I agree! This, in my opinion, is one of the best titles out there. Everything in it is so well done. The story is very interesting to follow, and I simply can't get enough of it. I got the game a few months ago, and played it through three or four times since then, plus some arcade modes, and so on. The mechanics are absolutely top-notch and fluidic, it's not even funny. The transition between cut-scenes and gameplay is seamless, you don't notice it at all. I cannot believe that MP3 sold less than Rockstar expected. And then the fact that it didn't receive any considerable awards, as far as I know. This has to be one of the most underrated games of all time, I'm not joking.
Indeed. I think, ironically, MP3 suffered from being developed by R*. People just expected GTA: Brazil and not story-driven linear shooter. Also, the GTA V hype R* started with its first trailer right in the middle of MP3's marketing campaign backfired. Instead of buying MP3 to get a dose of dat R* magic, people may have decided to wait for V, not knowing it was so far away. And I remember people here hated MP3 a lot because R* didn't release any info about V since its first trailer and focused on MP3 instead. Or maybe it's just that shooter crowd is just casual (and I don't mean that as an insult). They don't look for new games and original experiences and are happy with playing just CoD and Battlefield all the time. Shooter has to make a heck of a splash to get people interested.
Apart from things you mentioned, one rather minor, but very important thing made me like MP3
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