many cops on without enough weapons/protection. I especially love throwing C4 at cars and then riding off while I press the explode button. <3
Now this is a bit of a special section because technically they're just missions, but considering they're in multiplayer too and they return a couple of times in the game, it's good to talk about.
Heists work like this: You pick either option A or B to get to a certain goal. (Usually a stealth and a brute-force ''way'' is possible.) You get the items necessary for the goal (a getaway car, a truck, etc) and you pick your extra crew. The better they are, the more % of the cut they are going to be getting. If you skimp on your gunman, you get more money in the end but you might endanger yourself and lose potential dough just because he was in the way/died/didn't do his job.
Then the heist starts and it's ''supposed to'' go as planned. Obviously, this doesn't always happen and the story makes it so that the characters improvise and find a way out.
Heists were VERY fun in my opinion. They can be made challenging by changing how good your mercenaries are, they're all unique and explosive. They really are the highlight of Los Santos' single player experience in my opinion.
As the last topic I want to mention from the gameplay part, is your phone. It's been present especially in GTA IV before and has a decent impact here. The characters have 90% of the conversations over phone and you can read and reply to emails over phone too. Also, you can check the stock market (which is actually pretty stale, unless you do a mission where you assassinate a target that makes the stock price drop or go skyhigh), go on various websites (which are really just one page, but still, the idea's there!), order vehicles, etcetera. It's a big hub and the phone is very handy to use!
I don't want to completely skimp on the technical part though.
GPU: GTX 970
CPU: i5 4670
RAM: 8GB @ 1333Mhz
Ran the game fine at 60-90FPS outside (the hardest part to run, obviously) with small dips during very performance hitting scenes with everthing on max and MSAA off, as well as the extra settings (which hit performance incredibly hard.) I had no problems whatsoever with loading times. Only when you start the game up does it take pretty long, after that it's completely fine.
The menu for some reason is 30FPS though which makes it feel VERY weird compared to the actual game, which is not framelocked.
The game was very impressive, especially when it first loaded up. With all the hype behind Watch_Dogs, this was SO MUCH BETTER and you felt it from the start. The game has so much immersion in it, especially the open world that makes it feel so free. I have had SOME small points where I was disappointed with freedom (like trying to enter Michael's house as Franklin at the start of the day) but overall that shouldn't harm the experience. There are multiple ways to do a lot of missions which make the game feel so much less linear and really does the experience very good.
On top of that the game is graphically impressive if you've got the power for it and it looks just great, especially if you take the time to appreciate it. It's a huge world they've created, and with PC it really shines.
A first-person view of Los Santos: