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'Grand Theft Auto V' Reviews: Game Launches Amid Widespread Praise

09/17/2013 07:13 pm ET | Updated Sep 18, 2013

"Grand Theft Auto V" hit shelves Tuesday, prompting gamers around the world to announce their escape from reality for the next few weeks.

Fans of the popular video game series have been anticipating the launch of "GTA V" for years. According to CNET, the game's release could be the biggest of 2013, with some analysts estimating that it will bring in about $1 billion for the franchise in its first month in stores.

Judging by the buzz, both online and off, that the game's launch has generated, it seems plausible that "GTA V" may end up being one of the top games of the year. But is the latest iteration of "Grand Theft Auto" living up to all the hype so far?

According to reviewers, the answer is a resounding yes.

Gaming enthusiasts across the board lauded "GTA V" for its "extraordinarily beautiful" visuals, huge open world "packed with things to see and do," excellent vehicle handling and vast array of gripping and challenging missions. Reviewers also praised the game for its sophisticated and "engaging" narrative, innovative three-protagonist structure and meticulous attention to detail.

Giving it 5 out of 5 stars, The Guardian's Keith Stuart called "GTA V" a "dazzling but monstrous parody of modern life." Joystiq's Xav de Matos, giving it a 4.5 out of 5, promised that "interacting with Grand Theft Auto's world is better than it's ever been."

Even reviewers who had negative things to say about the game (Polygon's Chris Plante criticizes its "empty cynicism" and "unnecessarily excessive cruelty," while Gamespot's Carolyn Petit calls it out for being "profoundly misogynistic") still gave "GTA V" fabulous scores. Plante, who applauds the game's "brilliantly planned heists," gave "GTA V" a 9.5 over 10; Petit, calling the game "outrageous" as well as "exhilarating," gave it a 9.

At the time of publication, "Grand Theft Auto V" for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 had a score of 97 and 98 over 100 respectively on Metacritic.com.

Have you laid your hands on the new "GTA V"? Tell us what you think of the game in the comments below.

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