Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories

Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories featured image

The GTA franchise returns to its stomping grounds Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories. What makes this game unique is that not only is its setting, Liberty City, is the same as the previous Grand Theft Auto III, but also that the overall layout of the city remains virtually unchanged, with a few exceptions to reflect that the game takes place around 3 years prior to GTA III.

GTA: Liberty City Stories was developed in a collaboration between Rockstar Leeds and Rockstar North. It was published by Rockstar Games and is the ninth installment in the Grand Theft Auto series, initially released as a PlayStation Portable exclusive in October 2005.

The game received a PS2 port in 2006 and more ports for iOS, Android and Fire OS devices were also released by December 2015.

Plot and location

GTA: Liberty City Stories is a prequel to 2001's Grand Theft Auto III and uses the same setting. Liberty City is a fictional version of New York City.

Set in the year 1998, the single-player storyline follows gangster Toni Cipriani (a character first introduced in Grand Theft Auto III) and his quest to climb the ranks of the criminal enterprise of the Leone family while also navigating the power struggle between various mafia organizations.

At the start of the game, Toni Cipriani's boss Salvatore Leone of the Leone Family introduces Toni to the family's capo Vincenzo Cilli. Cilli persuades Toni do some work for him, which then propels the rest of the events of the game.


On the PlayStation Portable, character movement is controlled with analog sticks. The D-Pad is used for cycling through available weapons.


The Select button changes the camera mode. To target enemies, the player can hold his R button and use the Left and Right of the directional pad to switch between targets. Note that in the game`s menu, the player can choose to reverse the functions of the analog stick and D-Pad.

Drive-by shooting is possible with the L button and R button inside the car. While in the course of a mission, all enemies specific to the job are indicated on the radar by red dots.

The Sony PS2 version controls a bit differently, incorporating elements and features from other GTA games. PlayStation 2 version of Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories combines various game mechanics from Grand Theft Auto III, the PS2 version of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Walking movement and shooting controls are more like those found in GTA III or GTA Vice City. However, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories uses camera control and third-person free aiming that is similar to how they are handled in GTA: San Andreas.

Visuals and other features

GTA:L iberty City Stories includes elements found in the sequel to Grand Theft Auto III, including more indoor environments, clothes, and bikes.

GTA Liberty City Stories has some significant features changed (or even removed) that were present in GTA: San Andreas. For instance, GTA: San Andreas encouraged players to feed and train Carl Johnson (the protagonist) on a regular basis to prevent him from losing health and skills. This simulation-type feature is not present in GTA: Liberty City Stories.

Furthermore, airplanes are shown in GTA Liberty City Story and even take part in some mission. But unlike GTA San Andreas, players do not have the opportunity nor the controls implemented to pilot flying vehicles in this game.

Gang wars can occur in missions and is one of the main elements in Liberty City Stories, but the player cannot take control of territories in this game. This is a feature that stood out in GTA San Andreas. Other gameplay features changed in Liberty City Stories include swimming being removed and parkour is simplified like in the GTA III and GTA Vice City games.

The Sony PSP version of the game also includes multiplayer over ad-hoc wireless networks, allowing up to six players to participate in several different game modes. The multiplayer modes for wireless include Liberty City Survivor, Protection Racket, Get Stretch, The Hit List, Street Rage, The Wedding List, and Tanks for the Memories.

Players in multiplayer can select pedestrian and character models as their player avatars that are usually not available for the single player mode. However, Rockstar removed these modes from the PS2 port of GTA Liberty City Stories.

A special feature for GTA: Liberty City Stories (though only on the Sony PSP and mobile versions of the game) is the option to listen to custom soundtracks. Previously, only Grand Theft Auto games on Xbox and PC could implement custom soundtracks.

Release Date

Oct 24, 2005


Play Time

14 hours

Games in Series



Mature 17+: Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language, Strong Sexual Content, Use of Drugs

Interesting Facts

  • It was the first GTA game released for the PlayStation Portable.
  • Liberty City Stories takes place in early 1998 within the fictional Liberty City, and forms part of the “3D Universe” canon of the Grand Theft Auto series.
  • Liberty City’s layout is largely similar to Grand Theft Auto III.
  • The game features several homages to various media about the Italian Mafia.
  • This is the last game in the series to not include the ability of the character to swim.
  • GTA Liberty City Stories is historically the third best-selling game for the Sony PSP.
  • There are no police roadblocks in this GTA game, which others set in the 3D Universe series had.
  • The player can sprint while wielding a two-handed weapon, a first for the GTA franchise.
  • Italian Mafia references from popular media in GTA Liberty City Stories include the Goodfella Outfit (from the Goodfellas film) and the Wiseguy Outfit (which bears a striking resemblance to Tony Soprano’s usually attire from The Sopranos).
  • Toni unlocks the Dragon Suit when the player completes the Crazy 69 mission. This is a reference to the movie Kill Bill, where the main character (Uma Thurman’s “The Bride”) wears the exact same costume which was a nod to Bruce Lee’s track suit in Game of Death. Bruce Lee is often referred to as “The Dragon”.

Mod Support


Cheats support


LGBTQ Inclusive




Third/First Person

Third person

Game Engine


Protagonist sex


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