GTA3 was on All Things Considered today - and it wasn’t some sensationalist garbage about cop-killing or what people are saying about it in EB. Reviewer Robert Holt talked all about the open-endedness, how much he loved the fact that the game world let you do things that came to you naturally, like changing the radio station etc., and that he didn’t have to guess what the designer wanted you to do at any given point in the game. He also praised several moments in the game that he said he appreciated “like anyone would appreciate art, like getting lost in a painting.” He even made a reference to Emerson’s “transparent eyeball” which sounds arty. So there.

He also said at one point, talking about one moment in particular, that “gamers call this ‘immersion.’” And they do!

The audio should be available tonight after 10PM Eastern:

I’ve always liked NPR. I even donate funds to my local station from time to time.


Audio is up. You can listen to this specific segment. Go here

and scroll down to Grand Theft Auto III

The video game Grand Theft Auto III has sold millions of copies. In the game, the player plays the role of a carjacking, murdering criminal. And some are concerned that the game’s violence is unsuitable for younger players. Reviewer Robert Holt, however, sees beyond the violence into the complexity of the game. (3:45)"

“The question ‘what does the designer want me to do here’ is such a buzzkill when playing a game.”

This is a good review from someone who actually gets it. Anybody know anything about this Robert Holt?

I am not certain, but it is most likely the same Robert Holt who was originally NPR’s webmaster, and now is the director of technical services for NPR Online. It would make sense = tech geek who likes games.

And his awful delivery also betrays that a radio pro is not involved. I don’t want that to sound too critical. The unpolished readings by the actual authors of pieces is something that endears me to ATC.

>He even made a reference to Emerson’s “transparent eyeball” which sounds arty. So there.

Actually I wish a reviewer would just use something like… “Kafkaesque” would sound so modern and be all cool!

BTW, that NPR review was pretty good. Here’s hoping they do more PC game reviews. Would like them to do a review for Morrowind and say something like, “Its Kafkaesque” just for the hell of it.


I found it amusing that the GTA3 story was just below a story titled “Exploding Police Cars”


… but with my luck, Wagner James Au would get a games reviewing gig there.

Way OT:

I’m not much for fighting games (outside Smash Bros., which is a platformer/fighter hybrid), but if a fighting game could get James Lipton and Wagner James Au in there as opponents, it would get my $50.

Other opponents for my fighting game:

Bud Selig
Saddam Hussein
James Dobson
James Watt (still breathing?)
Tim LaHaye
Anonymous bandwagon car-flipping Lakers fans
Those 2 guys from Air Supply (still breathing?)
A nice selection of televangelists

My game wouldn’t need a lot of balance or skill. As long as the enemy voice work and death animations were good.

Sad NPR couldn’t get the opinion of a real gamer. Even sadder on the omm forums, we have no real gamers either. Just people talking about creating mini-games within the game and cool moments that normally involve flying cars.

Where are the real gamers? Where is all the talk about the joys of cop killing?


The real gamers are too busy beating prostitutes to death to post along with a bunch of web board sissies.

I had a flying car experience in GTA 3. I managed to catch it as a replay.

Pretty bizarre bug, wouldn’t you say? But cool.

…listening to morning radio in Chicago, they’re playing a soundbite of Nightline with Ted Koppel and some other GTA3 tv bits, discussing violence and society and GTA3. I’m surprised people have an opinion of a game they havent played. And then parents complaining that there 10 year old is playing it… HELLO ! BE A PARENT and TAKE IT AWAY FROM THEM DUH!


Like Urge Overkill said, “THE KIDS ARE INSANE!!!”


I’d take awful delivery over a supposed “radio pro” anyday.

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but 90% of all radio nowadays, just about everything but NPR, is run by radio-saavy morons who wouldn’t have anything original or smart to say if they got paid by the word. And we all know how original and smart people have a whole helluva lot to say.

Well, so do stupid people, but generally it’s less.

Overkill is a song by Overki… hrm, wait, wrong forum.

I’m sorry, you’re assuming that most parents today actually have the mental horse-power to do free-thinking on their own. You’re making the worst assumption of them all, as well: That parents actually want to put work into raising their kids.

Sorry to all you parents on this board, you can give all the “but there’s not enough time in a day…” excuse, or any excuse you want. But the bottom line is that if you aren’t willing to be a parent, aren’t willing to make your kid hurt if it’s good for them, and aren’t willing to do what-fucking-ever it takes to raise a child, then I have two words for you: Trojan Man!