Funny how when the whole Backwards Compatibility program took off Rockstar outright said that they have no interest in it. Now, here we are with an ever growing list of Rockstar titles that released on the Xbox 360 now playable on the newer Xbox One.
The official announcement came in a few hours after a part-rumor-part-leak showed that GTA 4: Episodes from Liberty City has been rated for the Xbox One. Naturally, the game was slapped with the same M rating as it got previously, but no one would expect this to change anyhow.
Since this discovery predated the official announcement, speculation ran wild. Of course, most people assumed correctly that this is merely a backwards compatible release instead of some kind of remaster. Some who hoped for a remaster argued that GTA 4 initially released on 2008, and younger games than that have been remastered already. That said, the lack of an ancillary subtitle pretty much ruled this out.
The games adhere to the typical format of backwards compatibility. If you already own the game digitally, all you need to is navigate to your game library on your Xbox One and download. If you own a physical copy, just slide the disc in and the download will commence. If you don't own the game in any form, you can grab it from the Xbox Store.
What's more, if you've got save games for either GTA 4 or Episodes from Liberty City uploaded to the cloud, they will sync up with the backwards compatible versions of the games. If you started the adventure of Niko Bellic on the 360 but didn't have the chance to finish, you can pick right up where you left off on your new Xbox One. Technology!
This might be great incentive for players who only jumped into the franchise with GTA 5 on a newer console. If you own an Xbox One and never played this previous installment, this is as good a time as any to do so. While GTA 4's dull color scheme and somewhat dated visuals were points of criticism, its story and overall gameplay experience were praised, and certain fans maintain that it's superior to GTA 5 to this day.
To celebrate this release, Rockstar Games is giving away a pretty sizeable gift package of physical merchandise that you'd be hard pressed to find anywhere else - and even if you would, it would cost a fortune.
The pack includes a GTA 4 branded dartboard with special darts sporting art from the game, a special 2-part screwable pool cue, a "GTA1V" Liberty City license plate (definitely not road legal, unfortunately), a TW@ mouse pad that definitely won't make you look silly in public, a miniature Statue of Happiness... well, statue, and a collection of 6 T-shirts.
While you can't quite make out the shirts from the promotional image, it seems like 2 are variants of the GTA 4 logo, one is the Lost MC emblem, one with the Chihuahua Hotdogs logo, one with the Angels of Death emblem and a shirt with the LCPD shield emblem.
While only one winner can take home this prize pack, 10 runner-ups will win the TW@ mousepad and the license plate. This is a straight giveaway, not a competition, so you don't actually need to do anything to win, merely enter on the Social Club's events page here.
GTA 4 might not have aged particularly gracefully, but it's a fantastic installment of this legendary franchise. The main game coupled with the expansions offers a massive amount of content, so old time fans better dust off those discs and revisit Liberty City.