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Been there, done that

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Fuzzknuckles
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#1

Posted 15 June 2013 - 08:36 AM

So, bit of background here first - a couple days back, my PS3 YLOD'd and is currently having a small boat built for it, so I can give it a proper Viking burial. Xbox fan boys, hush yo mouths, this little fella lasted 5 years with no issues, but I'm on my second 360. Go figure. It's been replaced, so fear not, I am back in the game. However, I lost all my saves (yeah yeah, PSPlus, I know...)

I've had to start from the beginning, starting with GTAIV. I'd played through it again about a year ago, but this time it felt so familiar, so welcoming... like going home. And yet, at the same time, I still had that sense of wonder that I had the first time I played it.

That feeling. That's going to be magnified to intense levels when V drops. A whole new city. A whole new range of characters. Which got me thinking...

Michael, a product of the witness protection program... he's been relocated to somewhere he wasn't entirely familiar with. Somewhere new. Somewhere with ... 'that magic'.

This is such a key driving force behind the opening of the game. We don't know how long he's been in LS, but I'm guessing not long. Just moved there. Still getting familiar with the place.

That's a hugely important plot device right there.

How do we make a player feel like they're connected to this city, yet remove a layer of suspension of disbelief? Make them new to the city. The fact that Franklin and Trevor are both residents of their respective locales, with history and time spent, would make it completely unsuitable and kind of jarring to the player - they've been here all their lives, yet, I have no f*cking clue how to get across town yet. And that's why Michael's recent arrival is so key. You, like Michael, have to learn your way around. Meet people, do things. Y'know?

In all the previous 3D era games, it's the same - the protag arrives at the city at the start of the game, fresh from another location, ready to wreak havoc/revenge/bring gifts to the sick and elderly. The only slight exception to this is CJ, who returns to San An after time away. A long time away. Long enough to feel lost in his own home.

So, it's my belief that the game will start with Michael (contrary to the demos where it's kicked off with Franklin skydiving) and the focus will be on him, his family, and their adjustment to LS, for at least the first hour of the game. While you get that feeling of familiarity, essentially.

Any thoughts?

visionist
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#2

Posted 15 June 2013 - 08:45 AM

You're right. Although being able to choose who you play as right from the start would be tres cool for replay value, it would bring problems with that same value: is each character's first mission strand exclusive to their opening? Say you start as Franklin and play as him for a good while, by the time you switch to Trevor, his story is already well under way, denying you the full impact of all three stories in one playthrough.

I enjoyed the contrast in TLAD wherein Johnny knew the city and felt at home in it. Totally different vibe to IV- because we were also familiar with LC by that time. If we start as Franklin or Trevor, it'll jar since they know everything and we don't.

Fuzzknuckles
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#3

Posted 15 June 2013 - 08:48 AM

QUOTE (visionist @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 09:45)
You're right. Although being able to choose who you play as right from the start would be tres cool for replay value, it would bring problems with that same value: is each character's first mission strand exclusive to their opening? Say you start as Franklin and play as him for a good while, by the time you switch to Trevor, his story is already well under way, denying you the full impact of all three stories in one playthrough.

I enjoyed the contrast in TLAD wherein Johnny knew the city and felt at home in it. Totally different vibe to IV- because we were also familiar with LC by that time. If we start as Franklin or Trevor, it'll jar since they know everything and we don't.

Absolutely agreed on all points here - I really hoped there'd be a choice of who you begin the game as - character select screen at the start of the game may be pushing it a bit, but I really don't see that as possible. It has to start with Michael and it has to be a period of at least an hour of tutorial/familiarisation missions, like all the previous games, to set the scene and make that feeling of being new actually work.

Really interested to see how they pull off introducing the 3 characters. We've obviously seen Michael introduce Trevor to Franklin in the trailer 2, but I'm totally intrigued to see how they'll actually bring them together to do that.

ill-thoughts
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#4

Posted 15 June 2013 - 08:55 AM

Frank is a guy who repo's cars so we'll see alot of that as optional side missions probably (along with turf wars?)....Trev is a guy who runs drugs so we'll see alot of that as optional side missions as well (drug wars?)....Michael is the guy they will center the HEIST missions around so therefore, his missions will be Mandatory and Main as they involve the other 2 characters as well.

From B With Love
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#5

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:05 AM

Yes your right I think. Also in one of the trailers franklin and Lamar ask Michael where a house is which suggests Michael
Does not know franklin at this point. Most likely Michael sees what he does and see what use he has for a guy like franklin.

Secondly in another trailer Trevor is hugging Michael and picking him up which also suggests that is the point they reunite.

Nice thinking op.

MikeyBelic
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#6

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:07 AM

This is such a misleading title lol, I was preparing myself for a bitch thread.

