Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

Game review by
Aaron Lazenby, Common Sense Media
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Game Poster Image
GTA continues with more sex, violence & drugs.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 35 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 75 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Stealing, killing, and shooting are all a part of this gangster lifestyle.

Violence

The object is to shoot, kill, and beat up as many people as possible. There is gang warfare, beatings, drive-by shootings, killing of innocent bystanders, bloody and grotesque deaths.

Sex

Explicitly sexual -- you can be serviced by hookers.

Language

Constant swearing is a part of this world.

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Unapologetic drug use. Some alcohol consumption as well.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this game features all manner of violence, drug use, and foul language. Kids who play this game will be able to steal cars, kill a prostitute after having sex with her, shoot cops, and sell drugs. While clever pop culture references to the 1980s make the game creative and appealing, the graphic nature of its storyline makes it shocking. Parents also need to know that the star rating given to this game is based on quality of gameplay within this adult genre of gaming and not an endorsement of the violence within the game.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byparentof3 April 9, 2008

not that bad

Well, my son recently begged for this game saying it wasn't as bad as the other titles in this series. I soon found out it really wasn't. It does have... Continue reading
Parent Written byPlague January 8, 2010

GTA: Vice City

Not as good as GTA 3, but still fun. As long as they have the Rino tank in the game, im a happy guy.
Teen, 14 years old Written byJ-dog21 June 18, 2009

Onne of the cleaner GTA's

THis is one of the cleanest GTA's out there but you can search very hard and try to break into a stripclub but unless you try to find it it wont happen, ot... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old September 4, 2010

What's it about?

The controversial Grand Theft Auto series continues with GRAND THEFT AUTO: VICE CITY. And while it changes locales from the previous entry, it doesn't abandon the series' trademark recipe of drugs, sex, and violence. Players control Tommy Vercetti, a recognized member of a big-city crime family, recently released after time in prison. Rather than returning home, Tommy settles in Vice City, a near-perfect replica of mid-1980s Miami. With a surging drug trade, profitable prostitution rings, and brutal violence, Vice City looks like a perfect fit for a guy like Tommy. Sure enough, it's not long before players are pimping women, selling drugs, and strong-arming rivals with the help of shotguns, AK-47s, Molotov cocktails, and a deadly chainsaw (among other weapons).

Is it any good?

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.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the presence of adult content in video games. Does the interactive nature of the experience make it more influential than books or movies? Is it appropriate for game developers to address such mature subjects as drug use and prostitution in what was once considered a children's medium?

Game details

  • Platforms: Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox
  • Price: $49.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Rockstar Games
  • Release date: October 29, 2002
  • Genre: Role Playing
  • ESRB rating: M for Blood and Gore, Strong Language,Strong Sexual Content, Violence

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