The Lost and Damned downloadable content for Grand Theft Auto IV goes beyond expectations with a hefty 2GB download that not only expands on the Grand Theft Auto IV game, it shows us Liberty City in a whole new light.
In The Loast and Damned downloadable content (DLC) you will leave Nico Bellic behind you as you take control of a new main character, Johnny Klebitz, a member of the biker gang called The Lost. As Johnny you find yourself in a a-typical Grand Theft Auto adventure featuring superior character develop, interesting missions all mixed into a fun and action packed package. The Lost and Damned is a new chapter in the Grand Theft Auto IV universe and we are more than happy to go through Liberty City one more time.
One of the most interesting aspects of Rockstar Games DLC is that it doesn’t follow the rules, breaking free of add-on extra content like a few new weapons, or a choice new vehicle choices, The Lost and Damned is a full out game built within Grand Theft Auto IV’s infrastructure. It is like Grand Theft Auto IV took a drink of miracle water and turned something old into something new and fresh. The Lost and Damned doesn’t really feel like GTA IV as it takes its own feel and shape with its gang mentality and new lead character. For those who didn’t particularly jive with Nico, Johnny might be a little more interesting as he operates on a thin line of morality. Nico and Johnny couldn’t more different from each other and this point is nailed home when their paths crisscross in one of the storylines. Rockstar North does a great job switching up the normal rags-to-riches storyline to something a little more truthful and solid.
One factor that helps differentiate the original game from the new content is the focus on gang mentality which goes along with main means of transportation in the game, the motorcycle. Having the gang ride around on their choppers through the city as a unified gang is a great feeling to add that expands upon the San Andreas feeling that Grand Theft Auto IV failed to capture the first time around. In the Lost and Damned you will ride your bike so much that it feels almost wrong to jump into the seat of a car. In the few moments when I hot-wired a four wheeled ride the game instantly felt strange which is an interesting when you look at the fact that I mainly used cars playing as Nico. The bikes in The Lost and Damned are top notch which makes breezing through the city all the more enjoyable. For some reason if you hated driving the bikes in Grand Theft Auto IV then you might want to give it another shot with this content.
Thicker than Blood
So what’s the deal with the Lost, Johnny, and the whole biker gang scene in Liberty City. It seems as Nico was going about his business earning cash for the Bellic dream, a seedy blood war was going on with two rival biker gangs which unfolds into the normal crooked politician, crooked cops, crooked drug deals storyline that we have seen before in Grand Theft Auto. The two main factions are The Lost, and The Angels of Death, are the focus of the content. The Lost is your side a group of middle aged men who are long past their rebellious prime and the Angels are fall into the same boat. Both sides have had a truths until Billy Grey comes back into the role of Lost President (gang leader). Billy turns peace into war with an old school mentality of raising hell with no remorse... basically, sh**t it hits the fan.
Riding along side Billy, Johnny will be forced into a role he wanted to leave in the past. It seems all the bikers in the Lost are living on borrowed time as Billy drives them further into chaos. The missions are spread over 22 missions that go from jail breaking a group of convicts to helping a exhibitionist politician dispose of one of his own family members. If you familiar with Grand Theft Auto, then you’ll get the picture here. For originality The Lost and Damned the missions don’t break new mould, it’s the personality that goes along with it that shapes the game. Grand Theft Auto, like all the version before it seem to continue on the same trend. That means if you’re not a fan, The Lost and Damned won’t change your perspective, and if you’re a die-hard then you’ll bite hard into the new content provided from Rockstar.
The More Blimps, The More Fun
For extra content aside from the main story, the Lost and Damned provides gamers with 50 Seagulls to off which is play off the games normal pigeon hunt. There are also a number of side missions to do that deal with collecting different motorcycles, clearing some laundry for Stubbs, and two other characters to gain some extra cash with. The Lost and Damned also creates their own version of Road Rash with motorcycle racing hotspots posted around the city. These races are extremely fun and seem to have a better air of competition compared to the normal street racing in IV.
Finally, you can join in some friendly bullet sharing in gang wars. Gang Wars are exactly what they sound like, you vs. another gang in various spots around Liberty City. Blimps activate the action and the mini-game ends when the bodies hit the floor.
New achievements are another part of the Lost and Damned giving gamers a little extra incentive to finish the game and partake in a few extras. Really, I didn’t expect more than a few new missions which Rockstar out did themselves with all these extras poured on top of the already full glass of gaming goodness.
Update 11/09 * The Lost and The Damned episode has been made available in disc format as part of the GTA: Episodes from Liberty City.
For 1600 MS points gamers will get a entirely new perspective on one of last years most engaging title. The Lost and Damned goes above the call of duty providing an excellent adventure back in the city that really never sleeps, Liberty City. If it wasn’t apparent by the body of this review, Rockstar has really pushed up our expectations of how Downloadable Content should be done. It seems Microsoft got what they paid for with a nice bonus package that will make even the most hardcore fanboy wish they switched teams. The Lost and Damned is definitely worth the purchase for anyone who wants to rediscover the fun and joy in Grand Theft Auto IV.
Final Score: 9.8
Reviewed by Downtown Jimmy | 02.26.09
- Full length expansion pack
- New lead character, whole new adventure
- Great writing, interesting storyline
- Gives Grand Theft Auto IV an entire new feel
- New mini-games, plus lots of extra missions
- Billy vs. Nico, is Billy's storyline better?
- Price might be a little too high for some
- Stand alone; Doesn't mix with your current game
- Now that we seen the Lost, we want more!