2002 was a huge year for popular culture. It saw the release of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (it was obviously a huge year for sequels) to say the least.
It also saw two of the biggest pop groups of the time collide when Atomic Kitten member Kerry Katona got married to Westlife member Brian McFadden – only for them to split two years later, much like their respective groups.
But perhaps the most memorable thing to come from 2002 was the release of GTA: Vice City, a game which received critical acclaim and quickly became the most revered video game of the 21st century.
Take a trip down memory lane by watching the trailer below:
Described by many as ‘the best game of the 21st century,’ GTA: Vice City – released 17 years ago to the day – is based on real-life events in Miami such as biker gangs, the 1980’s crack epidemic, and the Mafioso drug lords of the city.
It allowed the player to immerse themselves in a world so separate from their own – with guns, violence, and high-speed car chases taking centre stage 24/7 – and yet it seemed so real to us because we were right there, in the centre of the action.
Even non-gamers such as myself couldn’t help but get attached to the game, as we navigated our way through Vice City – consisting of two main islands – either by car or on foot. The game somehow just made it easy to get lost in a world so far removed from your own.
And don’t even get me started on the music, which acts as the game’s soundtrack and can be listened to in most vehicles in GTA: Vice City via the radio.
With stations such as Wave 103 (New Wave, Synthpop, and Post-Punk), Flash FM (Pop), and Fever 105 (Disco, Soul, R&B, and Funk), players were never short on choice, and there was always the potential for a boogie before going to pull off a bank heist.
For those of you worried that no game will ever match up to it though, don’t fret, because Grand Theft Auto VI is reportedly going to be set in two locations – including Vice City.
So brace yourselves for that huge wave of nostalgia to inevitably hit you when the game’s released (whenever that may be).
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).