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Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time | Rev Up the Excitement

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It’s a thrilling period for fans of the Grand Theft Auto series. Rockstar has recently officially stated that they are actively developing Grand Theft Auto (GTA) 6. If you’re feeling nostalgic and want to reminisce about the series, we’ve decided to rank all the GTA games, from the least to the best. It’s highly likely that the top-ranked Grand Theft Auto game is the one you have in mind. The series has gone through significant transformations, evolving from a 2D top-down game into one of the gaming world’s most extensive and immersive experiences. Let’s dive right in.

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Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time

Ranking Best GTA Games of All Time
1 Grand Theft Auto V (GTA Online)
2 Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
3 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
4 Grand Theft Auto III
5 Grand Theft Auto II
6 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
7 Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
8 Grand Theft Auto IV
9 Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
10 Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto (GTA)

Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time | Grand Theft Auto - KreedOn
Image Source: GameSpot

In 1998, DMA Design, the precursor to Rockstar, released the groundbreaking Grand Theft Auto, often considered the game that initiated the series. This title introduced players to a world of criminal escapades, centered around stealing vehicles and navigating a bustling city while striving to evade law enforcement. The game’s perspective was top-down, a departure from later entries in the series. Although it didn’t receive unanimous critical acclaim, it achieved substantial sales success. Its fundamental concepts, allowing players to assume the role of a criminal in an expansive open world with boundless freedom, resonated strongly with fans.

Grand Theft Auto (GTA): Liberty City Stories

Image Source: GameSpot

In 2009, Grand Theft Auto (GTA) introduced Liberty City Stories, which serves as a prequel to GTA III, originally launched for the PSP. This installment is notable for marking the series’ first foray into three-dimensional gaming on a portable console. Set within Liberty City, this game was carefully crafted to harness the capabilities of the PSP’s hardware. In our assessment at the time, we commended the title for successfully incorporating the elements that made the larger GTA games so memorable.

The narrative revolves around Tony Cipriani, a mobster striving to establish his reputation in the criminal underworld. Staying true to the franchise’s tradition, Liberty City Stories offers non-linear, open-ended gameplay, with a primary focus on immediate action.

In summary, our review noted that Liberty City Stories was a technical marvel for its ability to encapsulate much of the GTA console experience within a handheld gaming package.

Grand Theft Auto IV

Image Source: GameSpot

In 2009, Grand Theft Auto IV (GTA 4), the highly anticipated sequel to GTA: San Andreas from 2008, received widespread acclaim upon its release for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 platforms. This game introduced a more realistic portrayal of Liberty City, a metropolis modeled after New York City. Its vast and immersive open world left players awestruck, offering them greater freedom to explore on a grander scale.

The game’s narrative centered around Nico Bellic, an immigrant struggling to establish a new life in America. GameSpot, a prominent gaming publication, awarded GTA 4 a perfect score of 10/10 and recognized it as one of the best games of 2008. Beyond its captivating single-player campaign, GTA 4 laid the foundation for GTA Online with its own multiplayer mode, enabling players to engage in fierce battles or collaborative adventures in an online setting. This strategic move would prove to be immensely successful for GTA Online in the years that followed.

Additionally, GTA 4 introduced innovative cover-based mechanics, a gameplay feature that Rockstar would later incorporate into titles such as Red Dead Redemption and GTA 5. Furthermore, GTA 4 marked a pivotal moment in the franchise’s evolution by implementing decision-making systems that had a direct impact on the storyline.

Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars

Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time | Grand Theft Auto - KreedOn
Image Source: GameSpot

In 2009, Rockstar embarked on a different path with GTA: Chinatown Wars, marking a significant departure from their usual approach. This Nintendo DS and later PSP game was a pioneering endeavor designed exclusively for portable devices. Notably, it leveraged the unique capabilities of the DS, incorporating the touchscreen and second screen to present an experience unparalleled by any previous GTA title.

Chinatown Wars returns players to the familiar setting of Liberty City, casting them in the role of Huang Lee, a member of the Triad gang. Departing from convention, the game introduced a distinctive cel-shaded art style and a top-down perspective reminiscent of the franchise’s early days.

At GameSpot, we held Chinatown Wars in high regard, commending it for its ability to transcend the limitations of a portable GTA title. Instead of feeling like a watered-down version, it stood as a substantial and innovative addition to the series, pushing boundaries with fresh features.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories

Image Source: GameSpot

In 2006, a prequel to Vice City, titled Vice City Stories, was initially released for the PSP before making its way to the PlayStation 2 the subsequent year. This installment is set in 1984, two years prior to the events of Vice City, and it revolves around the journey of Victor “Vic” Vance as he strives to establish a criminal empire in Vice City. Many critics noted significant enhancements in Vice City Stories when compared to its predecessor, particularly in terms of injecting more personality into the game.

