Very surprised at the amount of people here saying GTA V's story was short. How long did it take you all to complete it?
I just finished it last weekend - took me 2 months!
* Using only GTA games after GTA III that follow essentially the same format.*
**Gathered from GTA Wiki so it may not be 100% accurate**
GTA 3 - 51 Story Missions 17 Payphone Missions
GTA VC - 37 Story Missions 19 Asset Missions 5 Payphone Missions
GTA A - 41 Story Missions
GTA SA - 105 Story Missions
GTA LCS - 70 Story Missions
GTA VCS - 59 Story Missions
GTA IV - 88 Story Missions
GTA TLAD - 22 Story Missions
GTA TBOGT - 26 Story Missions
GTA V - 69 Story Missions
Even with its weaker missions, I'd say GTA V has a respectable amount of missions. Averaging these games up comes to 59 missions average (using only story missions and the asset missions for Vice City because you have to complete some of them), which I'd say GTA V probably hits even if we consider most preparation to be 'non-missions'. The only ones that truly felt too short to me were the expansions, but they are expansions and not full games for a reason I guess.
But this was THE game. One of the longest-developed GTA games. I'm not sure about other people, (probably the minority here AGAIN), but I appreciate a good single-player more than the multiplayer.
The only mission counters it out-does is the Stories and the Episodes. Rockstar never advertised the Stories games as full-fledged, just more-or-less nice additions... which they were. Hell, they've almost COMPLETELY forgotten about the Stories today.
The Episodes, I think it's pretty damn amazing we regard them with such high honor as to even call them their own games. They were DLC, they were released on the PSN and XBOX Marketplace, unlike the Stories games that retailed in stores.
The fact that twenty-some missions gave TLaD and TBoGT such following shows you how capable Rockstar is to tell an amazing story with dynamic characters in such a small window, let alone integrate them so well into IV. Given my endless posting on the topic, and profile picture, and signature, blah blah blah, it's no doubt I relished TLaD's story more than V's, but I would even put Gay Tony up there above V. Gay Tony was the "screw it. We made two serious stories for the IV era, let's just have fun with this one." Which is what Gay Tony presented itself as, and I appreciated it for that. All the missions were action-packed and over the top stupid fun.
Back to the "identity crisis". V presented itself as a bit more of a serious game. Michael would be the bourgeois bank-robber, Franklin the street gangster, and Trevor the back-woods psycho-path. But no. In those 69 missions, what did we get? Going to stores and buying masks. About 10 missions TOTAL of BOTH Trevor and Franklin doing their respective missions in their settings, and just throwing them into the robbery mix with Michael. Then we had the over-the-top missions, like the Splinter Cell world-terrorism chemical f*cking thing or whatever, which technically wasn't even a "heist" mission this game was themed around. It would have been nice if at least the side-activities were the over-the-top whacko missions, while the story kept a serious tone.
But no. Engaging in triathlons with bitchy feminists. Tailing celebrities with obnoxious California-esc douches. Towing cars FIVE TIMES with that insufferable Tonya. A lot of these characters, Mary-Ann, Tonya, Dom, Beverly, Josh, they weren't interesting or giving reasons to sympathize with them. I didn't even "love to hate" them. They were just irritating and insipid, like the missions they provided. The more interesting missions were Trevor's back-country buddies, like Maude, Cletus, and Nigel, but Franklin's were just awful. And again, MICHAEL HAS NO SIDE MISSIONS LOL, excluding the Epsilon Program (no real explanation why Michael would engage in cult practice, would have made more sense if it was given to someone like Trevor) and the ones given to other characters.