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Game info

Grand Theft Auto Advance

Grand Theft Auto Advance
GenreAction Adventure
Developer / PublisherDigital Eclipse / Rockstar Games
Media1 x cartridge_small
Reviewed byndial
Grand Theft Auto Advance is the Gameboy Advance version of the famous platform hit (back in 2001) that truly realizes what made the series such a success on the big boy systems. For technical reasons, this version has returned to its roots and the top-down perspective, and the great success of the GTA series has been retained in this portable version.
Grand Theft Auto AdvanceYou play the role of Mike, who’s a member of the Mob but decided to quit. His partner in crime, Vinnie, has a few jobs for Mike to do before they both can leave for good. Vinnie is killed though in a car-bomb explosion, and Mike's the prime suspect. And now it's up to Mike to investigate why he was trapped, and who was responsible.
Although gameplay involves running missions throughout the city (named, The Liberty City) in sprawling streets & buildings, the game remains completely open for players to decide whether they'll stay the path or simply hanging around and be a menace to Liberty City. During your roaming, you may find (or steal) cars in order to get to place indicated by a mission. There are dozens of vehicles to find and drive such as compacts, sports cars, delivery trucks, taxis, swat vans, even tanks! But driving is only half of the game. The other half is, of course, pedestrian combat using weapons found or bought along your way. Missions involve blowing away your enemies and earn points by doing it in a set amount of time. Police forces will pursue you of course. Losing your precious health will cause you to start over the current mission.
In general, the game follows the classic gameplay of the GTA series, and this makes it an exciting arcade action title although not in 3D for the portable Gameboy Advance system. I can't say more about its gameplay and storyline, as it is already famous to the public on the big boy systems (such as the PlayStation and XBOX consoles).

For technical reasons limited to Gameboy Advance hardware, the game has returned to its roots and the top-down perspective, but the developers have made sure that the elements that have made the GTA series successful have been retained in this portable version. Gameboy Advance has a powerful strength in 2D graphics, and thus the whole game offers a top-down 2D environment for the players to explore Liberty City in colorful screens of 150+ colors at once. The camera remains at a fixed angle over the character and his vehicle, zooming dynamically in and out during the action to give you a better view. Although in 2D environment developers here have managed to throw in a few tricks to give the game a more 3D look and feel. Buildings that jut up into the sky actually move in perspective to the camera using a 3D shifting effect. Vehicles will actually lean to the left and right as their weight shifts through a turn and so on. Truly amazing that is!
Sound is great too, offering an enormous amount of sampled SFX, whilst main menu tunes are all of the original GTA series-style.
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Gameplay sample
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Hardware information

GameBoy Advance

GameBoy AdvanceCPU: ARM7TDMI at 16.78MHz , Z80 co-processor at 4-8MHz for Gameboy emulation
GRAPHICS: Custom 2D GPU, 15-bit RGB palette at 240x160 pixels max resolution
SOUND: Dual 8-bit DAC for stereo sound, supports multiple wave samples processed/mixed in software by the CPU
The GameBoy Advance (default) color palette
15bit RGB 32,768-color palette (512 to 32,768 on-screen colors in "character" or bitmap mode)
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