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GTAIV trailer irks NYC mayor

Officials in New York City voice disgust with new teaser for Rockstar's game, say similarities between game's setting and Big Apple are only visual.


Late last week, Rockstar Games released the first trailer for its highly anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV. Though bare on gameplay details, the trailer did reveal one of the game's most asked questions--its setting.

Advertisements, store names, and other items in the simulated city read "Liberty City," the very same city featured in the controversial franchise's break-out hit Grand Theft Auto III and debut on the PlayStation Portable. The city's layout and character were influenced by New York City, and modeling each games' setting after a real-world city has become a bit of a tradition. Vice City from GTAIII's follow-up was a nod to Miami, Florida, and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas was set on turf reminiscent of Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

A familiar-looking building takes up residence in Liberty City.
A familiar-looking building takes up residence in Liberty City.

However, this new look at Liberty City featured some landmarks that look incredibly similar to places only found in New York (which is where Rockstar Games' US headquarters are located), such as the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Empire State Building.

While most gamers were excited about going on a virtual crime spree through a next-generation Liberty City, New York officials are already voicing their disdain for the game and saying the similarities are only cosmetic, reports the Associated Press.

"The mayor does not support any video game where you earn points for injuring or killing police officers," New York mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a statement.

New York police commissioner Raymond Kelly doesn't care where the game is set. "It's despicable to glamorize violence in games like these, regardless of how far-fetched the setting may be," he told the AP.

Grand Theft Auto IV is scheduled for release this October. For more information, read GameSpot's previous coverage.

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