Rockstar Says Lost and Damned a "Full Game"
For the planned price of 1600 Microsoft points or $20, Rockstar needs to offer some serious value with its upcoming expansion to GTA: IV. For those who don’t already know, the first of several planned expansion packs is called the Lost and Damned, and it features biker gang leader Johhny Klebitz from the main storyline. But wait, according to Rockstar, we shouldn’t be calling it an “expansion” at all. Lost and Damned contains so much new material and storyline, the developers argue, that it should be considered a whole new game in its own right.
That is quite a bold claim, so let’s examine the facts.
According to the publisher, Lost and Damned contains about 1/3 of the story content contained in the original game, making it a massive endeavor by traditional DLC standards. This translates to 15-20 hours of new play time. What’s more, the experience of paying as Johnny adds a whole new dimension to the Liberty City we are used to: Johnny moves and acts differently that Niko, reflecting his big, cumbersome biker frame. He also comes with some new items, notably a badass chopper and a brand new weapon, the grenade launcher. Johnny’s missions are meant to be played on their own as a coherent plotline. They are accessed from the game’s boot menu, reflecting the separateness of this new content.
On the other hand, Lost and Damned does not completely change the core experience of GTA IV in the way a new title would. Lost and Damned does not add any meaningful new places to travel or landmarks to interact with. The whole thing takes place in the same Liberty City that we have already explored at length playing as Niko. In fact, players will even see Niko appear on-screen as an NPC at certain points during the DLC missions.
So, is the experience shaping up to be a whole new game, or just an expansion? We’ll take the safe route and say that Lost and Damned is going to be something in between. Whether or not it is worth $20 will depend largely on whether you enjoyed the story-driven focus of GTA IV, or whether you long for more varied gameplay experiences.
Johnny Klebitz riding his Hog in The Lost and Damned DLC.
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