It’s an odd thing, the Lost and Damned, because in my opinion it surpasses GTA IV. A game which was better off in a small package, or a shorter story span, at first seems to have been completely done this way when you open this DLC. What Lost and Damned does, what GTA IV failed to do, is give you freedom. More freedom, not revolutionary, it’s still tethered to the main problems of the main game but its fixed. That’s all I wanted and now in less than two weeks, it’s going to be fixed again. So lets take a look back on The Lost And Damned and let me show you just how awesome it is.
This time round, you play the role of Johnny Klebtiz. A hardened (not in a sexual way) biker who just so happens to be jewish. He and his biker gang are all cheery and nice until Billy, their age old former leader, bursts back into the world. Billy wrecks havoc and Johnny has to reach the top of the social ladder to get the club back to shape. It’s a classic Rockstar tale of brotherhood versus friendship, and every single essence of The Lost and Damned’s story and characters are all delivered perfectly. Except from a few things you can’t help but laugh at. A fiscally successful biker gang. Hehe.
What The Lost and Damned manages to do, rather to the whole of the gaming market, is redefine on what we think of when the words ‘downloadable content’ are said. It’s a eight to twelve hour experience on the level of any other hot release out there, for just $20/£20. It’s worth every dollar and penny and it’s downright awesome. It expands on GTA IV’s un-GTA-ness and creates a whole new perspective of Liberty City. You genuinely see a different side of the town, and you feel involved, it’s a crazy tale and has an authentic ‘GTA’ story.
Johnny gets a variety of new toys and stuff to play with. A new machine pistol, a sawn off shotgun, pipe bombs the list goes on. My favourite of which is the automatic shotgun, twelve shotgun shells fired as fast as a machine gun. Leaves a huge mark on cars and can propel people through the air with its power. There’s new cars, motorbikes, choppers and stuff to do. Whole new clubs and diners open up to take your friends to, and a new comedian is on the block too. So much to do, yet so little to pay. This is what GTA IV should’ve been.
Thing is, some problems persist and some problems have been carefully fixed. For starters, motorbikes aren’t like handling fat men on unicycles anymore, it feels really in touch. You’ll never fall off your bike, but if you were playing Niko’s story then you’d fly into the sea. Although, the same cover system is back but blindfiring a grenade launcher never loses its charm. In fact, nothing in this title ever seems to grow old or get stale. Half-way through GTA IV and you were baffled by the moral choices it presented. But now this is balls to the walls action. This is Grand Theft Auto.
I’m largely biased towards The Lost and Damned. I can’t exactly explain why but its just a completely different and raw GTA experience. It’s completely detached from its Siberian counterpart and it all shows. Rockstar truly know how to make great games, and now they know how to redefine words. More specifically, downloadable content. So, when the Ballad of Gay Tony hits in two weeks, tune in for the review and get the low down on what I think. Is it a true return to the world of Grand Theft and Auto? Well, we’ll have to hope and wait.