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Recommended Posts

This thread isn't anything new. Just the usual gushing over one of my favorite gaming experiences...ever.




Johnny's death was tragic for me because I grew to really appreciate him as the story stuck with me longer than I thought it would. The reason why I think Johnny is brilliant as a protagonist is that he's a combination of his surroundings. The gritty filter that covers the screen matches the dirty environment he always finds himself in. This game feels cold, being out on the bike all the time in the fall season, the overcast that adds to the filter unintentionally. All that being said, Johnny's demise adds another layer to the game. This is basically Johnny's last hurrah after succumbing to drugs and depression. GTA IV always feels dark, but Johnny's small moment in history edges it out with this new found information. Deep down, every GTA character is a scumbag. Johnny was exactly that, a scumbag. His relationship with Ashley had all kinds of red flags, both people struggled with drugs and seemed rather unloved by those around them. Ashley was a suicidal depressive and Johnny was an angry depressive.


We forget under the cloud of GTA comedy is something very brutal. Say you don't kill Ashley afterwards, she dies in a gangbang, probably as a directionless drug addicted prostitute. They didn't make it sound sad, but if you sit and think about how this turned out for every character, you just...sigh. Unlike San Andreas, the gang member wasn't portrayed well at all, these weren't nice people, they enjoyed beating the sh*t out of people and abusing alcohol, drugs, women, etc. These loveable dirtbags didn't get the mercy treatment. They got taken out like the scum they are. No silver lining, just a karmic circle coming to a close. Don't get me wrong, I think the writing and execution of the end of the Lost was done poorly. But the message is there, buried under a pile of crap.


The Lost & The Damned is Rockstar's most realistic portrayal of a criminal protagonist. This is what happens to these live fast, die young type of people. They die.




This is shown throughout the story. Jim, who seemed like a key cog in the plot & the group, had his life come to a halt, and not in a bang like say a Lance Vance, but a whimper. He is nothing but another dead member of the Lost. I do love the theory that he's not dead and took the money, but that's just a theory. The death of Jason came and went, an off-screen death (in TLAD, not IV, obviously) that wasn't remembered for too long afterwards. TLAD didn't go soft on the deaths, trying to evoke emotion, these guys do care about each other, but they've been so conditioned to be rugged and tough that losing friends is like water dripping off of a raincoat, it's not touching who they are. Angus isn't dead, but he might as well be in the eyes of the higher ups. Johnny, Terry & Jim show respect for Angus, but since he can't stand up and shoot a gun or ride a bike, he's half a man in their eyes. You hear that in Angus' voice, in the calls to Johnny throughout the story.


Gang members who support you in gang wars, they are people hanging up on a wall. Bullet sponges. They weren't high ranking members, they weren't in the 'know', so to speak. Young people trying to make a name for themselves. But they don't matter, that's a theme that plays through the story, that these people don't matter. Just a dot on the radar. Billy doesn't give a f*ck about slaughtering gang members over a bike, these people are psychotic at times, and at different levels - showing how destructive ones personality can be to a group.




The weather palette in this game also seems to be darker and have more frequent rain. I've noticed this in my playthroughs. Johnny's leather jacket has a distinct sound to it, when he's walking, it sounds like it's heavy, probably reinforced for the road. His face is rough, his nose is crooked, he's got scars, he looks worn out, tired, and drug addled. It's obvious that Johnny in TLAD and perhaps before was in a second wind. What I mean by that is, I don't think V is the first time Johnny's been a skinny drug addict. Seems like an off-and-on habit to me, at least that's how I interpret the dialogue. The bike has detailed sounds, and it's the best method of travel. You can feel how much better Johnny is on a bike when compared to Niko or Luis. The bike feels very heavy too, as it should. The way it drives through the slippery pavement is a nice touch of realism, both visually and sonically.


The radio stations are improved, IMO. Maybe not better, but they fit the vibe TLAD is trying to achieve. I found those guitar solos on LCHC to be a good way to get the blood pumping, to feel the moment of a chase. Or LRR, playing that when going for a scenic ride on the bike, and having it fit to a perfect moment. Stuffing Johnny in a car feels almost claustrophobic and...wrong? I can't tell if he's naturally a bad driver, but I always feel off driving cars in TLAD. I'd much rather call Clay up and have a Zombie delivered to me. The clubhouse always seems so real, the dialogue between members, people saying "Hey, Johnny" when you walk by, the activities upstairs...gives you an old west saloon feeling, because much like John Marston, The Lost & Damned are a relic of a bygone age.

Edited by Canadian Badass
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slimeball supreme

That was f*cking amazing.

  • Like 2

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It's good to have you back Mr Leone , that was a great post :^: .



And Billy Grey is the best antagonist of the HD Era .




My PS3 EFLC doesn't work , so i can't play TLAD or TBOGT anymore :( lol





Fanart :





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Xing of Virtue

I think the "atmosphere" thingy has been beated to death. Lol


But in all seriousness, that was truly marvelous.



Edited by Xing of Virtue
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American Viking

Great descriptive writing sir. You really set the tone in the first paragraph and the rest was like poetry to my ears. So true friend, so tragic.

Edited by American Viking
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Algonquin Assassin

Reading this really makes me want to play TLAD now. Awesome stuff buddy.:)

GTA IV Signature V4 by Lettermaniac on DeviantArt

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