The iconic top down sandbox action that was introduced in the original Grand Theft Auto still has a place in many gamer’s hearts, with players wanting to relive the classic car jacking and money stealing which GTA delivered so perfectly. The PlayStation Portable title Chinatown Wars offered just that, satisfying the craving for the classic GTA, while expanding and improving upon the genre. Now PlayStation Minis title, Car Jack Streets, aims to do exactly that – bring back the beloved style of the original GTA action and add something new. However, is this just a complete and utter clone of Chinatown Wars?
In many aspects, yes it is. But it still does have its own few unique attributes. Action, driving, and crime game is what players will experience as you play as Randal Meyers, a small-town crook that has a difficult mission in paying back one million dollars in debt to the Mob. You’ll be fighting for your life to get the money to pay the debt back within Car Jack Streets. You acquire money by robbing banks, stealing cars, do jobs for the crime lords and even the occasional Pizza delivery job. Yes, it all sounds like a GTA: Chinatown Wars wannabe indeed.
As already mentioned, Car Jack Streets does have its own few unique attributes. It features a real-time element where the time in the game is the same in the real world. If you need to get to the bank in five minutes to rob it, then it’s real-life five minutes. If you have a week to pay back $50,000 of your gambling debt (which does occur), then that’s one real week.
Controls can become quite annoying with some controls being unresponsive at times. Another gripe is that the driving can also become frustrating at times to drive around.
The replayability is something which adds to the value of Car Jack Streets. As with most Grand Theft Auto games, you’ll be occupied killing civilians, robbing shops, jacking cars and going on a rampage. This can lead to an entertaining and amusing few hours if you’re on a train or traveling somewhere.
Graphics are pretty decent with each object within the ambitious title having their own stylized animation feeling. Considering Car Jack Streets is a part of Sony’s PlayStation Minis service, the visuals do stand out on occasions, and it’s impressive to say the least especially for a Minis title.
Let’s face it, Car Jack Streets just wants to be a miniature version of GTA: Chinatown Wars. The game takes concepts from previous GTA games in almost every way – its top-down view, jacking cars and causing crime – and puts it all into one affordable game. Developer TagGames have done a decent job, though, in creating a fairly fun sandbox title. However, the amount you’re paying for this game is what you’re going to get in return, and sadly it’s not much.
PlayStation LifeStyle’s Final Score
Fairly original concept of a real-time element
Essentially copying Chinatown Wars too much
Controls can become annoying on several occasions