Article: May 2008 Archives

Today, Representative Jim Matheson (D-UT) introduced a bill (HR5990) to the 2nd session of the 110th Congress of the United States on behalf of himself and Representative Lee Terry (R-NE) called the "Video Games Ratings Enforcement Act."
by Kyle Ackerman


Sometimes I miss New York City. Liberty City in Grand Theft Auto IV isn't the real New York City – it's a condensed caricature. But the fidelity made possible by the latest generation of consoles and the detail added by the team at Rockstar North made Liberty City close enough to the Big Apple to make me listen for the rumble of the subway and the mixed smells of burnt pretzels, sour garbage and laundry vents. The landmarks are all there, from Lincoln Center and Grant's tomb to Coney Island's Cyclone roller coaster and the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows. (Different names, but still.) But it's not the landmarks that make Liberty City so accurate. It's the little details: the architecture in the nameless buildings; the style of familiar stores; the street-level garages of particular hotels; the barriers in the middle of streets; the ever-present scaffolding; and even the signs reminding me that it's a two-point offense to "block the box." The South Street Seaport was so perfect that I started to think "Hey... there should be a heliport just past the Seaport that I don't see." Then, as I cruised further south, the heliport popped into view, and I discovered I could take helicopter tours. The city felt so real that I was transported back to the city I was both ecstatic and sad to leave a few years ago. Sometimes realism &ndash even virtual realism &ndash isn't as great as it's cracked up to be.

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This page is an archive of entries in the Article category from May 2008.

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