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When do you start doing side missions in GTA IV?

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In GTA IV, when do you start doing side missions?  Do you do them after the story or during the story?  I do it after the story, because it just adds to to the longevity and gives me something to look forward to after I've completed the story.

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Do them as you like. That's what's so good about GTA imo. Freedom! To this day I still have a few "Strangers & Freaks" encounters with Franklin to do to get 100% completion. I've bn playing since the release day & still never get bored with this game. Especially online. Happy New Years friend

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I do them as the story progresses. For example I do Roman's taxi missions as soon they're unlocked and complete them before "Roman's Sorrow". I also do the side missions for LJ and Brucie before "Roman's Sorrow" because it just feels like it makes sense particularly the ones for Brucie I do these before completing "No 1" as Niko states he doesn't want to work with Brucie professionally anymore.


I also do the Assassinations and Stevie's vehicles as soon as they're unlocked and before the end of the story. With the random characters, racing, most wanted and vigilante I'm more flexible with, but in general I complete all the side missions before the end to remain consistent with Niko's end goal of leaving the criminal life behind. Unlike most people playing post story has never really interested me so it doesn't bother me with the so called "lack of things to do" because the game is finished as far as I'm concerned.


To me the side missions feel better to compliment the story as it unfolds rather than saving them until the end. Just the way I like to play is all.

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Posted (edited)

I dunno why but during my first few playthroughs, I’d save the Assassination missions until the end. Looking back at it, it just feels weird since Niko more or less gave up his criminal life. And how he says “I’m a friend of Phil’s” even though they just cut ties


Nowadays I do side missions as soon as possible. In fact, I do some of them right after The Cousins Bellic (e.g. Most Wanted and pigeon hunting)

Edited by eCola

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I always do Side missions in ANY game with the story progress. In that way you can mix things up and prevent getting bored. Though in my first playthrough I always rush the stories because I want to see what happens in the end as quick as possible and avoid Spoilers. But in later playthroughs I try to do each side mission when it makes sense to do story wise. 

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Interesting to see how people do it. I might do the side missions as possible on my next playthrough as soon as possible to mix things up

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