Jimquisition: Will Grand Theft Auto V Have No Balls?

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beetrain:
Just what I've been thinking about lately. I'm sick of seeing SR vs GTA threads when they can both be enjoyed for different reasons.
Also, I fucking love Jim's expressive face.

Yeah. I know I prefer Saints Row over GTA, but I know those who prefer GTA over saints Row. However both are out there so why argue over the best? Why not cherish what makes those two games different and what makes each game great?

Jim Sterling:
Will Grand Theft Auto V Have No Balls?

Grand Theft Auto IV turned the GTA series into something more serious and dark, removing a lot of the ribald humor and outrageous gameplay. Some have said this caused the series to get too tame, and have already complained that GTA V's trailer hints at more of the same. So, has GTA lost its balls? Will GTA V be tame? Does it matter? Let the Jimquisition form your opinion for you!

Watch Video

JQ, while I agree in spirit with your argument here, there's a few notes I wanted to add. One of the biggest drawbacks to GTA4 was that it seemed like a huge downgrade from the open-world view of San Andreas. We loyal R* fans buy into the game expecting at the least some of the better features from the previous game and in the end are handed a brown bag with the shit we didn't want, and then they smear that shit in our face every time the cell phone rings.
Car customization, gone. Airplanes, gone. Helicopters that were actually FUN to fly, gone. Cool clothing customization, GONE! Annoying "date" requests, not removed and if anything amped the fuck up in annoyance factor.
Also, Liberty City's changes from the original map I can understand a little bit of, but I wonder why they removed the Dam, which would have been a pretty cool landmark to keep in game.
I actually felt that the 2 DLC stories were much better than the main story.
Also, one other thing... the map itself seemed large but empty, devoid of color and flavor... I felt myself getting lost because the blurry buildings all looked the same.

Well, what about that? The last few weeks I always thought that the Jimquisition made valid points (not always entirely new, but valid) but this week, something was wrong.

And that was his mention of Red Dead Redemption.
The main character of that game was a mentally five-year old, unlikeable, irresponsible, egocentric sociopathic fuckwit. I could have enjoyed the game, had not John F. Marston messed it all up with his whining and bitching, paired with an almost aggressively stupid ignorance of the misery of the people around him because he was so sunken in his own (uninteresting) fate.
He single-handedly fucks over (sorry, there is no other word for that) a torn country by fighting for both sides simultaneously, then acts all surprised when one side "betrays" him and so he "joins" (har, har) the other side, killing thousands of people in the process, all just because he wants to shoot one single guy. Way to go.
And furthermore, the guy is a tool. EVERY SINGLE PERSON he encounters on his travels has something for him to do, be it feeding them breakfast or shooting their grandmother, and he groans and bitches and whines and then he STILL does it. And when he finally got his wife back, she just bitchslaps him and he DOESN'T EVEN FUCKING COMPLAIN. And the game is not over, which is even worse.
This is NOT good storytelling. John Marston was the first character I ever played which I badly wanted to die at the end of the game. And it was a shame, in a way, because there were a bunch of interesting topics and plot points, which were all ruined by either John "Cry me a river" Marston, one of his entourage of dickheads or the failed attempt to include some "funny lines" (I'm looking at you, Irish).
And while all this angsty, whiny, cringeworthy drama is going on in the brackground, we can shoot people and wildlife, play a variety of uninteresting games, shoot criminals, pick flowers, kill people in duels and most importantly MURDER DUDES.
John Marston is a sociopath, and even worse, a narcisstic sociopath.
And because the game tried to be gritty, "realistic" and even laughably political at times, the aforementioned non-cutscene bits seemed weirdly out of place, because we know that Johnnyboy is a tool and a bitch, despite his cool pose while he shoots another dude who (rightfully) accuses him of cheating at poker.

And then we have Saints Row II. A game which at first glance does offer one thing and one thing only: pure, mindless, genocidal fun or to paraphrase Benjamin Sebastian Y. Godzilla Croshaw, a game in which you play someone resembling a Batman villain.
This character, despite being modeled by the player (including his VOICE) was (because he looked like me, I guess, but not just because of that) far, far more likeable than J. "abuse me" Marston, because his actions had consistency. He was not a tool, he made other people his tool and, of course, used a lot of rather deadly tools.
And Saints Row II did another thing, a thing which only games can really do: it build up an atmosphere, a setting, a scene and by that, it made some very satirical, one could even say scathing comments on society in general and American society in particular.
But it did not interfere with the fun. You can romp through the game, mindlessly slaughtering Ronin minions, but if you want to think, there is enough you can think about. Topics range from the different aesthetics of the Barrio and the Suburb up to the question why all these people join you and the role Ultor plays.
And by giving emphasis to the characters rather than the presentation of overused clichéd bullshit in the cutscenes, the fates of SR IIs characters got to me more than those of the bleak puppets of RDR.

