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Is GTA IV actually set in 2005?

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Aquamaniac
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#1

Posted A week ago Edited by Aquamaniac, A week ago.

Because the discussion about Niko's nationality I came the the conclusion that GTA IV must be set in 2005.

 

In 2008 there was the economic crisis and the presidential election, none of this is satirized or mentioned in the game if I remember correctly.

 

2007 the first Iphone was released, yet it is absent in the game.

 

The incident where Niko's squad was ambushed did take place 10 years before the events of GTA IV, which was likely in the Croatia war and the fight over Serb Republic of Krajina in 1995 as explained in the other thread. Niko is most likely a Serb from Croatia and his mother still lives there.

 

The aftermath of 9/11 is largely present on the News, the Patriot Act was to end in 2005, the bridges are closed due to anti terror measures but opened during the game (this is the weakest argument though, but a further hint).

 

Development of GTA IV began at the end of 2004, it is more likely that the plot is settled during the time of development rather than in a future time, even if it are only a few years.

 

Any opinions?


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#2

Posted A week ago

You maybe right but there are conflicting arguments  take the FIB Buffalo that is based on the charger that was not released until 2009, this is probably a miner point but it still makes it difficult to say what year the game was set

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Tycek
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#3

Posted A week ago Edited by Tycek, A week ago.

Although Niko says that events with Darko took place 10 years ago, Florian corrects him it was actually around 13 years ago. Niko's mind could be simply clouded by the war events and he simply put events later than they actually happened. That would allow the game to be set in 2008 and Niko's participation took place in 1995, when he was very young and very angry (being 17 years old, he could lie about his age to be actually enlisted).

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StormerBoy
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#4

Posted A week ago

The line about not getting across the bridges so good, always made me feel it was set several years before 2008.
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Aquamaniac
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#5

Posted A week ago

Although Niko says that events with Darko took place 10 years ago, Florian corrects him it was actually around 13 years ago. Niko's mind could be simply clouded by the war events and he simply put events later than they actually happened. That would allow the game to be set in 2008 and Niko's participation took place in 1995, when he was very young and very angry (being 17 years old, he could lie about his age to be actually enlisted).

 

The war times event could have taken place also in 1992 and Niko smuggling people the rest of the war. Do you agree with my interpretation of Niko's ethnic and geographical background?


Tycek
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#6

Posted A week ago Edited by Tycek, A week ago.

I fully agree and I believe this may also explain the names mess like Roman or Florian having more Croatian names as their parents were simply influenced by the neighbours/friends to call kids with names from different geographical/reglious/ethnical area.

 

Croatia also fully fits the smuggling business as it one of the countries that kept access to Adriatic.

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lol232
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#7

Posted A week ago Edited by lol232, A week ago.

I mean, Niko probably just rounded it to 10.
Also in-game calendars indicate it's April 2008 along with lots of promo items for the game, not to mention as for iPhones - not everyone had an iPhone in 2008, though, Luis did.

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#8

Posted A week ago

The game may have started development in 2004, but that doesn't mean they started writing the story in 2004. Minor things like the I Phone probably weren't on their radar as GTA games have never been 100% historically accurate.

 

Besides on Niko's LCPD database profile he's listed as being 30 which means he was born in 1978. The LCPD database site itself has a © 2008 at the foot of the page.

 

I also agree with lol232 that he probably just rounded. Lets not forget that GTA IV was meant for release in 2007 which would make it closer to 10 years. Then again I just think it was done for dramatic reasons. Describing events from a decade ago has a more dramatic ring than say 12 or 13. 

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skau
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#9

Posted A week ago

the presidential election, none of this is satirized or mentioned in the game if I remember correctly.

the elections were mentioned in the radio stations, there are also some campaign billboards for the fictional candidates John Hunter and Michael Graves


Aquamaniac
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#10

Posted A week ago

 

the presidential election, none of this is satirized or mentioned in the game if I remember correctly.

the elections were mentioned in the radio stations, there are also some campaign billboards for the fictional candidates John Hunter and Michael Graves

 

 

But these weren't presidential elections? I also think the internet-cafes to be a bit out of time, they also fit better in the ealier 2000s. At least even set in 2008, the wartimes events still would fit to 1995 according to Crevic.

 

I didn't find Niko in the police data base, do I need to have been arrested before?


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#11

Posted A week ago

All protagonists are in the police database by default.


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#12

Posted A week ago Edited by P2FX, A week ago.

iPhone(iFruit Phone) is mentioned on iFruit's in-game website.

800px-IFruit.png


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#13

Posted A week ago

 

the presidential election, none of this is satirized or mentioned in the game if I remember correctly.

the elections were mentioned in the radio stations, there are also some campaign billboards for the fictional candidates John Hunter and Michael Graves
 
 
But these weren't presidential elections? I also think the internet-cafes to be a bit out of time, they also fit better in the ealier 2000s. At least even set in 2008, the wartimes events still would fit to 1995 according to Crevic.
 
