Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars Review

By , on January 19, 2010

GTA: Chinatown Wars
Download on the AppStore
5 out of 5


  • A fully featured AAA title for the DS.
  • Minor graphics upgrade and full custom audio options.


  • Steering hasn't improved in this version and feels sluggish to respond.


While it's no GTAIV, fans of the original GTA series can hardly go wrong here with hours of gameplay in the main story and endless fun in the sandbox environment.

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

Grand Theft Auto has always been a magnet for controversial topics, but one GTA above all others received serious attention because it dared to place you in the shoes of a drug trader. Originally out on the Nintendo DS, Chinatown Wars (GTA:CW) is a hand-held masterpiece that's now available for the App Store.

Jumping in to the game is easy with sensitive and simple to identify virtual pads and multi function buttons that hide when not required. Feature moments of the game will have you touching and tapping the screen for mini-games required to hot-wire cars or complete missions. These moments do add some extra depth to the gameplay, but can eventually feel more like time sinks as you repeatedly perform tasks.

GTA:CW uses a classic isometric view that is straight out of the original GTA games and is combined with a stylized 3D aesthetic that's varied and detailed. There's definitely an improvement over the Nintendo DS's graphics, but it's still not quite as smooth as the PSP version. Most of the music from the original version has survived in the App Store version, but more importantly a custom radio option is available for use with iTunes.

In many ways, GTA:CW for the App Store has combined the best of both worlds from the Nintendo DS and Sony PSP versions creating a unique amalgamation for the iPhone. With hours of great classic GTA gameplay to enjoy and a tongue-in-cheek story to follow, this is an easy must recommend.


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