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Grand Theft Auto Released For Free

Hemos posted more than 11 years ago | from the ka-blam-ka-blam dept.

Games 443

Snover writes "It's already incredibly difficult to actually get to the site due to its extreme popularity, and can only get worse after the inevitable slashdotting, but Rockstar Games has updated their original hit, Grand Theft Auto, to run on 'modern' computers and released it for free to the public. It'd be nice if more gaming companies did this! Unfortunately, it (of course) is Windows-only and utilises the propietary DirectX API, but hey, free game for anyone that's paid the Microsoft tax! (The download speed, once you actually manage to connect to the site, is quite excellent -- it's maxing out my 2Mbps connection.)" Ah, what a classic game.

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443 comments

BRAVO! BRAVO! (5, Insightful)

Omikr0n (656115) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467045)

It's really great to see software companies finally respecting their loyal customers enough to "reward" them with a free game.

I've seen the opposite happen, where games are first freeware, then changed to a shareware or other license because they realized all the oodles of cash they could make off of it. I don't think that is a good practice and if more companies follow Rockstar's exmaple, they will have many more happy gamers that will gladly support their other products by purchasing them legitimately.

Ahh...the memories.

Re:BRAVO! BRAVO! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467117)

If Rockstar weren't so successful, do you think they would be so generous?

Not everybody has the ability to dedicate time to projects that aren't profitable. It's great that Rockstar does, but don't spite small-time developers for having to eat, sleep indoors, etc.

Re:BRAVO! BRAVO! (1)

deadcatphan (654481) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467126)

No joke. I've always been a huge supporter of just about any company who will release a game for free and/or release it's source. I can't say that those games actually still make them money or not, because I haven't ever looked into that, but it's a huge boost towards community support for the company whenever this happens.

Re:BRAVO! BRAVO! (1)

Pike65 (454932) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467184)

I'm not sure I count as a "loyal customer" as I've never bought a GTA game in my life, but it's still cool.

I suppose the only reason more companies don't do this is simply the effort involved in updating them for modern systems - especially bearing in mind that they see no return. But I don't see any reason for companies not to release the source of their older games (a la Quake [quakesrc.org] ), and let the communities around the games update them.

Re: unfortunately... (3, Insightful)

op51n (544058) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467223)

I get the feeling this may be just something that comes from Rockstar being a relatively cool company. Their UK offices are just round from my brother's in Leith, and from their thankyou note to the pond in VC (the pub down the road from the office, and best pub I've ever been to) they do seem fairly cool guys.
Now, if more companies were like this, and less corporately minded then maybe we'd see more of this kind of thing.

Eh... (2, Interesting)

Mekanix (127309) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467254)

*What* loyal customers would be rewarded with this? If they're loyal, they already bought the game!

Woohoo! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467049)

Downloading it now at 234KB/sec. Ah, the joy of subscription [slashdot.org] !

Re:Woohoo! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467099)

Half the shit on slashdot aint worth a penny.

Re:Woohoo! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467129)

None of it is worth anything except time and interest, and only sometimes that.

So that's what I dedicate to /. - time and interest. Money? NIGGA PLEASE!

Sucker (3, Funny)

javacowboy (222023) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467056)

Damn, I already paid for it :(

Re:Sucker (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467211)

Unless you didn't like the game, I don't see why you feel bad about having payed for the game. I remember buying the original Quake a long time ago. Now, it's basically free. That's fine by me. It was fun while it lasted back in the day.

wine(x) might work (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467058)

But then concidering wine(x) is crap, most probably not.

"Concidering" (5, Funny)

Trurl's Machine (651488) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467186)

But then concidering wine(x) is crap, most probably not.

I'm not a native speaker, so I am always happy to learn new idioms. Does "concidering" mean "drink some cider together"? Please concider this with me!

This game rox (1)

Azureflare (645778) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467059)

It's great to see such an awesome game being released for free. This was the second GTA I played (I played gta2 first) and I must say that this one was a much different experience. Besides that, I feel that other gaming companies should follow this initiative and release free, "modern" updated versions, like this one, of classic games (Wolf3D, monster bash, commander keen, etc. come to mind...Man, those were the days!) There are a lot of good classic games that are in need of an update. Besides, isn't part of programming updating the software you write?

