After messing around with Grand Theft Auto IV for several hours, I’m pretty surprised. It’s not that there are inadequate levels of objectionable content, or that the graphics aren’t realistic, or that there aren’t enough different types of vehicles to steal. The biggest shocker is that the team at Rockstar can craft a stunning recreation of New York City and omit the stadium of the New York Yankees (appropriately dubbed Yankee Stadium).
Now, I’m certainly no fan of the Yankees, and many people may not care about baseball, but it’s a landmark of the city that should be represented (even though this is the stadium’s last season). It took some exploration, as well as a visit to Rockstar’s website, but I discovered that there is a baseball team in Liberty City. They’re called the Liberty City Swingers, and they play at Meadow’s Park in the borough of Dukes (the game’s equivalent to Queens – although Yankee Stadium is in the Bronx). The field is tiny and crappy; it has flowers and weeds in the outfield and, for some inexplicable reason, the dirt is raised into mounds at every base and at home plate. Some programmer must have thought that all baseball fields had this design.
It’s disappointing that there’s no 50,000+ seat stadium for me to roam around in, even if the game makers didn’t want to mess with having games actually take place there. I’ll have to be sufficiently entertained by other means, like seeing how far my lifeless body can be flung when I drive my motorcycle headfirst into oncoming traffic on the freeway. Now there’s a kick you can’t get in real life.