Comparison shots illustrate Rockstar’s dedication to accuracy in GTA IV

I know what you’re thinking — “Goldarnit, another blasted GTA IV comparison post?!” (And if you are thinking that, well, the 1920s called; they want their mild oaths back.) But I’m happy to report that this post has nothing to do with differences in how GTA IV looks or runs on the PS3 and 360. Instead, it’s about Flickr user Matthew Johnston, who has done a bang-up job (there we go again with the anachronisms) on a set of comparison shots featuring photos of real locations in New York City alongside images from GTA IV.

The Flickr album, entitled “Sightseeing in Liberty City”, features 29 images. There’s also a simple cover with the following text: “Liberty City vs New York City: A photoset showing the similarities between Grand Theft Auto 4 and real life.” If you can’t tell, the image above features New York’s Manhattan Bridge on the left, and its digital doppelgänger, the Algonquin Bridge, on the right.

Johnston explains that he took the original photos of New York about two years ago, and simply took pictures of his TV while playing GTA IV to match the photos. And the side-by-side shots show just how impressive Rockstar’s reincarnation of the Big Apple in GTA IV really is. In particular, check out the picture of the Hearst Tower and the striking wide-angle shot of the Statue of Liberty/Happiness with Lower Manhattan/Algonquin in the background (it even includes fog in both instances!).

You might do a double take or two — that’s how accurate some of them are. The resemblance between Liberty City and New York is uncanny in many of these images, and it really illustrates the tremendous effort that Rockstar put into researching this game. As a New Yorker, I think this is especially cool — in fact, I might even go as far as to say that it’s the bee’s knees. Wouldn’t you?

[Via Flickr – Craig Clark, you’re the cat’s meow!]

Samit Sarkar