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Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned

And, of course, there’s multiplayer. The Lost and Damned brings no fewer than nine modes to accompany its single-player campaign, six of which are completely new. Of these, the most fun is easily Witness Protection, which tasks one team (the Lost) with murdering state’s witnesses before the other team (the SWAT-like NOOSE agents) can transport them to safety in an armored bus. Running a close second is the Race mode, which is just a multiplayer take on the clobber-happy Road Rash races of the single-player game.

Lone Wolf Biker is a hellish game of tag for up to 16 crazed bikers, Own the City tasks players with taking over patches of turf (which are then defended by computer-controlled guards) and Club Business is a biker-flavored take on the main game’s objective-based Mafiya Work mode. Finally, Chopper vs Chopper is an insane, two-man cat-and-mouse game between a lone motorcyclist and the pilot of a heavily armed attack helicopter. It’s fun, especially if you’re good at piloting the game’s choppers and only have one friend to play with.

All of this comes for the princely sum of 1600 Microsoft Points (or $20, or around £13), which is of course on top of what you’ve already spent for Grand Theft Auto IV, needed to play the DLC. Considering what it offers for that price – which, for the record, is an entirely new game set in the same city – it’s impossible to give The Lost and Damned anything but a full recommendation. The story and acting are great, the missions are enjoyable and riding around on the retooled bikes is the most fun it’s been in any GTA since Vice City. It’s not going to change the minds of any Niko-haters, but anyone itching to delve back into Liberty City should grab it now.

Fallout 3: Operation Anchorage? Yes. While Operation Anchorage offers up a whole new area to explore, it’s too short and limited to really stand up to The Lost and Damned’s beefy narrative and raft of cool additions.

Fable II: Knothole Island? Oh god yes. Knothole Island’s brief run time and single quest barely qualify it as a mission pack. If Lost and Damned is a sandwich, then Knothole Island is a carrot stick.

Mass Effect: Bring Down the Sky? Yes. While introducing a new race and a new world is nothing to sniff at, the Bring Down the Sky expansion was, ultimately, just a quest add-on. Lost and Damned is more substantial by far.

The Elder Scrolls IV: The Shivering Isles? It’s a draw. Both are top-notch productions, and in terms of the amount of new content offered, this is the only DLC add-on that can really compare with The Lost and Damned. Because both offer so much, and because the one you like better will invariably depend on whether you prefer open-world RPGs or open-world crimesplodaganzas, it’s almost impossible to declare a clear winner.

Feb 17, 2009

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55 comments

  • Greed - July 2, 2009 10:40 p.m.

    First!
  • Forsakenday - May 28, 2009 11:52 a.m.

    I got this recently and I love it. Its so awesome Johnny is badass. Get it if you got the money.
  • Japanjack - February 24, 2009 5:12 a.m.

    :/ Everything on Live Marketplace is getting more and more expensive . .
  • iluvmyDS - February 20, 2009 6:49 p.m.

    @understudybass: This is a multiplatform site. Just because Mikel is the Playstation editor doesn't mean he only reviews PS3 games. He took journalism for a reason. Besides, wouldn't only doing PS3 games make him "biased"? ;]
  • iluvmyDS - February 20, 2009 6:46 p.m.

    That's a lot of funny money to spend. Thanks Microsoft. It sounds worth it though.
  • Gameguy151 - February 19, 2009 1 p.m.

    just for the record, the "Assault Shotgun" is the DAD-X Protecta out of Army of Two. and for everyone wondering, TLAD gets that one point taken off for it's completely abrupt ending...
  • otharu - February 19, 2009 12:11 a.m.

    wow by minute 1:37 Niko appeared (i think)
  • fatcat275 - February 18, 2009 7:55 p.m.

    makes me wish i had x-box live even more. and a 360.
  • MilitaryRaiden - February 18, 2009 1:19 p.m.

    Great review and the added comparison between other DLCs an excellent option which keeps things in perspective: TLAD might be a game expansion but it sets the bar for DLC from now on - it's the closest thing to a whole new game and is much better than many games already on the market. I'm playing the game, taking my time and enjoying it immensely - the radio talk, the obscene variety of extras, the new weapons, music, bike-handling, the characters - amazing!! A must-buy-and-download all the way. But the first couple of hours trying to by-pass an idiotic region-lock for the dlc from 360 accounts across the map -from Switzerland and France to Australia along with some UK residents- was hellish and downright unnerving. Thank god M$ quickly resolved this issue...
  • theschwartzb - February 18, 2009 11:45 a.m.

    I wish that people like KakashiXIII would stop saying first on the comments, what is so great about being the first to comment, other than the fact that you spent your time hunting for an article on this site that had not been commented on yet? It makes you look especially moronic when you type FIRST OMFG ZOMG FIRSST FIRST when you actually are second.
  • Cwf2008 - February 18, 2009 3:40 a.m.

    Oh dear how else are videogame companies gonna extort money off crappy games? And i thought extortion was illegal anyway...so how do bungie and rockstar get away with it?
  • BeardGuy - February 18, 2009 3:26 a.m.

    So I was all set to download this today but my 360 crashed for the FOURTH time last night. How's that for bad timing? Does anyone else suffer from nervous breakdowns when their 360 dies?
  • GamesRadarMikelReparaz - February 18, 2009 3:08 a.m.

    @KillDrone: the You'll Love/You'll Hate sections of our reviews aren't meant to be taken as tacit summaries of why the games are getting the scores they're getting. They're an opportunity to sum up key issues, or to praise/dis/just generally recognize anything we didn't address during the review proper. If you want to know why Lost and Damned got a nine instead of a 10, read the review instead of just zeroing in on the last box.
  • super-saint - February 18, 2009 2:58 a.m.

    im dowlaoding it right now... unfotunalty its at at 40% and now i really really wnat to play it
  • Amatarasu - February 18, 2009 2:02 a.m.

    also,WHY THE HELL IS THIS TAKING SO LONG TO DOWNLOAD?!
  • heartskuppy - February 18, 2009 1:45 a.m.

    looks like i'll be renting a 360 some time in the near future.
  • Samael - February 18, 2009 1:37 a.m.

    Downloaded it today, very fun so far.
  • Ravenbom - February 18, 2009 1:15 a.m.

    Playstation Editor Wikiparaz reviewing an Xbox exclusive! Bias! GamesRadar is totally in Microsoft's pocket! Bias! :P j/k Semi-serious, shouldn't you give this a 10 so Rockstar doesn't hate you like they hate OXM for the GTAIV 9.5?
  • Ddz53 - February 18, 2009 12:50 a.m.

    Seems great
  • jamminontha1n2 - February 18, 2009 12:43 a.m.

    I hope they make a video guide of how to find the seagulls.

Showing 1-20 of 55 comments

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