I do agree with you very much OP, however I personally believe the game will start off more like Max Payne 3, a scene where Michael is reminiscing about a previous robbery, very minor, and you flip through all the characters in this minor mission, to get used to game play and what not.

Maybe the missions will revolve around Michael reminiscing with his therapist?

Fuzzknuckles
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#7

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:10 AM

QUOTE (From B With Love @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 10:05)
Yes your right I think. Also in one of the trailers franklin and Lamar ask Michael where a house is which suggests Michael
Does not know franklin at this point. Most likely Michael sees what he does and see what use he has for a guy like franklin.

Secondly in another trailer Trevor is hugging Michael and picking him up which also suggests that is the point they reunite.

Nice thinking op.

Thanks.

I really can't see it starting with the other two. Just no way.

The shot in trailer 2 where we see Franklin asking Michael for the location of the Bertolt Beach House, yeah, that must be the moment they meet. And I think at that point, Michael witnesses Trevor doing something, probably repo-ing a car and showing off his driving skills, which piques his interest in him and drives that side of the story, their meeting, onwards.







OH GOD I JUST CAN'T FLIPPING WELL WAIT.

sivaG
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#8

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:24 AM

I think the game will start up with Michael sitting by his pool(shown in the first preview)

visionist
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#9

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:33 AM

QUOTE (Fuzzknuckles @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 09:10)
...yeah, that must be the moment they meet. And I think at that point, Michael witnesses Trevor doing something...







Franklin you mean tounge.gif

R* have been very ambitious with this structure. Every time they try something new, I'm always sceptical at first, and always won over absolutely, very soon after that.

Here's my guess: You start out as Michael, either at home or during an errand out in the desert (I'd love that- would catch a lot of gamers off guard) or very likely in his therapist's office ALA The Sopranos opening, and relatively early on, go to meet Trevor for the first time since "the old unpleasantness". After catching up and doing a mission together, you can now play as either Michael or Trevor. Trevor's story and Michael's story continue, until, it seems, having visited his therapist again, Michael meets Franklin when Franklin asks him for directions. They too do a mission together, and Michael introduces Trevor to Franklin after that. Now you can play as all three.

If you start out in the therapist's office, a flashback to an action-heavy mission with all three would be a great opener, although it would complicate the timeline (is Michael seeing his therapist after the game is over? That wouldn't work if we meet Franklin at the therapist. It would also instantly spoil Michael's fate- he survives. Although having him slowly reveal how he betrayed & killed the other two to his therapist over a series of visits would be a cool twist).

DJ Vejeejee
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#10

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:35 AM

I think it starts at the airport!

probably with micheal because he is sort of the main character, because its from the first trailer, quote: 'after 25 years on the east coast its time to head back bladi bladi bla'


but he already bought a big house.. uhmzzz...



welllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll i dunnnoo then


but i think the airport anyway! .. haha maybe with his family, and they bought the house online back in New York and u have to drive them there:P wiejjjjjjjjjjj i figured it out man smile.gif

Fuzzknuckles
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#11

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:37 AM

QUOTE (visionist @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 10:33)
QUOTE (Fuzzknuckles @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 09:10)
...yeah, that must be the moment they meet. And I think at that point, Michael witnesses Trevor doing something...







Franklin you mean tounge.gif


You're right, I do. I'm tired, I was up playing IV all night wink.gif

I think it'll start out at his therapist - an initial discussion, maybe even his first visit to this therapist, that sets the scene and story of Michael in action. Then we'll see him go home, have his family introduced and explored a little - the stress, the tension, the dysfunctional side of his awful kids, etc.

And to escape that, he takes to the streets either on foot or on his bike. Here we'll get to see some LS, but be driven towards an objective that introduces either Trevor or Franklin. Most likely Franklin, at the beach house.

evoluon--720
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#12

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:43 AM

I imagine we will spend a lengthy amount of time with each character before we're able to choose freely..
Starting with Michael-Franklin then Trevor

Fuzzknuckles
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#13

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:48 AM

I think it'll be about an hour, maybe a half hour, with each before we can switch freely. But I'm certain that you're right about the order - Michael, Franklin, Trevor. Just like the three trailers.

And this is great for me, as it's saving the character I'm most interested in till last. Build up some anticipation for him!

richard1997jones
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#14

Posted 15 June 2013 - 09:57 AM

The whole family are going to be normal for the first part perhaps with a few flash backs to really get us to understand the character and then maybe something big happens and then the gta part kicks in. This is probably the most unique gta ever made, yes IV and SA had family but nothing like this and with the new characters this game is far from familiar.

