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GTA V has production-values up the ass, so I can say my problems with with this game are deliberate creative choices instead of any technical shortcomings.
I played the campaign as a strict action game which I will give it a 3/5 but as a sandbox crime sim it is painfully unfulfilling.
To keep my sanity I never engaged with the asinine mission scoring. It makes the full-sync from Assassin's Creed look reasonable.
There is no major arc or any good antagonists, just a jumble of boring unrelated subplots. Watching two middle-aged men bicker for 20 hours does not make a compelling story. The ending is the dumbest nonsense possible because it's when our trio of career-criminals realises they can kill their enemies at any time without consequence. The most frustrating part is when a villain doesn't pay you for your hard work, and you don't get to kill him for another 30 missions.
The heist-system is only the germ of a good idea. It's too limited, as you can't change your plan beforehand, and there's too few heists with any real input by the player.
I found the writing teeth-grating as it attempts satire, but satire does not work in the hands of the wealthy. It never rises above mean-spirited dreck that's noticably dated to 2013.
On beating the campaign you get tens of millions of dollars but nothing to spends it on. There are sidequests but they all involve meeting the rancid one-note people of Los Santos. I called it quits because there was really nothing more worth my time. Games this long need real character-progession, a grander more cohesive-story, a world-map that isn't 70% mountain, and a tone that doesn't resent the people playing it.
The meanspirited satire of GTAV gets under my skin too, but my personal interpretation that might improve it slightly is that when Obvious Republican Stereotype comes on the radio and outright say he hates gays, minorities and the disabled, it\'s not literal - we hear what the our rightfully cynical protagonists hear, as if they can see through the bullshit. It\'s still grating, juvenile and hamfisted either way.
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