Kinaya’s tale begins on a Sunday night at about 8pm. As a povvo newcomer to Liberty City, I quickly fell in with some slightly less recent immigrants. Fortunately for me, one of these people, Roman, was kind enough to offer me some work, and fortunately for his trachea, it isn’t work that has anything to do with his obsession with tits.
Roman runs a sliiightly dodgy, but not quite dishonest cab company, and any time I like, I can give him a shout and see if any work is available. I don’t know how long it’ll last, but all it requires is the ability to drive. I know how to make a car go and stop, and can turn both left and right, which appears to be more than can be said for some of the locals.
Roman is also renting me a flat. It’s a bit of a dump, and right underneath a railway track, but it’s within walking distance of work, there’s a diner right on the corner, and there’s even a beach a short walk away when I get some time off. I can make this work for about $300 a week, all inclusive.
There’s no real kitchen though, so I’ll have to live off the land. That’s fine, food’s pretty cheap here, and portions are American – you buy actual meals in restaurants here, not extortionate finger food bullshit like in some stupid little countries I could mention. But I have literally no money, and mama’s gonna be hungry before bed.
So, after cleaning up the worst of the mess in the flat, I figure I’d best get started on making some dough right away. Mmm, dough. Roman’s cabs are North from here. I head that way, calling him a couple of times on the way, but he’s not answering. When he finally does, it turns out he has nothing for me right now. Dang.
Oh well. I try another few times, and keep walking. Might as well get to know my neighbourhood a little before I try again. It’s still early too, I guess. Not even close to chucking out time.
Lots of traffic around here. Pretty weird for a Sunday night. I guess that’s city life though, huh? Lots of people around, too. I’m definitely in a low-end neighbourhood here, but it’s not exactly the ghetto. Liberty has a reputation for being dangerous as all hell, but things seem pretty chilled right now.
“Pretty chilled” is also a fair way to describe how my nights will be if I don’t get some work soon. Ulp. Walking away from the street under the railway, I soon find a little park. Not bad! Another place to relax if the beach isn’t doing it for me. Quite a nice place. I’ll have a wander here, maybe give Roman another call, see if there’s any work going.
Oh, seems there is. Kind of a shame, but I can always come back. Roman asks me to come grab a car from the depot. I need to eat, so I can’t afford to say no. Time to head back. On my way I pass a man with a saucepan on his head.
Sup, bro. Nice night out, huh? Like the hat, by the way. I used to have me a quality pan back home. Gonna save up for a set, maybe get hold of some decent chopping boards. Nothing like good head-and-cookware, I say. And what’s the deal with Teflon?
Back on railway street, I turn North, further away from home. Roman’s depot is a few minutes’ walk away. I’m not about to go poking about in the dark, but it looks like we’re right on the edge of a dockyard here. There’s a nice view for such a crappy area.
Pretty soon I reach work, where my chariot awaits.
Here we go. Right inside there is my meal ticket (like a dope, I somehow forgot to take a screenshot of the cab before I got in). She might not look like much, but if I take care of her, she ought to see me through just about anything that comes my way. I jump in, and pick up instructions from Roman to pick up a passenger from Firefly Island. Customer number one of many, here we come, and if any other cabbies get any funny ideas about nicking my fare, they’re bloody well for it. You can’t take this guy from me.
Exciting first person view! I have first person view mods installed for both in-car and on foot, however the latter makes for slightly distracting videos, as Kina’s hair flicks frequently in front of the camera. It’s fine for walking around as you get used to it, but in short videos it’s kind of annoying. However, I seriously dig the in-car look. It too has a few clipping issues, but is mostly pretty convincing – more so than any game I’ve played in fact. Oh, and speaking of mods, I will put a list up at some point. Modding GTA 4 is a bit of a pain in the arse due to the necessity of third party files and choosing how much you want to patch the game – more recent patches rendered many good mods inoperable, whereas older patches mean limited functionality for other mods. It is a wearisome update I don’t have the patience for right now.
But anyway. Unless I get really pissed off, most of the time I spend driving will be… well, it will be like driving around in New York, obeying the rules of the road. And my god, if Liberty City’s traffic and pedestrians are even slightly like the real thing, I think I understand why New Yorkers are such a bunch of walking explosions. Get a goddamn MOVE on, people. I’m on the clock here!
After a few minutes, I find Firefly Island. Turns out it’s even closer to my apartment than the depot is. Confusingly, it is neither an island or a firefly. Maybe it’s a clever ploy by the tourism board. Whatever. My fare gets in, while a drunk pedestrian decides to walk directly into my stationary car and lie on the bonnet, staring accusingly at me the whole time that my fare gets in.
Not today, son. I’m not some dumb schmuck fresh off the boa… well okay, I am, but I’m still not going to fall for your weird insurance scam or whatever you’re pulling. I have a job to do, and I am outta here.
Cerveza Heights, huh? Eso suena como mí típo de barrio, sabes?*
You the boss, man. Looks like I got here just in time, too, it’s absolutely chucking it down out there. Beer Towers, here we come!
*Yeah, I know this doesn’t really translate well. Indulge me. I’m new here.