Oh well, since most of them won't make money by doing it, probably they won't...but here's some wishful thinking ;)

Re:But what about the others... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467131)

I want Commander Keen !!!

Re:This game rox (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467215)

Bravo!

I think that you should work for free too.

Should Microsoft.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467222)

..continue updating Windows 3.11 for all eternity? RedHat, their 1.0 release?

Hell, should Ford continue to produce parts for the Model T?

There ain't no such thing as a free lunch, and as such, programmers working for you need to be paid.

Any company that pays their programmers to work on free software, when the company's only source of revenue is selling software, will be visited by the Stockholder Inquisition. And rightfully so.

Once in awhile, you could probably get away with diverting a few programmers to work on something like this. It could be a useful PR ploy. (In this case, I can't see that happening. The latest GTAs have been selling like hotcakes, and if they make another, that will sell just as well from the looks of it.)

Now, what companies should consider doing is releasing the source itself, and washing their hands of the entire thing (save, perhaps, for a 'no profit for you!' license.)..

This gives them a PR boost (yay), saves money by not wasting the time of their programmers (yay!), and ultimately, stocks the industry with new talent. There's plenty of people out there who'd like to get into working on games. Buying a license to an engine usually isn't a good idea for them - they're usually too expensive and will be overwhelming.

If they had something to tinker on, for free, that'd be great. After all, in gaming, like any other programming discipline, the basics are the basics.

GTA free - thats great but... (4, Funny)

AtomicX (616545) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467061)

Can anyone afford the OS to run it on?

Re:GTA free - thats great but... (0, Troll)

op51n (544058) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467081)

you mean people pay for windows!?
Hell I thought that's why the only anti-piracy method was the "please do not make copies of this disc" warning and microsoft's outstanding fascism.

Re:GTA free - thats great but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467158)

I didn't pay much for Windows2000. I got it through school for $10. Sure, they have an exclusive technology deal with them and I'm sure part of my technology fee goes to them, but who cares? I have to pay it anyway and I get reimbursed by my company. ;-) Best thing of all is the CD doesn't have/need a serial number so I've installed it on at least a dozen computers of mine and my families! hehe. Fuck microsoft.

Re:GTA free - thats great but... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467227)

Last time I checked, my copy of Windows was free too.

Grand Theft Slashdotting (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467062)

Three comments and their out.

Its already freely available (4, Informative)

chrisseaton (573490) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467064)

Here [freeloader.com] , along with GTA London and GTA 2.

Re:Its already freely available (2, Informative)

rich_r (655226) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467086)

However the site does require a subscription to download. Any other mirrors kicking about? (I'm on google now, but I'm sure some have beaten me to it!)

Re:Its already freely available (1)

chrisseaton (573490) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467097)

I think it's subscription as in the NYT sense (or it was .5 years ago when I downloaded GTA)

Re:Its already freely available (1)

rich_r (655226) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467143)

A moot point now, seeing as they've suspended new subcriptions due to sheer numbers!

c'est la vie!

Re:Its already freely available (1)

Kashif Shaikh (575991) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467165)

Well, you can't create a subscription since they're overhauling the system. Won't be availabe 'til spring they say.

Re:Its already freely available (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467121)

This is probably the DOS version though, and not the 'updated'(directx) version.. I doubt the old one runs well on nt based os'es(especially with 3d support, glide was all it had).. Hopefully this new one has '3d' support

uh oh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467068)

looks like we hijacked their server.

well, not free... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467071)

of course, you have to pay for your bandwidth. Not only that, but if you don't subscribe to Slashdot, you don't get to download the game 'in the future' and have to compete with all the bourgoise.

already been done... (5, Informative)

dj_paulgibbs (619622) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467073)

See Freeloader [freeloader.com] .

When I last looked at the site (a year ago, admittidly), it had GTA1 up for download then.

Quick look shows it has GTA2, Hidden & Dangerous, and many others available for free download. All you have to do is watch some ads on your screen whilst the files download.