Fuzzknuckles
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#15

Posted 15 June 2013 - 10:04 AM

QUOTE (richard1997jones @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 10:57)
The whole family are going to be normal for the first part perhaps with a few flash backs to really get us to understand the character and then maybe something big happens and then the gta part kicks in. This is probably the most unique gta ever made, yes IV and SA had family but nothing like this and with the new characters this game is far from familiar.

The few short family-based missions in RDR were really, really cool. It took the tension all the way down then blew it wide open again. I think we'll be looking at that sort of detailed, emotionally fragile kind of interaction, like when Marston is finally reunited with his family.

Not sure about that airport angle. I think it'll start either at his therapist's office, or at home, preparing to drive over to his therapist's. Home life is obviously key to Michael's story. His frustration with it.

visionist
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#16

Posted 15 June 2013 - 10:13 AM

I really like the idea of you arriving as Michael at LSX, family in tow, and driving to your new home as the first mission. It fits with the classic GTA driving introduction mission (or at least III & IV's style, not sure about VC, been too long since I played it) and is a very efficient method of highlighting how dysfunctional this family is, stressed out as they'll be from their long flight. The house will be already furnished, perhaps by Michael previously, and the car you use is Michael's recently acquired Sentinel which had been parked in long-term parking. Roof down (this intro mission would always be sunny), you'd get a great look at the city as would Michael's family, who would be arriving for the first time.

Cue their bitching when they see how Michael has furnished the house tounge.gif

Above all, it needs to reflect Michael's words in trailer one: he wants to start afresh, NOT be a criminal. So crime shouldn't be his first priority. He gets dragged into it, by a catalysing event.

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#17

Posted 15 June 2013 - 10:19 AM

I bet it starts as a QTE...with Trevor doubled over in pain and if you don't hit the buttons just right, you will bust the blood vessels in his eyes and have to start over.

user posted image

This actually happened to me a few years ago, I had an extreme coughing fit and did this to both my eyes...it does not hurt and its well worth it when you are walking around the mall...walmart etc and scaring the sh!t out of little kids.

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#18

Posted 15 June 2013 - 10:26 AM

I'm seeing the line: "What do you want, Michael? to be the intro line into the game with Rockstar logo and all that shizzle

drr26
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#19

Posted 15 June 2013 - 01:04 PM

It seems most likely we will start as Michael. But a choice wouldn't be a bad thing either

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#20

Posted 15 June 2013 - 01:26 PM

I think it will start with a therapy session of Michael's. It would be a good way to introduce him.

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#21

Posted 15 June 2013 - 01:36 PM

I love it when games are not all about fun all the time, sometimes they try to convey a feeling like here wuth Micheal, that sh*t is what makes games art.

On another note, I'm guessing Micheal was there for a long time

bfett21
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#22

Posted 15 June 2013 - 02:10 PM

Yeah it seems logical that the game will start off with NO character switching, and starts off with Michael. It will be a grand introduction to GTA5.

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#23

Posted 15 June 2013 - 02:29 PM

"Been there, done that"...

....I want a new tour bus full of old guitars
My own star on Hollywood Boulevard
Somewhere between Cher
And James Dean is fine for me
(So how you gonna do it?)

I'm gonna trade this life
For fortune and fameI'd even cut my hair
And change my name
'Cause we all just wanna be big R*'s
And live in hilltop houses, drivin' fifteen cars
The girls come easy and the drugs come cheap
We'll all stay skinny 'cause we just won't eat
And we'll hang out in the coolest bars
In the VIP with the movie stars
Every good gold digger's gonna wind up there
Every Playboy bunny with her bleach blond hair
And well, hey, hey, I wanna be a R*
Hey, hey, I wanna be a R*



Am liking your subtle topic header Mr FuzzyKnuckles - Have a couple of hobnobs cookie.gif cookie.gif

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#24

Posted 15 June 2013 - 02:55 PM

QUOTE (bfett21 @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 14:10)
Yeah it seems logical that the game will start off with NO character switching, and starts off with Michael. It will be a grand introduction to GTA5.

As good as it sounds, and logical it may be, to start with Michael, at the Airport, Therapist or otherwise, I'm not convinced entirely.
I'm sure I'm not the only one to have mentioned this, but in the collectors edition description it says 'Garage Property: Players will instantly receive a garage to store custom vehicles.'
If we start off as Michael, either he won't have his house yet, or it doesn't have a garage. I could be wrong, it could just be an extra garage or something.
I do agree with no character switching for the first couple of missions though, that makes a lot of sense.

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#25

Posted 15 June 2013 - 03:05 PM

QUOTE (Clueless115 @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 14:55)
QUOTE (bfett21 @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 14:10)
Yeah it seems logical that the game will start off with NO character switching, and starts off with Michael. It will be a grand introduction to GTA5.

