Lost in Los Santos: A GTA Journal, Part II - shootist2600 Blog - www.GameInformer.com
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Lost in Los Santos: A GTA Journal, Part II

My second session with Grand Theft Auto V played more like something Johnny Knoxville and his Jackass co-conspirators might have attempted had they been born into Los Santos. And had they been as unimaginative and cowardly as my virtual self.

Dump trucks can pass for people movers in Los Santos, only they take one way fares.

My first foray involved careening through city streets in a trash truck, which thankfully doesn't warrant a 911 call in this rough and tumble town. When I wasn't plowing through traffic, I was barreling into a propane tank. Mainly I just wanted to see what would happen, with predictable results. Consider this trash taken out.

I was helping this motorist test the solid frame construction of his vehicle.

Motorists got wise to my antics pretty quick this time around, not content with running away when I bash in their headlights. This time I was routinely run down, beaten up or run over. Speaking of, more people could put up a fight this time, landing series of punches. Even firefighters picked fights with me. What hotheads!

I carjacked this bus outside an emergency room, but what thanks do I get?

Buses can provide a solid ride through town so I borrowed this one from its compliant driver until, that is, he had a change of heart and decided to take it back while I was fumbling with screenshots of my short-lived prize.

I make falling off moving vehicles look easy. Nailed it!

Car surfing isn't what it used to be. A favorite pastime of mine in GTA, staying the course is more of a challenge in this sequel. I could rarely stay put for even one city block. I blame Armor All.

Flame retardant materials are not a hot commodity on the streets of Los Santos.

Like plowing into a propane tank, I was curious what would happen if I stood on top of a flaming trash can. If you said I'd catch on fire, you win! But what I don't think anyone could have predicted was how I'd set fire to this homeless encampment and its inhabitants. I'm always making friends wherever I go.

If I took a wrong turn it's only because the streets signs make no sense.

Getting lost in GTA is one of the pleasures of this franchise. And with vehicles that can scale most terrain, there are few places that aren't accessible and offer some kind of payoff including stunning panoramas.

Los Santos is a compelling remake of my hometown. From the California Incline to the Getty to the Civic Center there are a number of places I recognize in my travels. It's not a more direct reproduction like True Crime: Streets of LA (and of course it's not meant to be) but I'm still impressed by the details.

In fact, every locale benefits from an impressive level of detail whether a homeowner's possessions, a businesses materials or just the unique look and feel of every community. Los Santos is a fully realized urban setting.

A moonlit sky, a scenic ocean view and sweet jams. Another romantic night ... with coyotes (above, left).

Given the way I play GTA, I'll assume "Wasted" refers to my character's state of intoxication.

I tried to launch my car off a high peak but instead just sped down the mountainside in a pathetic, anti-climactic slide all the way to the bottom. Undeterred, I obtained a two-wheel mode of transportation that was more effective at creating some airtime.

Any other city and I'd be shocked that so many are driving the wrong way.

Driving against traffic always provides more of a rush than most other options. Though it's rarely so satisfying as when driving a large vehicle, smaller ones can provide more nimble threading of the vehicular needle if, that is, the driver is more skilled than I. 

Please keep all arms, hands and screams inside the vehicle at all times!

My next attempt at busjacking was more successful, though I was surprised at the lack of any wanted level, especially with passengers on board. In fact, I was also disappointed at the lack of a hostage scenario but maybe I'm thinking of Saints Row?

A bus buss.

I thought a head-on collision with another bus might provide some sparks but it hardly registered. Repeat ramming likewise produced scant results, and no wonder considering that bus engines are in the rear. Still, once other motorists got in between, all it took was driving over one to cause some pyrotechnics.

I often end up on train tracks, especially when alluding police. So naturally I wanted to see what would happen if I shared the road with a locomotive. Twice.

My Craigslist ad will say it's a rugged, reliable vehicle with character to match its custom appearance.

It took three train collisions before my car was put out of our misery. I think the problem was that even prior to the first crash it was damaged enough that it couldn't reach full speed for a proper head-on rendezvous.

All terrain is false advertising.

I finally ended up in the drink, but thankfully I wasn't sleeping with the fishes. I did, however, get to practice swimming, which from a gameplay standpoint works about as well as you'd expect, though I still haven't figured out if I can dive.

All in all I'm continually entertaining myself. I recommend getting lost in Grand Theft Auto V and the expansive open world of Los Santos. Then you might be able to better appreciate all the stupid things you can do. ; )

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