Driver beat the Grand Theft Auto series to the punch in the 3D open world gaming race.
NYPD Detective John Tanner’s journey begins in the rough streets of Miami, sometime during the 1970’s as he is sent deep undercover to infiltrate the mob under the guise of being a freelance getaway driver for hire. Why the NYPD has jurisdiction in Miami, we will never know.
It is mentioned by your police chief that assigns you to the case that you are an, “ex-racer” and the “best damn driver this force has got.” Now if only you could pass the driving tutorial.
Okay – that’s way more difficult then it looks and arguably the most difficult mission of the game.
Borrowing heavily from chase films from the 70’s, the soundtrack, the cars, and the exceptionally lame dialogue are all consistent with the time period. And to be honest, saying the dialogue is exceptionally lame is a gross understatement. The plot and dialogue read like a Tarantino script if a toddler spilled juice all over it. Or if a thirteen year old who wasn’t allowed to swear thought saying the word, “shit” when his mom wasn’t around made him the baddest person on the planet.
All jokes aside, it’s hard to imagine now but this game was a pioneer of sorts. At the time there had been three (including expansion packs) Grand Theft Auto releases already on the market but all were two dimensional, overhead camera views. There had yet to be an open world, 3D environment and GT Interactive would beat Rockstar to the punch. Granted in Driver, you can’t exit your vehicle or commit mass homicide but you could still freely take a ride in any one of the four cities the plot takes place in. This was a big fucking deal.
Ignoring the bad voice acting and ridiculous zero-to-ten-thousand plot line (**SPOILER** this mob tries to murder the president for absolutely no apparent reason) this game is simple and brilliant. With fun, easy controls and straightforward missions, it quickly becomes very addicting. The cars respond well even though it will take a few minutes for you to adjust to using the Directional Pad to steer. The AI is out of its mind but it doesn’t really matter because the “laws” of the Driver universe are ludicrous in the first place.
Punishmental: Examining the Laws of the Driver Universe.
Getting a law degree in this video game world would be pointless because basically, there is only one crime and one type of punishment. All infractions are felonies. There are no tickets. No second chances. All crime is a felony and all felonies are punishable by death. Nobody arrests anybody. Cops are just vehicular manslaughter machines.
Ran a red light?
Expect to be T-Boned at 160 miles per hour by a cop car at the next intersection.
Accidentally rear ended the car in front of you?
Goodbye. You’re about to be killed on site by a cop car torpedoing towards you at 200 miles per hour.
Texting while driving??
It’s total madness. But it’s fun.