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Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars – Let There Be Violence on My DS

Posted: February 27th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Nintendo DS | No Comments » I can finally appreciate the finer points of video games on the DS: violence and animal-related deaths! Wait, there's no dog deaths? Well, I can't change the picture now, can I?

When I heard of Grand Theft Auto IV, I said, “Yay! New Liberty City! More Lazlow!”

When I found out that Nintendo DS, the most docile of all the handheld video game consoles, is bringing me the subtext irony of American lifestyles and the game known foremost for its violence and Jack Thompson rants, I said, “Bring it on!”

Grand Theft Auto: Staple Diet for Any Gamer

Grand Theft Auto is a staple of the gaming world. It is a staple, Halo is not. It brought the concept of “open world” to everyone because it merely states its general use: to cause massive chaos amongst virtual citizens without bringing an actual bat to an actual riot. It also managed to capture the grittiness of the crime underworld through its captivating storyline that could be on-par with “The Sopranos”. Its socio-politcal commentary on how life and crime works interdependently is very startling and sometimes, it dwells within the finite lines of ethics and morality, questioning the player, “You paid $42 for violence you can do at home for the price of nothing. Also, why are you killing people?”

The answer to the first one is to bailout gaming companies because they need the money. Ask Lazlow. He lives at Long Island and he needs it to support the drug habit of one “Big Wayne”.

And why are we killing people in a game that seemingly promotes violence and crime? It is because it is a fantasy and parody we cannot live in. It is engaging to us a story that we cannot fathom. We want to drive fast, kill and have sex. All sins that we handsomely buy in a package that costs us $42.

And now, with the DS releasing this franchise into its system, safe to say that Nintendogs can kiss my bottom, Pokemon can go screw it and Cooking Mama can cook the food by herself.

I’m going to be a man, not a pansy.

I’m going to be Asian.

Triads: Cipriani Hated (And Bombed) Them, Johnson Worked With Them, We Get to Play One of Them

In past games, it is either I am killing Triads or I am allying myself with one. It was never I am going to play one. Even if MTA (Multi Theft Auto) had patches that let us play as some stock Asian characters, we never actually experienced protagonists who were Asian. Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars pits you as Huang Lee, a kid from Hong Kong who is in the Triad thanks to his dad, a leader of a Triad tong in Kowloon. Somehow, his dad gets assassinated and he was given the task to present a family “heirloom”, the Yu Jian sword, to his uncle, Wu “Kenny” Lee,  at Liberty City. And according to the Rockstar Games website, Huang Lee came down and what became “a weekend of table services and strippers turns into a dangerous adventure”.


Well, from the character summary, we won’t really get the feel of his character until we get the game first hand. From the picture thusfar, I expect an almost similar feel to a Hong Kong action movie. The intensity of the character and the entire plot of revenge, sounds like a former Grand Theft Auto protagonist. Hmmm… I wonder who…


Well, I don’t really care how much are the plots falling along the lines of revenge and how crappy I have made this picture for comparisons. What I do care is that there are new adventures out there in Liberty City and it’s about damn time we see someone from the Triads rising up the ranks to be here.

This Thing Gave Me Virtual Puppies and A Palm Pilot-ish Feeling

I will not be talking about the features. I will let the review do that. Let’s just talk about the DS shall. The DS is supposed to be a child’s toy. Something that they can toy around with and show it off to their parents, putting their head over the speakers, shouting, “I got bizness call mommy!” This thing that gave us virtual puppies that can never grow old. This thing that teaches us that Professor Layton is a real twat. The system that prides itself on touching (pardon the pun). And now, America is giving its run for its money by releasing this violent game. (Japan has released some ‘adult’ game in the Japanese market… trust me, you do not want to know)

I can never look at this system the same way again once this game is released. I could get PTSD after playing it. I might want to crash someone’s car when I play Mario Kart. I might want to pick up a hooker when I play Harvest Moon. I might want to shoot something when I help Mama in Cooking Mama cook or feed my puppies in Nintendogs. Really, I am worried.

But then again… the DS needs to grow up a bit. Take a look at the Wii. It has one or two violent games. I mean, ‘No More Heroes’ was a prime example of a game attributed to a system intended for families growing up. Its uber violence and its graphic images (and language) makes it very ‘mature’. However, one game cannot define a system. The Wii is still family friendly in terms of the content being hashed out (and somewhat crappy). Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto franchise is not maturing a system but rather bringing a variety to an already exhausted audience. Really, how many times can you play Professor Layton or Cooking Mama before you get pissed off at the characters speaking at such short bursts?

Anyway, it is best for me to end here. I think you should really get Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars for the Nintendo DS if you have a DS. If you don’t, get the PC version of Grand Theft Auto IV. If you are not convinced (which you are not supposed to), I hope the upcoming review of this game will make you change your mind.



Author’s Additional Notes: Expect an actual review of Grand Theft Auto after a few days of the release. It will be in-depth and it will denote the various features within the game.
The author does not condone violence towards animals. He’s just perplexed at Rockstar’s presence on any Nintendo console. Trust me, it was as shocking to find out Dumbledore was gay.

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