So I have to say, apparently Rockstar haven't lost their balls, because from what I saw and you said, they are still licking them like madmend and sell us the fluid, thinking it is the greatest thing in the history of mankind.

I thought the GTA stories have always been terrible, including 4.

Anyway, I started on this video because I thought that he was going to talk about the rumors of a female lead. Never mind, then.

I might give Saints Row 3 a try then. GTA4, Red Dead Redemption, and LA Noire had pretty poor stories. All very well and good to try and add depth to a game, but Rockstar ain't BioWare. Not by a long chalk. Conrad Verner was there for about 0.1% of Mass Effect, Shepard didn't have to go fucking bowling with him.

edit: I liked LA Noire btw, the individual cases were well played but the overarching story detracted from the experience and took the player away from the most interesting aspect of the game i.e. the homicide cases

I still maintain that GTA4 would have been perfect if they had done the exact same writing, game-world programming, &c., that they did with the final product, but kept the color palette and play controls (or at least, the driving mechanics) from the earlier games. If they hadn't felt the need to use visual shorthand to say, "No, really, we're doing something Mature™ and Deep™ this time," and simply used the colorful platform to tell the intricate and meaningful story that they wound up telling.

Heck, they wouldn't even have needed to remove the "grit" theme, just have the dirt be layered across more colorful objects. It could have been an artistic statement in itself; the bright and colorful fantasy of the American Dream getting tarnished by the degradation of reality. And had more colorful neon lights at nighttime.

(of course, I also think that GTA4's game engine... with the combat removed, obviously... could make a kickass Harvest Moon game)

So basically, with GTA and Saint's Row, it's like having your cake, and eating it, too.

ConjurerOfChaos:
And that was his mention of Red Dead Redemption.
The main character of that game was a mentally five-year old, unlikeable, irresponsible, egocentric sociopathic fuckwit. I could have enjoyed the game, had not John F. Marston messed it all up with his whining and bitching, paired with an almost aggressively stupid ignorance of the misery of the people around him because he was so sunken in his own (uninteresting) fate.
He single-handedly fucks over (sorry, there is no other word for that) a torn country by fighting for both sides simultaneously, then acts all surprised when one side "betrays" him and so he "joins" (har, har) the other side, killing thousands of people in the process, all just because he wants to shoot one single guy. Way to go.
And furthermore, the guy is a tool. EVERY SINGLE PERSON he encounters on his travels has something for him to do, be it feeding them breakfast or shooting their grandmother, and he groans and bitches and whines and then he STILL does it. And when he finally got his wife back, she just bitchslaps him and he DOESN'T EVEN FUCKING COMPLAIN. And the game is not over, which is even worse.
This is NOT good storytelling. John Marston was the first character I ever played which I badly wanted to die at the end of the game. And it was a shame, in a way, because there were a bunch of interesting topics and plot points, which were all ruined by either John "Cry me a river" Marston, one of his entourage of dickheads or the failed attempt to include some "funny lines" (I'm looking at you, Irish).
And while all this angsty, whiny, cringeworthy drama is going on in the brackground, we can shoot people and wildlife, play a variety of uninteresting games, shoot criminals, pick flowers, kill people in duels and most importantly MURDER DUDES.
John Marston is a sociopath, and even worse, a narcisstic sociopath.
And because the game tried to be gritty, "realistic" and even laughably political at times, the aforementioned non-cutscene bits seemed weirdly out of place, because we know that Johnnyboy is a tool and a bitch, despite his cool pose while he shoots another dude who (rightfully) accuses him of cheating at poker.

So, you didn't pay attention at all to the game's story, did you? You know why Marston is working for both sides in Mexico? Because both sides promise that they can get him Bill, which is all he wants. Why does he want Bill? Because John is all kinds of bad things? No! Maybe it's because some corrupt government agents kidnapped his family and are threatening to kill them if he doesn't do what they ask. Yes, damn you John, you miserable piece of trash, how dare you care about your family's safety! And then you say that the game doesn't end when you find is family and that it's not good storytelling? It's damn great storytelling. The point of all the family missions at the end of the game is to drive home the point that this is what John has been working towards all this time. He's not just some nutjob running around killing people because what else is he going to do with his time like Tommy Vercetti or the Saints Row character. He's just some guy who wants to give up his old gangster life and try to do right by his family, and that's the point of all those missions at the end of the game. It's damn good storytelling, and you not wanting to see the point of something doesn't change that.