Re:already been done... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467195)

That is if you subscribe to the service, and they are not accepting anyone at this point, our luck, when they do, the IDSA "Comprised of Microsh** & Vivendi-Universal" will sue them out of existance.

Put it on Kazaa! (5, Insightful)

revscat (35618) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467078)

Since nobody around here really gives a crap about what the various companies think anywho, would someone please put this up on Kazaa or one of the other P2P networks? If we can make a habit of doing this when binaries are available then future /.ings might be somewhat abated.

Re:Put it on Kazaa! (1)

iosmart (624285) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467152)

lol, or just contact iosmart and have him mirror it. the whole animatrix adventure only cost me a mere 16GB (out of 500GB) and that was a pretty big file...

Re:Put it on Kazaa! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467212)

Good thinking. You're a master abater.

Re:Put it on Kazaa! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467216)

Spreading it on Kazaa is of course a jolly good idea, but I could imagine that a lot of companies would still like to have the exclusive right to distribute the game themselves, even if it is for free. Imagine all the traffic this game must generate to their site which basically is a big advertising board exclusively for their own products. This is a kind of PR stunt that actually works!

Another company that has done this is cinemaware (www.cinemaware.com). I came to their site to download the freely available Amiga version of Defenders of the Crown, and ended up buying the remake. I still swing by their site every once in a while to check for news on their promised remake of Wings, which I'll also buy when it is released. Pretty good move by them, wouldn't you say?

BTW, GTA has always been available on Kazaa/Direct Connect etc, even before it was legal to distributable it. /lars

wow (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467079)

this site has already been shacknewsed, bluesnewsed, posted on several big news forums, and likely more high traffic locations. now slashdotted!

oh the pain.

Nice editorializing (3, Funny)

Soporific (595477) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467083)

"Free game for anyone who paid the Microsoft tax?"

A little bitter about this are we?

~S

Society loves violence (-1, Troll)

(1337) God (653941) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467084)

Anyone else think these kinds of games are partly the reason why we're going to invade Iraq, North Korea, and various African countries once we're done there?

Violence breed violence and encourages hate. Why do we love to hate?

Re:Society loves violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467105)

Go back to Massachusetts you tool...

Re:Society loves violence (5, Insightful)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467106)

Anyone else think these kinds of games are partly the reason why we're going to invade Iraq, North Korea, and various African countries once we're done there?

Nope. We were fighting wars long before video game came about; they just make us good at using the drones.

Violence breed violence and encourages hate. Why do we love to hate?

Because hate encourages violence, they hate us, and thus they visit violence upon us and we visit violence upon them.

This is why "love thy enemy" is such an important part of our culture. We bomb Afghanistan out of the stone age, and then hold their hand as they struggle to sort out all the damage their ex-ruler did. We did the same thing with Japan and Germany, and we'll do the same thing with Iraq.

Re:Society loves violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467114)

honestly, how many of these games do you think G Dubbuah has played? Comeon now, Americans have been subjected to violent movies for years, but you think that video games are the reason behind our problems with Iraq?

Perhaps you haven't noticed... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467115)

but people are playing the exact same games everywhere else in the world (the guys who did GTA are Scottish, BTW). Yet for some reason you don't see Scotland bombing every little country they can get away with, do you? Violent video games are not the reason.
Or do you think Saddam Hussein started making WMD's after too many rounds of Command & Conquer..?

MODERATE PARENT +1 INSIGHTFUL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467132)

It's well-said and true.

Re:Society loves violence (4, Interesting)

Psx29 (538840) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467133)

Then how come the most popular games in the world are "The Sims" and "Myst"?

Re:Society loves violence (2, Funny)

AntiNorm (155641) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467147)

Anyone else think these kinds of games are partly the reason why we're going to invade Iraq, North Korea, and various African countries once we're done there?

Let us all join hands and sing "Kumbaya" then...

(hint: that won't help)

Re:Society loves violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467153)

God made us violent because that's what he wants. It's in our very DNA. Without violence, we could not gather food and we would die; For all our food is obtained through the destruction of life. Even though most Americans do not kill your own food anymore, things still must die for you to survive; The job of killing them has just been passed on to others. Do not hate violence. Without it you would not exsist.

