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Book Review

Book Cover

Grand Theft Auto IV
Official Strategy Guide

RRP: £12.99, US $19.99, Cdn $21.99
ISBN-13: 978 0 7440 0933 0
ISBN-10: 0 7440 0933 2
Available 29 April 2008

Play the latest game in the Grand Theft Auto franchise, GTA IV, and be prepared with this comprehensive guide that features a step-by-step walkthrough of every mission. Find in-depth area maps pinpointing every square mile of Liberty City and a listing of all equipment. Complete coverage of collectibles, stunt jumps and hidden items will keep you ahead. Plus, bonus content includes an exclusive foldout map...

For those who have managed to play the latest Grand Theft Auto (GTA) game will be pleased to hear that a guide book is also available. I say "managed", as despite claims that the game broke the record for first-day sales (609,000 units - or an estimated £24.4 million), because of the ludicrous ordering policy many gamers are still awaiting their copy from online retailers. And those that have received their game are reporting a few issues with it - including unexplained freezing.

We've been playing GTA IV in the office since we picked up our pre-ordered copies on the day of release. While we've experienced no serious bugs with either the Xbox 360 or PS3 versions, there have been various fights over whose turn it is to play, as well as various shouting across the room to see if anyone knows how to complete various missions. Now that shouting will stop - hopefully.

The Official Strategy Guide is an essential purchase for all gamers who want to complete 100% of the game and (if you're an Xbox 360 owner) unlock all of the achievements. In fact, for Xbox 360 players, there's a section that details all of the achievements and what mission you need to accomplish to unlock them. There's also a quick guide to the online multiplayer games.

The layout has been pretty well thought through. Each page has a white background so there's no annoying blended images which can sometimes make the text difficult to read. The images are all clear and of big enough size so your don't have to squint to see the detail. The only real problem is that the "Tips" sections that are scattered around this guide are impossible to track down on their own. Also where's the detailed showroom guide of all cars that are available in the game? Or a list of music tracks on each radio station? Now, while neither of these are necessary to complete the game, some will find this just as important as a list of weapons - which is included.

While the RRP is £13, many of the online retailers are knocking this out for under £9 - which is well worth it. Anyone serious about GTA IV needs to pick up a copy of this guide.


Nick Smithson

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