[Top 10] Best Rockstar Games of All Time

Best Rockstar Games
Just another Tuesday for Franklin Clinton

10. Grand Theft Auto III (PS2, PC, Xbox, PS3, PS4, PS5)

Grand Theft Auto III: 10 Year Anniversary Edition - Official Launch Trailer

Does it hold up to modern players? Probably not. But if you were there when this gem came out, you know it to be a classic. You are thrusted into the underbelly of Liberty City, betrayed by your girlfriend and left to die, you must rise through the ranks of the criminal underworld to exact your revenge.

This was one hell of a turning point for the Grand Theft Auto franchise. Gone were the birds eye view gameplay from GTA 1 and 2, for an upscaled, 3D experience that set the precedent, for not only GTA games, but open world games that we know and love today. Great action, endless freedom and a stellar voice cast, this one is for the history books.

9. Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne (PC, PS2, Xbox, Xbox 360, PS3)

Max Payne 2 - Trailer #2

By 2003, Rockstar had a knack for bringing old, Hollywood style storytelling onto the gaming platform, and Max Payne 2 was among the first to demonstrate this masterfully. The game continues the story of the titular detective, Max Payne, as he finds himself wrangled up in a case of death, betrayal and forbidden love.

For one of Rockstar’s first attempts at narrative depth, Max Payne 2 was a highly ambitious and well received emotional ride. If you like film noir then you will really appreciate the voice over style and moody backdrop that defines this game. Even today, fans await a follow-up or remaster of some kind. Make it happen Rockstar! 

8. L.A. Noire (PS3, Xbox 360, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC)

L.A. Noire 4K Trailer

Speaking of film noir, Rockstar really upped the ante with this installment, not with just another take of one of their favorite genres, but with grand, ambitious face capture innovations. You play as Detective Cole Phelps, as he rises through the ranks of 1940’s L.A. police department and unravels a series of dastardly crimes.

What stands out is Rockstar’s attempt of creating believable facial tics that could signal to the player if a suspect was lying or not. Players were forced to pay attention and consider all clues and your own intuition to solve crimes. It’s too bad things behind the scenes were so chaotic otherwise we may have seen a polished follow up. Fingers crossed.

7. Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare (PS3, Xbox 360)

Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare Launch Trailer

Zombies in the wild west?! What’s not to love? Obviously not canon with Rockstar's Red Dead Redemption, we join John Marston once again on his journey across the west to find out what has brought on this spooky apocalypse.

Undead Nightmare took all of the gameplay we loved from RDR and injected a fun and zany world of zombies for us to get lost in. You can ride the Four Horses of the Apocalypse, meet sasquatches, reunite with old friends from the first game and rip through the undead on a fiery steed. If you need a break from the emotional weight brought on by the RDR franchise, this game can certainly provide you that mindless entertainment. 

6. Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (PS2, PC, Xbox, PS3, Nintendo Switch, Xbox Series, PS4, PS5)

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City - Anniversary Trailer

It’s an understatement to say that GTA fans miss the neon lights and 80’s soundtrack of the one and only Vice City. You play as Tommy Vercetti, out of prison after a long stretch and thrusted into the backstabbing, criminal empires of the beach city.

Vice City took everything great about GTA III and juiced it up with glitz and glamour. Joining the cast was the likes of Ray Liotta, Danny Trejo, Burt Reynolds, and Luis Guzman just to name a few. It was 2002 and the Grand Theft Auto series was going places, and this game turned the tide for Rockstar Games forever.

5. Grand Theft Auto IV & The Episodes From Liberty City (Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PC)

Grand Theft Auto IV: Complete Edition – Available on the Rockstar Games Launcher

GTA: Episodes from Liberty City Official Trailer #2

No, this is not a tie, GTA IV is a lot bigger than you thought. In the Complete Edition you play as immigrant Niko Bellic, bike-head Johnny Klebitz, and nightclub bodyguard Luis Lopez as they fight for survival in Liberty City’s criminal underworld.

Not only did GTA IV revolutionize open world games with dense, industrial detail, making their worlds feel “livable”, but they also pioneered the trend of epic DLC content with The Lost and Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony. The story also turned the tide with more serious themes of betrayal and the banality of the “American Dream”. It would be a crime if these games were ever forgotten.

4. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PS2, Xbox, PC, PS3, Xbox 360, PS4)

GTA San Andreas "Welcome to Los Santos" Trailer (PS2)

It’s no coincidence that GTA: San Andreas is one of the best selling games of all time. You play as Carl “CJ” Johnson through his journey from working the ghettos to operating high-end casinos in Las Venturas in the most sprawling GTA world yet.

San Andreas pushed the PS2 to its absolute brink of its software capabilities and so much of its zany gameplay holds up today. In addition to the oscar-worthy script played masterfully by Hollywood elites such as Samual L. Jackson and James Woods, there has never been so many features and so many locations packed into a GTA game to date. Fans are still waiting when they will surpass what Rockstar has accomplished here.

3. Red Dead Redemption (Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One)

Red Dead Redemption Official Launch Trailer

Leave it to Rockstar to welcome one of cinema's classic genres to the gaming platform with inimitable success. This is the story of John Marston, a former outlaw forced back into his old ways when his family is taken from him in a time when the ways of the old west are dying.

Red Dead Redemption took the GTA formula and brought it to the old west with masterful precision. They even went so far to get the horse physics to the tee. Players get the full scope of old western tropes like shootouts, saloon brawls, ghost towns and Mexican stand-offs as well as a compelling story with one hell of a ballsy and emotional ending. Bravo.

2. Grand Theft Auto V / Grand Theft Auto Online (Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4, Xbox Series, PS5, PC)

Grand Theft Auto V: The Official Trailer

Grand Theft Auto V and GTA Online Out Now on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S

Man, GTA just doesn’t know when to quit do they? Amassing fans from 3 generations of consoles GTA V stands the test of time both on and offline. If you’re not playing as Michael, Franklin or Trevor fighting for their right to the American Dream, then you play as well, you, in the endless sprawl of Los Santos building your criminal empire with friends (and enemies).

The world is beautiful, the car physics have never been better, the dialogue is as witty as ever and there’s an endless array of iconic music and activities to partake in. Unlike previous installments, GTA can receive constant updates of vehicles, activities and songs for your degenerate delight. That’s sure to keep us busy until GTA 6 comes along.

1. Red Dead Redemption II (Xbox One, PS4, PC)

Red Dead Redemption 2: Official Trailer #3

Whoa, they did it?! Rockstar made an IP that surpasses even GTA?! Taking everything that worked in GTA IV, RDR and GTA V, this may well be Rockstar’s magnum opus. You play as Arthur Morgan, 12 years before the events of RDR as you help your gang leader, Dutch, to escape the law in a time when modernity is beginning to devour the ways of the old west.

One look at this gorgeous, sprawling landscape and you’re instantly hit with a meditative trance. The acting has never been better, the graphics are at its peak, the world is fun to explore and the characters are people you actually care about. What separates RDR from GTA is its ability to make you cry and man, does that last mission do just that. Rockstar has reached an apotheosis with their latest game and makes us that much more excited to see what they do next.

The ultimate hybrid of archetypal wonder, I am a scholarly wizard of words and a martial fighter of unity, a captain of both pen and sword.
Gamer Since: 1993
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Spider-Man Miles Morales
Top 3 Favorite Games:Grand Theft Auto V, Mass Effect 2, Batman: Arkham Knight

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