It provided players with another enjoyable adventure filled with the freedom to create chaos. In our review at the time, we acknowledged that Vice City Stories didn’t introduce groundbreaking innovations to the GTA series, but it adeptly translated the trademark GTA experience into a portable format.

Grand Theft Auto II

Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time | Grand Theft Auto - KreedOn
Image Source: GameSpot

In 1999, GTA II continued the legacy of the original 1997 game, immersing players in a fictional city where their primary objective was to create chaos and havoc. Displayed from a top-down viewpoint, GTA II maintained the same format as its predecessor. Unlike today, when Rockstar places a significant emphasis on storytelling, GTA II transported players to a simpler time, where they assumed the role of an aspiring young criminal with a relentless desire to engage in wanton acts of violence and destruction.

The graphical quality of GTA II saw noticeable enhancements, rendering vehicles and other in-game elements more visually appealing. Moreover, the camera system underwent refinements, and a multiplayer mode was introduced, enabling up to six players to engage in competitive gameplay on specially designed maps. GTA II marked a significant turning point for the franchise, as it paved the way for subsequent releases to transition into a 3D open-world format.

Grand Theft Auto III

Image Source: GameSpot

In 2001, Grand Theft Auto III represented a significant departure for the franchise, then in development at DMA Design. This installment marked the series’ transition from the 2D top-down perspectives of its earlier games to a fully realized 3D world. It was set in a fictional rendition of New York City known as Liberty City, garnering praise for its pioneering shift toward a more ambitious open-world environment and non-linear gameplay.

Grand Theft Auto III had a profound and far-reaching impact on the gaming industry, ushering in an era of non-linear, open-ended sandbox games that have since become ubiquitous. Notably, the game featured an astonishing variety and quantity of in-game activities, an exceptional soundtrack that even included an original comedy channel called Chatterbox, and it represented the franchise’s initial venture into enlisting Hollywood talent for voice acting, with notable actors like Samuel L. Jackson and Michael Madsen contributing their voices to the game.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

Image Source: GameSpot

“Vice City, released in 2002, emerged just one year after the launch of GTA III, transporting players to the year 1986 within the vibrant backdrop of Vice City, a Miami-inspired setting. The game’s narrative revolved around the exploits of Tommy Verceitti, drawing clear inspiration from iconic works like Scarface and the television series Miami Vice. Rockstar Games elevated the open-world, non-linear gameplay structure introduced in GTA III, enriching it with expanded features, systems, and the introduction of fresh abilities, items, and mechanics.

Vice City earned the distinction of being one of the “most stylish and enjoyable games ever released.” Notably, it stands as one of the limited GTA titles that ventures into a historical setting, leaving many to speculate about when Rockstar might revisit a bygone era for a future GTA installment.”

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

Top 10 Best GTA Games Of All Time | Grand Theft Auto - KreedOn
Image Source: GameSpot

In 2004, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas earns a prominent spot on our ranking due to its innovative open-world design, a pioneering feature at the time of its release on the PlayStation 2 and Xbox platforms. This game unfolds in an expansive, Los Angeles-inspired open world, immersing players in the persona of Carl “CJ” Johnson. San Andreas distinguished itself from its predecessors by eliminating loading screens between various locations, introducing swimming mechanics, incorporating an RPG-style system where character weight fluctuated based on eating habits, and necessitating exercise to maintain a fit physique.

Furthermore, it presented a visually stunning world brimming with diverse activities. In our contemporaneous review, we acknowledged that when a game attempts to encompass a multitude of different elements, it can risk dilution. However, San Andreas manages to consistently excel and delivers an exceptionally robust gaming experience.

Grand Theft Auto V (GTA Online)

Image Source: GameSpot

Grand Theft Auto V earns its top spot due to its exceptional design, storytelling, and technical prowess. Launched in 2013, this game has proven its enduring popularity, largely thanks to the enduring success of its GTA Online multiplayer mode. What sets this installment apart within the series is its innovative narrative structure, as it introduces three distinct protagonists: Michael, Trevor, and Franklin. Each character hails from a unique background and brings their own perspectives and gameplay experiences, ensuring a consistently engaging and diverse gaming journey.

Furthermore, the storylines converge in a satisfying manner. The game unfolds in a fictitious rendition of Los Angeles known as Los Santos and its neighboring region, Blaine County. Within this expansive world, players discover a vibrant, dynamic environment filled with countless activities, places to explore, and a diverse array of characters to encounter.

Conclusion

The GTA Online mode presents an abundant virtual playground teeming with diverse quests and activities, including heists, races, PvP encounters, and numerous other challenges. This remarkable phenomenon known as GTA V released on March 2022, gracing the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S with enhanced visuals and an overall improved gaming experience. Remarkably, this marks the third generation of consoles for the game, a testament to its enduring popularity, as it continues to dominate the best-seller charts month after month.


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