As good as it sounds, and logical it may be, to start with Michael, at the Airport, Therapist or otherwise, I'm not convinced entirely.
I'm sure I'm not the only one to have mentioned this, but in the collectors edition description it says 'Garage Property: Players will instantly receive a garage to store custom vehicles.'
If we start off as Michael, either he won't have his house yet, or it doesn't have a garage. I could be wrong, it could just be an extra garage or something.
I do agree with no character switching for the first couple of missions though, that makes a lot of sense.

I'm sure its a garage somewhere in the city that you'll have access too, rather than at Michael's house. Like a private car park somewhere.

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#26

Posted 15 June 2013 - 03:18 PM

The whole approach at the beggining of the game has a lot of possible questions to it. How will you be presented with a "now, you can play as this guy too" without feeling vulgar and disconnected? Will you be able to play as all 3 of them right away, even before they meet each other? All this could be a super cool thing, an opportunity for R* to hit the nail and make it epic. Which I'm sure they will colgate.gif

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#27

Posted 15 June 2013 - 03:53 PM

I'm pretty sure the game starts with therapist scene asking, "Michael, why did you move here?" And Michael staring at his therapist for a few seconds before he says, "why did I move here? I guess it was the weather" dialogue.

Then Michael gets out of the office and we are introduced to the driving mechanics, get to drive back home and meet the family.

Fuzzknuckles
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#28

Posted 16 June 2013 - 09:38 AM

QUOTE (Sept17th2013 @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 16:18)
Will you be able to play as all 3 of them right away, even before they meet each other?

This is a really interesting question - and I think the answer is yes. I think that we'll see each character introduced separately, via the cutscenes we're already aware of (the meet at the beach house, the scene with Trevor picking up Michael - in fact, these may even be in the same cutscene, potentially)

Once we've been introduced to each character as an individual, I believe they'll be drawn together to become our team.

But this is really tangential to the original topic. I'm not really thinking so much about how each character is brought to the story so much as what R* will do to make you feel like you're new in town - a feeling that we as the player will have that first time we load up. Yet two of the characters are long-time natives of the areas they belong to. The only way to do this is to focus on the guy that has been there the shortest time.

Looking back over the airport scenario, that actually makes a little more sense to me now - kind of like CJ's introduction. They arrive and are introduced in quite a low key way. I highly doubt the first few missions as Michael will feature a lot of action - after all, he's out of the life at that point, yet to be dragged back in.

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#29

Posted 16 June 2013 - 09:48 AM

QUOTE (Fuzzknuckles @ Sunday, Jun 16 2013, 20:38)
QUOTE (Sept17th2013 @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 16:18)
Will you be able to play as all 3 of them right away, even before they meet each other?

This is a really interesting question - and I think the answer is yes. I think that we'll see each character introduced separately, via the cutscenes we're already aware of (the meet at the beach house, the scene with Trevor picking up Michael - in fact, these may even be in the same cutscene, potentially)

Once we've been introduced to each character as an individual, I believe they'll be drawn together to become our team.

I dunno, I think it will start out with Michael since he's new to the City, Perhaps he will be driving from the airport with his family, or perhaps he will be standing on the Balcony and starts with "Why Did I move here? I guess it was the weather. I dunno, that thing, that Magic." And then he'll have the phone interrupt him perhaps and he has to go somewhere and maybe he'll run into Trevor, and then something to do with Franklin, Trevor is new in town as well.

And then something will happen to meet Franklin, but until you do that (It should be forced.) You can only play as Michael. That's just my opinion.

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#30

Posted 16 June 2013 - 10:25 AM

QUOTE (Fuzzknuckles @ Saturday, Jun 15 2013, 10:36)
The fact that Franklin and Trevor are both residents of their respective locales, with history and time spent, would make it completely unsuitable and kind of jarring to the player - they've been here all their lives, yet, I have no f*cking clue how to get across town yet. And that's why Michael's recent arrival is so key. You, like Michael, have to learn your way around. Meet people, do things. Y'know?

That's a very good point and I utterly agree. This is the reason why I felt connected to Niko in GTAIV, for instance. He was new to Liberty City and new to America. Basically, we were in the exact same position as the protagonist of the game. It just seems to be a small detail and it's a videogame after all, but it means more than you would think. In my opinion, Michael is the most interesting protagonist out of all protagonists in GTAV and he seems to be the most important one. Probably because he was the only one we were aware of when the first trailer was published; and his background story appears to be the most established one. He is the character I will spent most of my time with, at least in my first playthrough. The multiple protagonists system is somehow similar to the one of GTAIV and Episodes of Liberty City. Niko has a detailed background story and he's a very interesting character. Johnny's and Luis' background stories aren't that detailed and they aren't as interesting as the main protagonist. Perhaps, the same will be the case with GTAV [Michael being the most interesting character; followed by Trevor and Franklin]. But in the end, it's a matter of taste.




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