Re:Society loves violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467159)

WOW, 4th grade, simpleton view of life. bravo ! way to stay young

Re:Society loves violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467181)

Well, did bush play GTA?

Re:Society loves violence (4, Insightful)

peeping_Thomist (66678) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467207)

Violence breed violence and encourages hate. Why do we love to hate?


I'm all in favor of trying to root out the causes of hate, but it's annoying when you ask a question like "why do we love to hate?" as though you yourself were a pixie floating free above the human condition who had never actually hated anyone or anything. The roots of hatred go a lot deeper than video games.

Actually, Europeans have had violence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467220)

Actually, Europeans have had violence selectively bred out of them for centuries, through emigration, genocide and mass starvation. Violence, self defense and gun ownership are all negative traits according to the Hague based New World Order, and Europe is the beta test in reducing humans to sheeple.

The initial secular humanist cabal was satisfied using the colonies as a safety valve to eliminate violence prone individuals, figuring that the natives in the colonies (Zulus, Iroquios, Bantu, Thugges, Pollywogs and Slantees) would kill most of them, and leave the more harmless ones in Europe. Not believing in God, they didn't take God into account, who so generously provided a fecund new Jerusalem in America, where right thinking God Fearing men could subdue and populate a whole continent, Kentucky long rifle in one hand, Bible in the other.

Once the colonies were full or free, the ruling cabal had to find another way to get rid of the free thinking men who worshipped God and not man. It's not a coincidence that the most fervent Christians in the British Empire suffered a British genrerated Potato Famine in the 1870's.

Finally, the humanists attempted genocide to purge Europe of men who would defend their rights with their lives. The Jews were the first to be targetted, one only needs a cursory glance at the history of Isreal to realize what a fierce opponent to soul degrading secular humanism the Jewish race would be.

Which pretty much brings us to today. The New World Order, based in the HAgue, is slowly grinding down Europenis into sub-humans, preventing them from fully achieving their full human potential, including the ability to fight for what you believe in. Teletubbies and happy, passive, non-violent vide games are part of the insidious conspiracy. Fortunately, there are enough God Fearing, right thinking men who will fight for the right for men to worship God instead of nebulous concepts like Gaia, ecology, feminism, astronomy and humanism in America, Israel and Saudi Arabia. For those of us blessed enough to live in one of God's chosen places, all we can do is pray for the poor souls being tortured in the soul crashing socialist hellhole that is Europe, and perhaps ship them a few handguns enclosed in the cases of Budweiser that we ship overseas to sate the European hunger for fine, beechwood aged corn beer.

Re:Society loves violence (0, Troll)

josh crawley (537561) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467241)

---Anyone else think these kinds of games are partly the reason why we're going to invade Iraq, North Korea, and various African countries once we're done there?

We shoulda nuked all those sorry-asses when we had the chance. ALl THEY DO IS bring a pock on this Earth!!

---Violence breed violence and encourages hate. Why do we love to hate?

Fuck you too, Appeaser!! NUKE EM ALL!! And let God sort 'em out!!!!!!

(tounge applied to cheek)

Does everything have to be about MS? (5, Insightful)

theNote (319197) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467088)

How does a summary of a story about a free game become a microsoft bashing opportunity?

This is just about the most childish story post I have ever seen Hemos.

Re:Does everything have to be about MS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467228)

I agree with you. All slashdot has become is a forum for linux geeks to bash Microsoft.

Don't you know you'll rot in hell? (5, Funny)

numbski (515011) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467090)

Free software is evil.

Cop killing video games are evil! You have to repent to the lord Gates and be forgiven of your sins, washed away by the blood of the lame (Jobs). :P

Actually, never played the game myself. I remember ALL of the churches and law enforcement agencies in my area pitched a raving hissy fit though.

GTA Music (1)

Corbin Dallas (165835) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467100)

Are they releasing the entire game, or just an updated executable? What made the original so good was the soundtrack ( IMHO ), and I'd love to hear all my old favorites again.

