GTA 4You’ve heard of the franchise, and you’ve probably played a few of the games. Even if you haven’t, you’ve certainly heard the controversy. “Grand Theft Auto” has become synomymous with “Joe Lieberman soapbox”, and Rockstar probably loves all the publicity they get for it.

Grand Theft Auto IV represents a quantum leap in the game, almost certainly the biggest leap ever—even bigger than when the game went from its 2D top-down perspective to a 3D third-person viewpoint.

What makes Grand Theft Auto IV so radical is that it takes full advantage of the power available from modern gaming systems, the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. Yes, that’s right, you actually have a reason to buy a Playstation 3 now, and an excuse to ditch your 5-year old system.

Just be sure you have plenty of time to lose to a video game, and that you’re not taking any psycho-active drugs.

Pick it up for $59.99 for the Xbox 360 or Playstation 3, or you can show your chumpness fierce dedication by springing $89.99 for the Special Edition (Xbox 360 or Playstation 3), which includes various plastic extras you’ll wonder why you ever bought in the first place a few years down the road.

Need a next-gen system? Grab a 40GB Playstation 3 for $399.99 or pick up one of three Xbox 360 configurations:

  • Xbox 360 Core Arcade $279.99 – Gives you the bare minnimum, you’ll need to bring your own HDMI or Component cable if you’re hooking it up to a high-def TV.
  • Xbox 360 Core Arcade $349.99 – Probably the one to get, includes a component cable (but no HDMI) and a 20GB hard drive. Also packs a headset (GTA IV can be played online, so you might want this).
  • Xbox 360 Core Arcade $449.99 – Upgrades the hard drive to 120GB and includes an HDMI cable. Also has a better looking black case instead of white.

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