Universal acclaim - based on 58 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 58
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 58
  3. Negative: 0 out of 58
  1. In regards to the gameplay, I'd have to give the overall advantage to the Xbox version, again, mostly due to the better framerate. Being able to smoothly spin around the camera, in the vehicles and on foot, makes a big difference in how the game plays.
  2. What does make it great is that it actually delivers on nearly everything it promises while still being fun to just pick up and play.
  3. 100
    How can Rockstar follow this? San Andreas is a masterpiece; the outstanding gameplay from the first two games has been extended, tweaked and applied to a fresh, original and fascinating setting. There's more than enough meat to keep you going for months, and the sheer variety of gameplay is bewildering.
  4. 100
    This is arguably the biggest game ever made, and if you were to complete it 100%, it would take you several hundred hours, I'd estimate 400 to 500 at least.
  5. Divisive though its hip-hop ideology may be, and under-furnished some areas may feel, it still edges close enough often enough to be worthy of one of our highest marks.
  6. What San Andreas does is take every element from the previous two games and amplifies it. Everything good about the series has become even better, while the bad aspects have become mind-numbingly dire.
  7. It's good, and will hold your interest, but with some slightly frustrating controls that aren't customisable, driving Duke owners to desperation, or a new controller S (effectively making it into a £55 game) it's only really slightly improved over the PS2 version.
  8. 100
    How do you improve on perfection? We'll tell you how: Take the same genius game that you played last fall on the PS2 and give everything a fresh coat of pixel paint... Then, remove the long load times, allow us to save 30-second replays to the hard drive for those you-won't-believe-this-booshiz moments and create personalized radio stations by ripping your CD collection to the hard drive.
  9. Music and sound are probably the best of any of the GTA series. As much as the 80's tunes in "Vice City" were awesome, the sheer number of tunes and the variety of them are incredible in San Andreas.
  10. The sheer scope of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is mind blowing.
  11. The game is incredibly fun. It will surely take up hundreds of hours to even the most casual of gamers.
  12. Not only is it bigger and better, but it looks and feels so good on the Xbox so if you haven't already bought this game this is the definitive version to own.
  13. I cannot think of a game series that does a better job in the sound department. The voice talent is tremendous.
  14. Gamers will see that the load times are fast, the cut-scenes are well done, and the story is filled with twists that you won't see coming.
  15. It's still quite possibly the best game ever made, and Rockstar's done pretty much all they could to make San Andreas the best it could be on the Xbox.
  16. 95
    No competitor comes close in content, story, or style to Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
  17. Individually, the components of GTA San Andreas are very strong. When combined, though, the total package makes for one of the best gameplay experiences that has been seen in the gaming world in years.
  18. One of the most incredibly engrossing adventures on any system.
  19. With its almost unbelievable length, incredible depth, fantastic audio, and just about everything else a good game needs, this game is incontestably worth every penny it costs.
  20. It's not perfect – there's still the odd gripe here and there, and wheeling the same game engine out for the next instalment would be unforgivable – but SA is easily the most polished instalment of the series to date.
  21. With its strong story, well-written dialogue, terrific voice cast, impressive graphics, and extremely entertaining and varied gameplay, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is a stupendous thrill ride that shouldn't be missed.
  22. Another major failing of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas on the Xbox is the unnatural controller layout, and it's a fault that can't be too heavily attributed to the developers.
  23. But the move to Xbox feels like more of a formality-you don't really notice the slightly nicer environments, and if ever a game didn't need custom soundtracks, this is the one.
  24. 92
    Not everything is so perfect with San Andreas though. First and foremost, the graphics aren't really Xbox quality.
  25. This is the definitive chapter in arguably one of the most popular game series of all time. If you haven't ever played a Grand Theft Auto game… well, first of all, shame on you, but more importantly, this is the one to get you hooked.
  26. While I still prefer "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" to this title, I will say that this is in no way a lesser offering.
  27. To award a 10 on this well-crafted but by no means revolutionary game would be a disservice to titles that are out there really trying to rewrite our preconceived notions of videogames, but to go for a 9 also seems like lowballing a title that should be a must-own for so many.
  28. It's way more savvy than most movies about gang violence.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 95 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. Jul 11, 2013
    Holy I love this game I cant wait for the new one coming out and taking place in san andreas Omg.......This game is a masterpiece the cops are so fun to screw with as well. This is one of those hard games to come by these days when ever you can command gang members or your crew like socom it makes a great game. Full Review »
  2. Jun 12, 2014
    This game really brings back some good memories. What I liked the most about this game was that there was so much you were able to do. Like jetpacking around the city or, just going on a complete rampage against the cops. The graphics part of the game were basically amazing because it looked so real at the time and it looked like you were literally in an entire new world (which you kind of were in). It was by far one of the best in the GTA series, and if not the best. The newer ones like GTA5 are still really fun and amazing, and have a lot better graphics (At the time). But I still feel like San Andreas brought back better memories. This game was something very, very special. Full Review »
  3. Aug 29, 2011
    What is there to say? This game is a beast.
    Even today, the amount of content it offers rivals many full fledged releases- and much of it
    rates highly- perhaps not in finesse, but definitely in the fun factor. If you don't like the shooting, you'll probably like the driving, if you don't like the main missions: be a taxi driver, race motorbikes, put out fires, play dress-up...
    If you can't find something fun to do in GTA:SA, something's wrong. And not with the game.
    Fine, some of the controls are less than intuitive, some of the missions are pretty tedious, and Carl takes some getting used to. But it will be a long time before you can't just pick up this game, jack something fast, and feel like you're really going somewhere. And this transcends demographics- from hard-core gamers, to lazy stoners, this game has plenty of appeal.
    Full Review »