And then you claim he was cheating at poker. I don't know what mission you played, but in the mission I played, he certainly was not cheating at poker. And even if he had been (which he wasn't), what would you have preferred happen? Would you have liked it better if John had just said "Yep, I was cheating, go ahead and kill me. It's cool." and then the game ends right there? Now that would be bad storytelling.

My problem with GTA isn't that it's getting tame. My problem is that the controls are ass.

Postal had more balls than any of em.

ACman:
I didn't have a problem with GTA4s lack of stupidity. I just din't want to have to go to boring titty bars, out to lunch, bowling, play pool or fly Brucie around the city with his sluts du jour.

Then why did you? Aside from a very few missions, you can pretty much hang up and cancel on all your "friends" with little consequence. The only friend worth sucking up to is Little Jacob, and you still don't even need to take him out all that much. Do his side jobs of delivering drugs and bam, mobile gun store for you. Roman is also useful if you want free taxis, but as he's your cousin, it's super easy to suck up to him. Everyone else can pretty much be ignored if you want because they don't have interesting benefits. Depending on how much story you care about, you might miss interesting tidbits during the driving conversations on those little going out with friends events, but you can still safely ignore them and not miss anything super important.

Point is, if you want to play GTA IV without going out with Niko's friends, then play it without going out with his friends. It's very rarely forced upon you.

You know what? You've changed my mind Jim. You're right, RDR and LA Noire were better for their more serious take, and GTAIV did give me a lot to think about. I didn't have as much fun with the gameplay as Saint's Row, but the story was pretty good, if a little depressing at times. If they can make the gameplay as engaging as RDR and get rid of the "Niko it's your cazan" crap, it'll hopefully turn out just as well.

Thanks.

.. Won't even ask how he managed to get that 'weapon' near the end of the video at- I was shocked he would even dare wield it. But then that made me realize... if one game doesn't cut it for you to be taken seriously, why not get a game that does get serious like Grand Theft Auto 5? That way, you can know the true harshness of the underworld while in SR2 (or 3), you can goof off while having the time of your life being immature.

A lot of games learned this concept from Call of Duty, but rather from the maturity of it, they learned how to make first person shooters that more thrilling. Or at least the functions make it look simply amazing in truth. Ether way, I admire Jim being honest. Well, he may of been to honest by stroking his 'weapon' at the end encouraging his point. I'm fine, thanks for offering anyhow *smiles awkwardly*

First Jimquisition I've ever seen.

It's a pretty good first impression.

It doesn't really matter that GTA has matured (haha, what a funny concept, just wounding with your gun is somehow more mature than killing). They are abandoning the niche that made them famous, but the market works so that the void left behind would be filled by somebody. I don't care who fills it. As a matter of fact, I would hope that it got filled by somebody more talented than either company.

I admit, the giant dildo (which according to my spell checker, apparently isn't a word) prop, caught me by surprise, damn that was funny ^^

Saints Row 2 seemed tedious and monotonous to me so I don't know if I should get the 3rd.

I still miss the chiansaws and flamethrowers from San Andreas, and I really wish they'd come back.

Great video, Jim. Red Dead Redemption was actually my first intro a Rockstar game and I loved it because it genuinely surprised me at how mature it was.
And I could still ride like the wind being chased by deputies with about four teeth between them :P

I was going to ask where in the blue hell you got that.... thing.... but I think it's one of those times I'm going to leave well enough alone....

he's definitely right about Saints Row 2 filling the immature gap left by GTA 4. It's also my favourite of the 2 as well. It's also why I probably wont bother with GTA 5 and instead just buy Saints Row 3.

Okay, did Volition give you that amazingly long dildo, or what? :P

Jesus, when will someone give this guy a proper set instead of those sheets he hangs from the wall. That's just dreadful.

Damn, now I have to go out and buy a giant purple dildo with a sword hilt,.. I'm not actually sure why but I have to have one.

Good job Jim, I completely agree that a nice dark storyline is appreciated but if my cousin s*cks the way Roman does I just want to shoot him in the face or mabye just want to leave him alone and have some fun without him or beat him up with a giant dildo baseball bat.

Well I'm glad I'm just like you Jim. I loved the GTA games I own (San Andreas, GTA4) and I also love Saints Row 1 and 2. Hoping to see both series continue on being very enjoyable.

Sure, I'm glad the genre can move in both directions. But I think as long as you can go to a mission marker on a map with no idea what you're volunteering for and come out with a mission from which you cannot advance the story until you kill a dozen people, the "moral" trappings of GTA are going to remain somewhat laughable. (Yes, I know there were missions that enabled you to choose a merciful route in GTA IV, but they were far in the minority.)