Re:GTA Music (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467109)

and I'd love to hear all my old favorites again.

well since you apparently already have the game, why don't you just pop the cd in and do so?

Re:GTA Music (1)

SomeGuyFromCA (197979) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467246)

I thought I was the only one who still remembered "The Ballad of Chapped-Lips Calhoun".

What I want to know is will this version still let me put in my own music CD and play music from that? ::digs out 'Music to Carjack By Volume VI', track listing on request::

In the News Today! (5, Funny)

nounderscores (246517) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467113)

An unknown suspect, or suspects, rammed the Rockstar Games server, waited for the admin to get out and then reversed over them several times.

police suspect slashdotting...

Look out for spam: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467116)

* NOTE: The information you provide on this form may be collected even if you are not eligible to download the game.

Uhh, so give them bogus info (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467236)

and use a throwaway address. The address I gave them *is* "throwaway@[domain]"-- I never check it unless I've signed up for something and have to be sent a password or link.

It should give spammers pause, because it's rather clear by the address that that's its sole purpose.

Finally, someone gets it... (5, Insightful)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467120)

What these guys have finally realized is that a game's value to its creator is first (obviously) as a revenue generator, but after newer versions have obsoleted the old product, it's more useful in terms of marketing as a giveaway. I for one, haven't ever purchased any of these games, but I'll give this a try, and who knows, they might just pick up a new customer. Enlightened self-interest works again!

Demo vs. full version (4, Interesting)

Furry Ice (136126) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467122)

Did anyone else find the full version somewhat lacking after playing the demo for weeks? It was just that after you had unlimited time, you actually needed to calm down and play nicely so that you'd stay alive.

With the demo, you had only a short amount of time, and you could _almost_ finish all four missions successfully in the time given, if you were really fast. Attempting to get all four in one insane speed-mayhem rush was the most fun I've had playing a video game, _ever_. The full version just didn't provide the same level of excitement.

Re:Demo vs. full version (1)

awx (169546) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467160)

Yeah, that sounds about right. To get it back, you have to set yourself little challenges - "i'm going to finish this mission in the next 2 mins or i'll quit out and start again" etc

Re:Demo vs. full version (3, Interesting)

lost_it (44553) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467202)

The real fun with the full version was to play networked. In my high school programming class, we'd spend the first 45 minutes programming, and the last 45 minutes gaming (the teacher had too much other stuff to do, and we all did our work well, so he kinda ignored it). We played Duke3d a little, but GTA was definitely the all-time favorite.

There was nothing better than running down one of your classmates while he was standing in the middle of the road trying to steal a car. Ah, good times...

What tax? (-1, Troll)

stevejsmith (614145) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467125)

The Microsoft tax? I paid no tax for my operating system. When I bought my computer I fairly compensated programmers for their hours of work. If you don't like their products, fine, but nobody is making you use them (don't even try it...they aren't). I assume when I drive my car I'm paying the Honda tax? Is this concept of paying people for their work a new thing to you people? Grow up and stop bitching and calling it the "Microsoft tax." While you're at it, stop replacing the S in MS with a dollar sign. Maybe you enjoy getting something for nothing, but I'm sure there are some people out there who enjoy eating and living in a real live house. 'Cause GPL doesn't pay the bills.

Re:What tax? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467145)

#define is_lame_troll(x) (x > 610000)

Re:What tax? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467174)

You hit it on the head brother. Microsoft sofware pays the bills wheras GPL is viral, mostly a waste of time, and not ready for a production enviroment. I just wish more of these /. nerds would get their heads out of their keysters.

Re:What tax? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467180)

You miss the point. They call it a "tax" because its hard to find a good selection of desktops/laptops that come with linux preinstalled. Sure, its easy to delete windows, but what's the sense in paying for it if you're not even going to boot it up once?

Re:What tax? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467253)

That's a lotta crap. I can buy NOW, and have been able to buy FOR A LONG TIME a PC or Laptop without any OS installed. The "Microsoft Tax" line is just more bullshit from the leeches in the "free" (as in "I'm a fucking loser with no job so I don't want to pay for anything"; or, "I am a goddamn thief") software punks. Open up your fucking eyes, hit up www.pricewatch.com and check it out. GODDAMN MORONS!

