Civil Liberties

How Easy Money Makes Grand Theft Auto V Boring


Try-hard gamer (and Daily Beast National Security writer) Eli Lake dishes on how online play in Grand Theft Auto V (GATV) became boring once he learned cheats that allowed him to dominate the mean streets of Los Santos:

In real life, the sudden accumulation of wealth may lead one to buy nice clothes, take a vacation, give to a charity or make sound investments. But in the world of grand theft auto, I spent my glitched cash on more lethal goods and services. I purchased a tank. I purchased an attack helicopter. I purchased a sniper rifle. Those were the goods. As for the services, I now had money to send mercenaries and airstrikes against players I did not like. Yes, the game has something called "Merryweather Security" because "everybody needs a private army."

It was payback time. I went after as many of my tormentors as I could find. I no longer worried about dying either. With millions in my in game account, why did it matter? It was exhilarating going from hunted to hunter. Nor did I feel any guilt about cheating. This is, after all, a game where you pretend to be a criminal.

But the joke it turns out was on me. Once the challenge was removed, the game stopped being fun. After a while it gets boring coming up with new ways to kill other players.

Read the whole thing.

You want something that never gets boring? Read Lake's terrifying 2010 piece for Reason, "The 9/14 Presidency: Barack Obama is operating with the war powers granted George W. Bush three days after the 9/11 attacks."

Back in September, when GATV first came out, I wrote about how videogames are the great art form of the 21st century for Read that here.