MobyGames Classic: Grand Theft Auto 3 community stories

Rockstar's genre-defining Grand Theft Auto 3 is inducted into the list of classic titles. Read stories from Shacknews readers regarding 2001's open-world title.


On Wednesday, we revealed the next MobyGames Classic title was Rockstar's genre-defining Grand Theft Auto 3.

Released in late 2001, Grand Theft Auto 3 was lauded for its sandbox-like environment that continues to help shape games made today. Ten years after launch, the game has undoubtedly left its mark on the industry as one of the best games ever made. After the break, the Shacknews community shares their stories and impressions of Grand Theft Auto 3, and answer why they feel it's deserving of a spot on our list of classics.

"The first time I ever played GTA3 was with my skeptic brother watching," Shacker greasyjohn wrote. "One of the first things I did was knock over a chain link fence--showcasing the amazing looking pseudo-physics)--and steal a Patriot [a Humvee-style vehicle] ... just as "Fade Away" by Craig Gray came on [the radio], I can think of no better way to enter such a virtual world."

"Maybe I'm remembering it wrong but I remember GTA3 being a lot less scripted than later games," Shacker Mecha Tofu Pirate, remembering mission structure he disliked from later games in the franchise.

A large part of the charm, however, was playing with the world. Blowing up half of the vehicles on the street, sending the police swarming in your direction, and asking yourself 'How long can I survive?'

"Hard to concentrate on missions because I keep on getting distracted with just screwing around," Shacker sgtsanity summarized.

Grand Theft Auto 3 invited players to come for the story they crafted, but stay for the adventure the player could make for themselves. To this day it's an outstanding title that is available to play on a multitude of platforms, including mobile devices. That is what makes a classic. A title that remains memorable and sustainable as an overall experience for years after launch.

Grand Theft Auto is a series that continues to excite fans, with Rockstar garnering the industry's attention earlier this week following the release of Grand Theft Auto 5's first trailer.

Check out the original Chatty thread for more stories and memories from GTA3.

Grand Theft Auto 3 on

After leaving San Andreas and going on a crime spree throughout the country, the GTA3's protagonist (Claude) and his girlfriend Catalina head to Liberty City to continue a life of crime. During a bank heist, Claude is betrayed, shot and left for dead. After recovery he finds himself in prison but soon breaks free when a Colombian cartel ambushes the prison van to free an ally secured with Claude. With his new found freedom, Claude goes on the hunt for revenge on the mean streets of Liberty City.

MobyGames Classic is our chance to look back at the games that helped shape the video game industry with the help of our sister site It combines a short history lesson on the title and anecdotes from the Shacknews community.

From The Chatty
Hello, Meet Lola