...One great cowboy... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467140)

Ah, this is great! I'll have to see if it differs from the original release.

But, if you don't have the original disk and you want a good CD to match the game, I suggest: Sugar Ray: Lemonade and Brownies. No other CD I've found fits the game so perfectly. The faster the car, the faster and harder driving the music.

Even the music when you are on foot is hilarious!

Thanks Slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467142)

Now I'm never going to be able to through to that server.

Free? Already been there! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467144)

Not warezing either!

GTA 1 & 2 have been available for free download from a few sites for a while now. Forgotten the exact site, but GTA2 is sitting on my HD as we speak.

More places to download from (5, Informative)

Necroman (61604) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467148)

http://www.fileshack.com/file.x?fid=2398 [fileshack.com]
I'm guessing there are many other places also to download it from. But if you are willing to wait in line for it at fileshack, its another option.

The email rockstar sent me about this yesterday (4, Informative)

rmohr02 (208447) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467150)

(Emphasis mine)
It's like Masterpiece Theater, Rockstar style. Curl up in your library, warm a nice snifter of brandy, and prepare your palette for a decadent trip back in time. That's right - we've gone ahead and decided to take the original PC version of Grand Theft Auto (1997) and give it away to the world, free of charge.


In keeping with the moral of the game itself, we encourage you all to visit www.rockstargames.com/classics post-haste, fill out the form and follow instructions to download this progenitor of the Rockstar lineage at a five finger discount.

The catch? Well, you have to sign up on our mailing list first. But if you're reading this, then that's hardly an issue, eh? And at a hefty 336 MB downloadable zip, of course faster connections and processors will prevail. Visit the Rockstar Classics page for much more detailed information.

Stay tuned for future volumes of Rockstar Classics as we continue to pillage the archives in the months to come...

www.rockstargames.com/classics

The rumblings were true. After all, you didn't really think we'd leave our PC loyalists empty handed, did you?

The street date is May 13, 2002 (May 16th for Europe) - and you should know what to expect. The universally acclaimed, lush, epic splendor of Vice City, enhanced for play on the latest and greatest Personal Computers. Further information, screenshots, and more to come in a short spell...

www.rockstargames.com/vicecity

Sorry, mates - this window of opportunity is now firmly sealed shut. Give us some time to pore through the record-breaking number of entries, and we'll be back to report the lucky winners in time for the next Rockstar Broadcast.

Fingers crossed.

www.rockstargames.com/vicecity/contest

"Microsoft Tax." (0, Insightful)

dasmegabyte (267018) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467157)

I hate this term. Goddamn do I hate this term. I paid $200 retail for my copy of windows 2000 and I have not had it crash on me or throttle my data with a stick. All I've done to it is install patches. In the same time, my friend's dumped about 500 hours into his linux box, with an additional 1-10 hours every time he wants to install something new, checking contingencies, updating each library one at a time, and all from a prompt.

Look, I'm a developer. I've written software for everything from a pocket pc to an as/400 adn that's included some work in linux. It's a nice unix. But it doesn't bridge the essential gap into the home market: it doesn't let me do what I want to do (like, say, play GTA) without forcing me to learn a whole bunch of things I shouldn't need to learn. A home user shouldn't have to learn how to "compile" everything. My toaster doesn't expect me to heat the coils myself!

So I paid $200 for remarkably less hassle. I wish all taxes were so painless.

I do think it sucks that you have to pay for windows even if you're not going to use it. But look at it this way: you probably spent less than I did at CompUSA. And everybody loves a bargain.

Re:"Microsoft Tax." (0, Troll)

Corbin Dallas (165835) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467178)

Your anecdotal evidence that "Windows is better for home users" is just as useless as the term "Microsoft-tax".

Re:"Microsoft Tax." (0, Flamebait)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467191)

Look, I'm a developer. I've written software for everything from a pocket pc to an as/400 adn that's included some work in linux. It's a nice unix. But it doesn't bridge the essential gap into the home market: it doesn't let me do what I want to do (like, say, play GTA) without forcing me to learn a whole bunch of things I shouldn't need to learn. A home user shouldn't have to learn how to "compile" everything. My toaster doesn't expect me to heat the coils myself!

