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Parents' Guide to

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

By Aaron Lazenby, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

GTA continues with more sex, violence & drugs.

Game Windows , PlayStation 2 , Xbox 2002
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 38 parent reviews

age 12+

Enjoyable, impressive classic is still violent and mature to a certain extent

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002) follows Tommy, a criminal struggling to get on his feet after a massive failed drug trade. Under threat by his boss and other monsters he scrambles throughout Vice City to get that money back to his boss. Expect lots of violence, but keep in mind that the game is over 20 years old and has extremely dated graphics. There is also moderate language but no spoken use of strong profanities in dialogue and some suggestive imagery/content but no onscreen sexual acts are depicted. VIOLENCE: MODERATE In this game you play as a criminal with the ability to roam a city doing whatever you please. You can run over, shoot and beat down civilians and cops on the street as much as you want with the reward of a small amount of cash. Some blood comes out when people are shot and when people are killed, blood pools around their bodies. The blood is unrealistic due to the age of the game and the violence isn’t strong/graphic because of this. NPC deaths are always the same and aren’t stylized or explicit. Some missions in the game require stronger violence to be committed. In one mission, the player wields a chainsaw to chase down and kill a man. The player gets to keep the chainsaw after. When an enemy or person is killed with a chainsaw lots of blood comes out and splatters into the screen. The chainsaw kills are probably the strongest violence can get in older GTA games. This game has arguably stronger violence than San Andreas and GTA 3 but much less violence than GTA IV, GTA V and all of the other games. LANGUAGE: MODERATE There are quite a few uses of “sh*t” and “b*tch” in the game along with some uses of “godd*mn”, “a**hole” and “pr*ck”. There are also brief uses of “p*ssy” and “poontang” as well. In a song lyric, “f*ck” can briefly be heard. “f*ck” can also be glimpsed on a poster as well. This expletive, however, is never spoken in dialogue and replaced with “screwed”. SEXUAL CONTENT: MILD Prostitutes are seen roaming the streets in clad outfits but you cannot have sex with them. This isn’t graphic and it is never explained that they are prostitutes. There is dialogue in sexual nature. It is heard and shown that some female characters are prostitutes and say suggestive things to the player. There is also some brief sexual banter relating to the size of a man’s genitals and a scene that takes place in a porn studio yet nothing sexual is shown. This section of the games nature content is very, very mild even compared to GTA 3 and especially compared to San Andreas, GTA V and GTA IV. DRUG CONTENT: MILD Lots of reference to coke, dealing coke and selling it. Cocaine is also seen in bags lying on a table. The player struggles to drive in one mission after consuming a strange drug. Men smoke and drink occasionally. There are a few minor drug reference aside from the references to cocaine (which are frequent).
age 5+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (38 ):
Kids say (71 ):

If you've heard of the Grand Theft Auto series, it's likely you have formed an opinion on whether it's a fun, groundbreaking, and popular game, or if it's exploitative, x-rated schlock. The game's contents are so objectionable -- and nevertheless well-made and engaging -- that it can't help but be polarizing.

But as offensive as the scenarios presented in Vice City may be, the game's amazing detail, ease of play, deep story, and sprawling game environment make it easy to spend hundreds of hours exploring and exploiting in this adult-content world.

Game Details

  • Platforms: Windows , PlayStation 2 , Xbox
  • Available online?: Not available online
  • Publisher: Rockstar Games
  • Release date: October 29, 2002
  • Genre: Role-Playing
  • ESRB rating: M for Blood and Gore, Strong Language,Strong Sexual Content, Violence
  • Last updated: November 4, 2015

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