I have to applaud Rockstar for their attempt to give this game a much more realistic feel to it. Including the ability to play the Stock Market.
But I think they failed at two things here.
1.) Giving people a real tutorial on how to use the Stock Market and what to look for.
2.) Gauging whether this would be useful to the average player.
The result is a prime example of when a video game tries too hard to be realistic. It loses that sense of fun and becomes a task not a challenge.
The average person does not play the stock market in real life..Nor do they know the basics. Sure most people know of the concept of buying low spending high but they dont understand how people are able to predict what will go back up after dropping so low. Or what even effects that in the first place.
So even in a very watered down version of the stock market. Youre introducing a system that most people are instantly turned off by because of the real life counterpart being viewed as so difficult.
Throw in the fact that the game simply gives you the stocks to invest in and tells you when to sell. It fails to show you how to do this on your own without the game guiding you.
And without the Guide or replaying the game after the first time running through the assassination missions and taking down notes of where to invest. Most people wont have a chance to invest with all three characters. I know that the first time I went through was without the Guide or any useful information here on the site. So even as Franklin I missed out on a few opportunities to invest because once the mission started...Things went a little too fast for me to slow down and play the stock market.
Then theres the confusing fact that theres two different stock markets you can invest in. One is internal and the other is influenced by everyones stats. But the one influenced by stats is all over the place and difficult to predict...Or even know why things are going the way they are. We have no idea if its solely stats influencing it or if Rockstar themselves are manipulating it...Or if its even working properly for that matter.
I know Rockstar is datamining us and Id be very interested in seeing the numbers on how many are actually actively playing the stock markets trying to get their characters rich enough to buy up the properties and do as they please. Compared to who put little to no effort into it.
Personally I think its a failed attempt at the realism factor. They tried to introduce something new to the method of bringing in money. And without a serious tutorial or a playerbase that was invested in this feature. I really dont see this being used by the majority and most players will never see the billions of dollars youre supposedly able to make off the stock market.
After the end of the gameplay. Its pretty obvious that the only way to make the money needed to own all the properties and vehicles was to play the stock market. Id go as far as saying the stock market at the end of it all is more important then the heists as the stock market reels in 100 to 300% more profits then a heist.
Again I applaud the attempt. But being someone that bought this game for the sake of committing crimes in a video game. I just dont see the gritty side of Stock Markets like I do heists or stealing cars. For me the fun is in becoming this criminal and doing outrageous things a normal person wouldnt do or be able to get away with. I feel slightly disappointed that the method of making a lot of money falls into a very real world game of risk.