Any "developer" who is scared to learn a few new things about a computer / OS is in the wrong line of work.

Re:"Microsoft Tax." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467205)

I probably shouldn't do this, but...

In the same time, my friend's dumped about 500 hours into his linux box, with an additional 1-10 hours every time he wants to install something new, checking contingencies, updating each library one at a time, and all from a prompt.

Your friend is:
(A) A moron.
(B) Someone who likes to do everything by hand in the most tedious way.
(C) Someone who picked a poor distro or one that that is how you're meant to do things (LFS?).
(D) A combination of the above.

I'm a Linux desktop user. I don't spend hours to install a single peice of software. I used Debian Unstable and update to the latest packages everyday (which is nice and automated, I don't have to think about it).

A nice unixy environment has tremendously increased my productivity (I'm a software developer) after a week or two was spent learning it properly (you've spent far more than a week or two getting used to Windows, don't whine ;)).

Please refrain from trolling.

Re:"Microsoft Tax." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467225)

A home user shouldn't have to learn how to "compile" everything.

A home user shouldn't have to dick around in the registry.

A home user shouldn't have to worry about security holes in their OS that a truck could drive through.

A home user shouldn't have to reinstall their OS and apps once or twice a year because the system gets crufty and slows down.

A home user shouldn't have to worry about their OS vendor tracking what they do with their machine, or what software is loaded on it.

A home user shouldn't have to agree to dodgy EULAs granting disturbing rights to their OS vendor in order to download and install "critical" updates and necessary service packs.

I'd rather have my $200 and be the one who's in control of my computer.

it's all over (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467161)

the wires are bursting into flames.

Like Sierra (1)

WickedClean (230550) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467162)

That is extremely cool of them!

Remember when Sierra Online did this a few years back. They put out one of the Krondor games, plus a few others. It was cool to download a full game but it sort of became obvious why it ended up being free.

One of the best networked games ever (5, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467164)

My friends and I played the hell out of this game when I lived in Austin. It's one of my favorite network game experiences, especially for slow (Pentium MMX and competitors) computers. It will run great on a low-end laptop. Unfortunately in its prior form it only supported IPX, I don't know if they've changed that particular aspect of its behavior (I haven't managed to download it yet.)

Actually, if someone reverse engineered the network protocol and made a server for it that allowed persistent multiplayer GTA I that would be bloody fantastic. It seems that everyone is making MMORPGs now, but they're all spending too much effort on the graphics, and not enough on gameplay. (Except for a couple of notable entrenched examples which have crappy graphics, but have become extremely popular. You know what they are.)

watchout for the backdoor! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467185)

When a for profit, proprietary company releases something for free, rest assured they will want something in return, ie.. information off of your computer they can sell to big brother.

Are you guys really that stupid?

Not to rain on everybody's parade... (5, Insightful)

diakka (2281) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467199)

This sounds like a nice thing... altho I think what Carmack did was much cooler.. GPL the engine and still charge for the data file. If Rockstar games did this, they might even find plenty of volunteers ready to port this thing to OpenGL.

Microsoft tax (1)

Bas_Wijnen (523957) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467203)

free game for anyone that's paid the Microsoft tax!

Not quite. The problem of the microsoft tax is that you pay it, even if you do not buy their software.

Been there - done that? (1)

S. Bolle (631631) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467208)

If I'm not mistaken, there was a site in the past (a year ago or so) which offered the game legally for free already. The only problem was you had to get the different pieces by clicking various banners and answering questions.

It sounds like a warez site, but it wasn't - they went bankrupt though and I can't really recall its name.

Anyway, it's always nice to get it without too much hassle.

yay. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5467214)

This is great news.

Now my pirated version is legal. :)

Source code available? (2, Funny)

caluml (551744) | more than 11 years ago | (#5467244)

I can't get to the site, so apologies if it's answered there.

Are they releasing the source too, as I think ID did with Doom?

That way we can kill processes by crashing into them. But seriously, if there is source released, we can get it ported to Linux.
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