I didn't find Niko in the police data base, do I need to have been arrested before?
Just go to the LCPD website at an internet cafe

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#14

Posted A week ago

 

 

 

the presidential election, none of this is satirized or mentioned in the game if I remember correctly.

the elections were mentioned in the radio stations, there are also some campaign billboards for the fictional candidates John Hunter and Michael Graves
 
 
But these weren't presidential elections? I also think the internet-cafes to be a bit out of time, they also fit better in the ealier 2000s. At least even set in 2008, the wartimes events still would fit to 1995 according to Crevic.
 
I didn't find Niko in the police data base, do I need to have been arrested before?
Just go to the LCPD website at an internet cafe

 

 

Didn't know about that, I thought I had to search via police car. Even if this site says it's 2008, it still feels earlier but maybe I am overinterpretating things.


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#15

Posted A week ago

I never felt that the game had a mid-2000s feel to it, but it was in development during the mid-2000s, so they were probably influenced a lot by stuff that happened from 2005-2006. But the game itself definitely makes it clear that it's set in 2008, and maybe it's just me now because I remember first playing in 08, but it definitely feels like that year to me now.

 

Also, as for the economic crisis, I'm almost certain that in EFLC, one of the Weazel News reports on the radio mentions a recession (and I think it's mentioned by one of the characters in BOGT). It helps that EFLC came out a year after, so they were basically able to look back a year and add that event as something that occurred in GTA IV's world, too.

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#16

Posted A week ago Edited by Zello, A week ago.

In my head the bank of Liberty robbery in Three leaf clover is responsible for causing the 08 recession in the GTA universe.
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#17

Posted A week ago

In my head the bank of Liberty robbery in Three leaf clover is responsible for causing the 08 recession in the GTA universe.

Interesting idea, but $1,000,000 being stolen is enough to cause a recession? America's economy must have literally been hanging by a thread in IV, and the Union Depository heist in V must have caused a worldwide Great Depression because they stole $200,000,000 in that, lol.

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#18

Posted A week ago

 

In my head the bank of Liberty robbery in Three leaf clover is responsible for causing the 08 recession in the GTA universe.

Interesting idea, but $1,000,000 being stolen is enough to cause a recession? America's economy must have literally been hanging by a thread in IV, and the Union Depository heist in V must have caused a worldwide Great Depression because they stole $200,000,000 in that, lol.

 

The robbery in IV even thought it was just $1 million made the public not trust banks anymore and it caused the economy to collapse.


Aquamaniac
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#19

Posted A week ago

I never felt that the game had a mid-2000s feel to it, but it was in development during the mid-2000s, so they were probably influenced a lot by stuff that happened from 2005-2006. But the game itself definitely makes it clear that it's set in 2008, and maybe it's just me now because I remember first playing in 08, but it definitely feels like that year to me now.

 

Also, as for the economic crisis, I'm almost certain that in EFLC, one of the Weazel News reports on the radio mentions a recession (and I think it's mentioned by one of the characters in BOGT). It helps that EFLC came out a year after, so they were basically able to look back a year and add that event as something that occurred in GTA IV's world, too.

 

That's interesting, I played GTA IV for the first time a few months ago and to me it felt much earlier than 2008 for the reasons explained but mostly becauce of the anti terror measures.


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#20

Posted A week ago Edited by Zello, A week ago.

 

I never felt that the game had a mid-2000s feel to it, but it was in development during the mid-2000s, so they were probably influenced a lot by stuff that happened from 2005-2006. But the game itself definitely makes it clear that it's set in 2008, and maybe it's just me now because I remember first playing in 08, but it definitely feels like that year to me now.

 

Also, as for the economic crisis, I'm almost certain that in EFLC, one of the Weazel News reports on the radio mentions a recession (and I think it's mentioned by one of the characters in BOGT). It helps that EFLC came out a year after, so they were basically able to look back a year and add that event as something that occurred in GTA IV's world, too.

 

That's interesting, I played GTA IV for the first time a few months ago and to me it felt much earlier than 2008 for the reasons explained but mostly becauce of the anti terror measures.

 

Anti terrorism was pretty big in 2008 and still is in NYC today. IV was missing a bit more IMO they needed to have the LCPD do surge drills and have the NOOSE every now and then assemble a team outside of Liberty City landmarks like Rotterdam tower to show their presence.

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MARKUS.
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#21

Posted A week ago

Interesting OP, it makes lots of sense, but I am sorry to tell you that your theory is ruined cause of EFLC, Johnny mentions that is a recession going on (0:36) and TLAD and TBOGT happens at the same time as GTA IV

 

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#22

Posted A week ago

I never felt that the game had a mid-2000s feel to it, but it was in development during the mid-2000s, so they were probably influenced a lot by stuff that happened from 2005-2006. But the game itself definitely makes it clear that it's set in 2008, and maybe it's just me now because I remember first playing in 08, but it definitely feels like that year to me now.
 
