Almost everyone knew that the release of Grand Theft Auto V on next-gen consoles was a given as soon as the game was announced to be releasing so close to the release of the PS4 and Xbox One. However, most people did not expect it to take this long. The time between the original release and the next-gen re-release is justified however, as Rockstar Games have put an incredible amount of work into upgrading the game to take advantage of the power of the PS4 and Xbox One.

GTAV on PS4 & Xbox One is the same underlying game as the original release (albeit with many new features added), so, much of our original review for PS3 and Xbox 360 still applies to this release. As a result, we will only discuss the changes which have been made to the game on the Playstation 4 and Xbox One and the benefit they offer to the experience.

The biggest change is the addition of a first-person mode to the game. By simply pressing the touchpad on the Dualshock 4 (for the PS4 version), you can instantly switch between first and third person. If you wish to re-experience Los Santos, and the story of Michael, Franklin and Trevor, then first person mode is the best way to do so, delivering a far different experience to that of third-person mode. At first, it may feel very strange to play GTA in first-person, however, after getting used to it, it provides a fresh new perspective on the story which is certainly worth exploring. The true violence behind your actions is often hidden when playing in third-person mode, however, first-person mode will reveal the gory details.

Another thing you will immediately notice is the visual upgrade the game has had on the PS4 and Xbox One. The game is now rendered in a beautiful 1080p resolution, and all of the game’s textures have been replaced with one built for this resolution. As a result, everything looks more clear, vivid and realistic. It is clear that the development team have made some tweaks to the lighting engine, draw distance and backgrounds. As a result of the increased draw distance, everything looks less flat in the game. Also, the number of people and vehicles roaming the streets of Los Santos has increased. Unfortunately, the game suffers occasional frame rate stutters, where it drops below 30FPS, however, it is not a huge issue.

Other improvements to the visual presentation of the game include more realistic weather effects, such as leaves and grass blowing in the wind. Animals looks more realistic and a few new varieties of them have been added. Items in the world now look more reflective also, particularly water. While the changes and subtle and may not be consciously noticed, it all helps to make the world feel more realistic than ever.

The final major improvement to the game is the addition of 150 new songs to the radio in GTAV. Also, new lines of dialogue have been recorded by the radio presenters to better integrate these new songs and to make the content feel fresh, for those who spent a lot of time playing the PS3/360 version of the game. This addition is fantastic and extremely welcome, as it something which Rockstar did not necessarily have to add, but did so for the fans. As always, the new songs available cater to everyone’s tastes and are fantastic choices, but, we will leave you to discover them as you speed through Los Santos.

Overall, if you enjoyed the original release of GTAV, a return to Los Santos is definitely worthwhile. While it may be the same game fundamentally, the new bells and whistles added to the game make it worthwhile to return to the game. Enough new features have been added to make the experience feel different. With a fantastic story like that of Grand Theft Auto 5, combined with the new visual upgrades and added features, the game holds enough value to warrant a replay of the masterpiece.