Melon Hunter:

Daystar Clarion:
Is this video freezing for anyone else at 1:45?

Yeah, view it in standard quality for the rest of it.

And that's actually an interesting point; having never played GTA IV, I never realised the direction the series had taken. I'm intrigued as to what Rockstar will do with GTA V.

I'd rather not. I'd prefer that it work in high quality, thank you. :\

Suppose I'll come back and watch this tomorrow!

mjc0961:

Point is, if you want to play GTA IV without going out with Niko's friends, then play it without going out with his friends. It's very rarely forced upon you.

Well apart from taking them out for their witty repatie I didn't do it for any gameplay value. The stories told through the dialogue during these tasks was fairly interesting but it was kind of galling to have to go see Ricky Gervais for the tenth time.

MY point is that you could have a realistic adult narrative without wasting time on these features. Put in something fun like boat/helicopter races with Brucie, or saving your "cuzzin" from more loan sharks or strip club bouncers, or random mini bank robberies with your Irish mates, or playing backup for the Jamacians during Random drug/weapon deals.

Callate:
Sure, I'm glad the genre can move in both directions. But I think as long as you can go to a mission marker on a map with no idea what you're volunteering for and come out with a mission from which you cannot advance the story until you kill a dozen people, the "moral" trappings of GTA are going to remain somewhat laughable. (Yes, I know there were missions that enabled you to choose a merciful route in GTA IV, but they were far in the minority.)

Not to mention the still-existing gap between cutscenes and gameplay.

Actually, this may get worse with the hype we get from the trailer.

A lot of players actually act like sociopaths within the game. Trying to be more nuanced means you're actively betraying the narrative if you play the sandbox in a certain way. This looks like it's a guy who thought he was out and gets pulled back in. Great, except is that the kind of guy who would rob random folks on the street?

This kind of annoyed me about RDR, too. No matter your characters actions, the same chain of events happen. And that wouldn't be so bad, except you're a man seeking redemption FFS. Ignore the fact that Marston's threatening to kill people every other line of the dialogue for 3/4s the game, you can play an utterly unrelenting psychopath, murder everyone under the sun, lie cheat and steal, and still develop as a hero on a path towards redemption.

I still loved the game, mind. I still loved the story. Doesn't mean I can't see its flaws.

Saints Row 2 kind of did the opposite. You are unequivocally the bad guy, and the narrative reflects that. It at least is fairly story light, character development light, etc., but it's still sort of the same problem. Defining characters in a certain way in one part of the game and not the rest is kind of annoying.

Of course, in SR2, there isn't much you can do in the game where you'd come off as the good guy. There's plenty you can do in RDR where you come off as the bad guy, and they'll have to really pare down the GTA world if they want us to play a guy who was forced back in and not be able to completely defy the character.

Of course, they're obviously not opposed to stripping elements, so maybe that will happen. Maybe they'll go the Hideo Kojima route, so our gameplay won't ruin their narrative.

Would anyone have felt disappointment if Jim didn't rub the bat at the end?

OT: I'm indifferent to both games, to be honest.

I played Saints Row II and I felt an immense sense of disgust, with the only part of me enjoying that was running over people to Boy George's "Karma Chameleon" being the highlight.

I played GTA IV and had an immense sense of Boredom, the gameplay was so not my cup of tea that all it made me wish was that GTA's Vice City, San Andreas and III would get the HD Treatment.

That doesn't mean I don't enjoy those kinds of games: I enjoyed Manhunt for all the horrible violence I can do, Bully for all the silly yet horrible things I can do, Red Dead Redemption for being a desperado, and L.A. Noire for all the good things I can do.

Can't explain it, but when it's not an open world sandbox with running over people as the option, I can play it. When I am allowed to do it, I prefer not to. Strange.

Either way, great video Jim.

SteelStallion:

Aureliano:
Man, I'm relieved to hear that things with outlandish dick jokes can't also be intelligent bits of satire and humor. Otherwise it might be possible for this very show to have intelligent criticism. But luckily for everyone, SR2 was clearly not thoughtful or interesting at all aside from just being wacky.

Thank God for Jim indeed. Now I can go back to playing Bach Bach Revolution on my piano with a metronome while sawing off my testicles. No fun ever needs to invade my life with all the thinking going on in it!

[F'ing /SARCASM]

No one said it can't, it certainly can. But it doesn't. SR2 is not thoughtful or intelligent. It's definitely satirical, and I guess you could think about it being sort of intelligent in that way, but there is a clear difference between how GTA 4 presents itself and how SR 2 presents itself. The Jimquisition is satirical and features dick jokes, but it can also be thoughtful and intelligent, and it does.