Also, as for the economic crisis, I'm almost certain that in EFLC, one of the Weazel News reports on the radio mentions a recession (and I think it's mentioned by one of the characters in BOGT). It helps that EFLC came out a year after, so they were basically able to look back a year and add that event as something that occurred in GTA IV's world, too.

 
That's interesting, I played GTA IV for the first time a few months ago and to me it felt much earlier than 2008 for the reasons explained but mostly becauce of the anti terror measures.
As mentioned, anti-terror measures were still a thing in 2008. Bomb plots happen and get foiled all the time, new measures get put into place, etc. Its not entirely unfeasible to think that there was a credible threat against bridges and tunnels in IV, which resulted in the temporary security checkpoints that prevented Niko from crossing into other areas. I remember when there was a bomb threat against the Holland Tunnel, as well as foiled plots against the subway system, and they always result in increased security and new security measures for a period of time. And I'm pretty sure trucks are still banned from using the tunnels since 9/11. If they were realistic about it, you'd get a wanted level every time you drove through the Booth Tunnel in a truck.
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#23

Posted A week ago Edited by Scaglietti, A week ago.

You maybe right but there are conflicting arguments  take the FIB Buffalo that is based on the charger that was not released until 2009, this is probably a miner point but it still makes it difficult to say what year the game was set

The FIB Buffalo is based on the LX Body, which is 2006-2010. It shares absolutely no characteristics with the LB Body. Rockstar, rather cheaply, tried to parody the LB body with the Buffalo S by adding similar lights and bodywork to the LX Body parody. This does mean that the game should be based at least post-2005.

 

To be frank there aren't a whole lot of post-2005 based cars in IV. But if the soundtrack, talk stations and news stories closely resemble 2008 then I'd say it's based in 2008.

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#24

Posted A week ago

To be honest, IV's vibe and setting gives me 05-09 year accuracy. From the music, technology, ringtones were really a thing back then, also the economy. Even today, I play IV and I remember sh*t that happened in around that time. Memories might I add.


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#25

Posted A week ago

That feeling/vibe is expected due to the development time/changes during it. There's a lot of things in the game that make me think it was at one point set in the earlier 2000s, rather than later. Phones are not consistent: you can find some very early 2000s phones in some cutscenes, as well as modern in others. EFLC obviously had post-IV changes to make the game feel more stable in terms of time.

 

Honestly? Just stick with what you like to have in your headcanon the most and enjoy yourself. It's not like anyone can stop you from doing so.


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#26

Posted A week ago Edited by Zello, A week ago.

The only thing imo is Nikos story I can't really see that happening in 2008. I could see it taking place in 2004 maybe or 1999-2000 the only difference if it took place in 1999-2000 would be Niko's search for Darko would be much shorter and there really wouldn't be much stuff about terrorism aside from maybe the 1993 WTC bombing being mentioned and the 1995 Oklahoma city bombing. Dwayne would also be at the height of his power and gets arrested.

If it were to take place in 2004 everything would stay the same.

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#27

Posted A week ago

That feeling/vibe is expected due to the development time/changes during it. There's a lot of things in the game that make me think it was at one point set in the earlier 2000s, rather than later. Phones are not consistent: you can find some very early 2000s phones in some cutscenes, as well as modern in others. EFLC obviously had post-IV changes to make the game feel more stable in terms of time.

To be fair, even this has an explanation. Not everybody in 2008 had a smartphone, and I'd imagine that a lot of poorer people didn't even have the most modern phones. I had the phone I used back then since 2005! Kind of like how a lot of the cars were also pre-2008, people still drove those cars around even though they weren't the newest.

 

I think what happened was that when development began in 2004, all they had in mind for the setting was "modern day" with no specific year in mind besides whenever they'd finish the game, and this continued into each year it was in development until they reached 2008 and settled on that as the year because that's the year it was finally finished. Some stuff from the previous years still ended up being left in because they either weren't going to or couldn't change it in time to suit 2008.

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#28

Posted A week ago

You summed it up pretty well!


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#29

Posted 6 days ago

Around 2006-2008 ish because cars, music, settings of the game


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#30

Posted 6 days ago Edited by Aquamaniac, 6 days ago.

Interesting OP, it makes lots of sense, but I am sorry to tell you that your theory is ruined cause of EFLC, Johnny mentions that is a recession going on (0:36) and TLAD and TBOGT happens at the same time as GTA IV

 

 

The add-ons were released later and might have added some anachronism, btw. where they planned right from the beginning? It's great how the paths of three protagonists cross, was this planned right from the start?

 

As for the cars and music, most cars I think fit as well to an earlier setting, especially the German cars (Schafter = Mercedes W220, 1998-2005, Sentinel =  BMW E46 pre facelift, 1998 - 2001, Oracle = BMW E65, 2001-2008) fit also well if not better in an earlier setting, other cars look even much older. Actually I missed most songs that I associate with that time in the game but I listened most time to the Russian and Latin channel and didn't knew any of the songs.

 

Beginning with Niko's background I might take all this more seriously as the developers ever did.

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