Grand Theft Auto IV
Grand Theft Auto IV, released on April 29, 2008 in North America is a first person shooter game famous for its real lifelike physics and superb graphics on both the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions. Like many violent video games, the Grand Theft Auto series has been directly linked to acts of adolescent violence in real life.
Despite the games violent nature it is arguably a deconstruction of the typical "glorious crime" game that the original Grand Theft Auto games made highly popular. Throughout the game Niko Bellic is seen to get sucked into a vicious cycle of crime which brings him nothing but misery.
The storyline follows the protagonist, Niko Bellic, an illegal Eastern European immigrant who arrived in Liberty City (fictional New York City look-alike) who arrived off of a ship named the Platypus. His cousin, Roman Bellic, sent him a chain of promising emails over a long period of time talking about his success, his "ladies" and his ownership of a mansion which never existed. He enticed Niko to come to Liberty City to live with him. Due entirely to gambling addiction, Niko is sucked in to the usual world of organized, and sometimes extremely violent crime in an effort to help his cousin pay off his gambling debts, which eventually cause him to be kidnapped, twice. Over the course of the game, he befriends a steroid addict, dates an undercover government agent named Michelle (later revealed to be Karen), does business with affiliates of the Italian and Russian Mafias, befriends a homosexual under attack from bullies, and even has the option of carrying out assassinations for a man from Texas named "The Fixer".
Side missions unlocked over the course of the game include drug dealing, vigilante criminal killings, assassinations, illegal street racing, and hanging out with friends (characters introduced over the course of the game who Niko befriends).
Crimes that must be committed in the in game world, as usual, include speeding, assault, murder and drug trafficking. Heroic missions such as fire fighting and paramedic missions seen in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas are removed.