Pop quiz: what do chainsaws, Ray Liotta, and A Flock of Seagulls have in common? If you were playing video games ten years ago, you'll know the answer is Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. Owners of iOS and Android devices will soon be able to rack up Floridian wanted levels, as Rockstar Games' second entry in the groundbreaking GTA III trilogy is coming to mobile.
Released about a year after the ground-breaking Grand Theft Auto III, GTA: Vice City was another critically-acclaimed open world crime game from Rockstar. Taking place in a stylized version of 1980s Miami, the game built on its predecessor's success, with bigger gameplay and a bigger budget. It added well-known voice talent, including Liotta (as protagonist Tommy Vercetti), Tom Sizemore, Burt Reynolds, and Dennis Hopper. Vice City's soundtrack is one of the most memorable in video games, with tracks from Michael Jackson, Rick James, Quiet Riot, and Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five.
This is our mockup of Vice City on an iPhone 4S (screen: Rockstar Games)
Rockstar says that the mobile version of Vice City will be released later this (Northern Hemisphere) autumn to commemorate the original's tenth anniversary. It will feature native high-resolution graphics, and "several enhancements unique to the iOS and Android platforms."
This follows the late 2011 re-release of GTA III for mobile devices, and a mobile edition of the original Max Payne earlier this year. These titles, along with GTA: Chinatown Wars for iOS, have shown Rockstar's commitment to porting its iconic console games to smartphones and tablets.
No further details were announced, but last year's Grand Theft Auto III released to great acclaim for a mere US$5. It had some device compatibility limitations (most major devices from the previous year or so were supported); we can probably expect something similar with Vice City.
Completing the trilogy?
iPad owners will have to settle for Vice City now, and hope for San Andreas later (screen: Rockstar Games)
As beloved as GTA III and GTA: Vice City are, the real treat may come if Rockstar releases a mobile port of GTA: San Andreas. The cult classic – set in 1990s Southern California – tapped into the pop culture image popularized by movies like Boyz n the Hood and music videos by Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. If Rockstar sticks to its decade-later anniversary pattern, though, it may have to wait: the original version of San Andreas didn't launch until October, 2004.
Source: Rockstar Games