I don't know what boiled up all that fiery rage. He wasn't ragging on SR2 or anything.

Also, I don't want to inquire as to how and why Jim got a giant purple dildo, but I'm certainly curious.

Bit of suggestive ending bit there, Jim.

SR2 is smart in the way it constructs a coherent world out of its wacky chaos, and flawed but human characters who the player can empathize with much more than most of the game's competitors because of how much sense their decisions ultimately make in context.

My bile is because I respect Jim as a humorist and he's been severely dropping the ball this last few weeks. He's a smart guy, but without some generally funny jokes his show is getting boring.

To suggest that the attitude of SR2 is immature and something to be cast off as one gets their act together suggests he believes the same about his show. When all the zaniness is gone from the Jimquisition, I will not watch it anymore. It will simply cease to be any fun, which is the only thing I ultimately want from games and gaming news/journalism in the first place.

I was stopped liking gta after Vice City. So naturally I loved Saints Row when it came out.

What, has this fellow never said the word "B-b-BAWLLS" before? (pron.: "balls") And has he really got no idea how to speak with any kind of rhythm? "Yes-- I am the Jimquisition-- -- -- and -- I am here - to talk a--bout my weight issues" You'd think that after making a dozen or more videos he might have stumbled upon some kind of confidence and comfort infront of a camera but apparently not. It's like half way between each word he gets caught staring at his eyes in the camera lens and forgets where the f*ck he is. It's like he's the G-Man without the intel. Lol it's like I'm the non-dumbass Yahtzee of The Escapist's British video feature staff - dissing without mercy!

Also, while I'm ranting-- another sardonic Briton? Poor form, Escapist... Hey, I'm pretty sure I can do a passable british accent - I'm from the Commonwealth afterall (know what that is?) - so if I promise to speak Brit and be opinionated can I have a paid video series on your website? I'll call it "Richapanionation in-ur-face" and it will be SCATHING!

SCAAATHINGGGGGG

>rant over< (gosh these features with british narration really bring something deep and evil out of me)

He makes it sound like GTA 2, 3, VC and SA were Saint's Row cousins - that's BS. Those games had a strong sense of, if not maturity, than at least a sensible approach to it's gameplay (excluding a few missions in each title) and the honest truth underneath all of his steamy toilet-seed is that GTA IV was just a bad game, a bad iteration of the series, which failed miserably at capturing the highs of previous titles because the developers were too preoccupied with getting the colour scheme just right. Belic wasn't a bad guy trying to do good (and if he was then it was nothing new - why does Big Jim act like San Andreas never existed?) he was just a bland character navigating a swamp of characters intended to inject GTA'ish zane into the series. (How can you say his dumbass cousin, or that gym rat, were not outrageously stupid and uncouth on the same level as the porn star in VC?)

Surely San Andreas was the game to take the series in a new direction? A Black character, a much more interesting storyline, a much longer game and much less outright comedy? Helping a farmer you just met burn his pot may have been an absurd situation but you were doing it for a reason, and I personally preferred the classic rock radio channel to the over-the-top talk radio comedy that i had loved so much from previous titles. San Andreas was the first post-modern GTA title (modern being the 3D but restricted and linear GTA 3 and VC, post-modern SA brought new elements and layers of complexity to the formula), GTA IV was the first CRAPPY GTA title.

EDIT:

"Was that burn?"
"I think that was a burn."
"You just got burned."
"Burrrnnnnn"
"buu-hu-huuurrrnnn lolzers"

Use_Imagination_here:
Great video as allways. Wont be getting gta v, but it was intresting to learn about.

Same here.

The "criminal sandbox" game has never really appealed to me. In the couple of hours I spent with GTA IV I saw the potential for me to enjoy it, though I found myself unable to connect with the story. Because the game allowed me as the player to make Nico behave like sociopath, I was unable to empathize with him when the more serious story stuff happened.

On the other hand, I loved Red Dead Redemption. One of my favorite games of all time. They toned down the player freedom just a bit and framed the story in such a way that you could play John Marston as a noble outlaw or a ruthless outlaw and it worked.

But yeah, I won't be buying GTA V. If Rockstar makes more games like Red Dead Redemption, I'll be on board.

You mirror my thoughts exactly Jim

BTW, Jim, you've got balls of steel

did anyone else think he'd end the video after he said thank god for giant purple dicks? hahahaha

OT: it was a good point. the people who are banging on about GTA being too tame forget one thing. It's the developers game. Not yours the developers. they'll make any game that they think suits both them and the product. and it'll be great. too many self entitled shits struggle to get this.

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