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“I got most of the way through it, but I got stuck on this one mission…”
Welcome to Watchmojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the top ten hardest Grand Theft Auto missions.
For this list, we're looking at those missions that had us throwing our controllers at the screen out of frustration whether it be due to strange new mechanics or insurmountable odds. We’ll also be sticking to the 3D, 3rd person entries in the series.
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#10: Three Leaf Clover "Grand Theft Auto IV" (2008)
It's considered to be one of the best missions in the game, but it's also one of the most frustrating. In it, Niko and Packie, along with some friends, rob a bank. The frustrating part comes when you have to shoot your way out of the bank and down the street, "Heat"-style. The barrage of cops make for tough opponents, and the long mission length adds to the frustration. When you're finally done shooting, you have to escape a three star wanted level. It's a loud, chaotic nightmare.
#9: S.A.M "Grand Theft Auto III" (2001)
In this mission, you are given the almost impossible task of shooting down an airplane in mid-flight and then collecting its dropped packages while being pursued by the police. As if shooting down the plane wasn't hard enough, the limitless police make this mission almost impossible, as their sheer numbers are sure to leave you wasted time and time again. You have to drive all the way back to the mainland with a four star wanted level, complete with a helicopter, so escape and completion come only to the most patient.
#8: The Snow Storm "Grand Theft Auto IV" (2008)
GTA and drugs go together like peanut butter and jelly, so it's no surprise that this mission sees Niko retrieving a stolen batch of cocaine for friend Elizabeta. To complete the mission, you have to not only shoot your way through countless thugs, but also a heavily armed squad of N.O.O.S.E officers. Escape is barely manageable, as the police have heavy artillery and the escape routes are blocked. It's a frustrating mission filled with trial-and-error, and lots of deaths.
#7: Payday for Ray "Grand Theft Auto III" (2001)
Remember the good old days of payphones? Neither do I, but anyway, in this mission, Claude is tasked with racing around Staunton Island, visiting four different payphones for Ray in a set amount of time. Timed missions are always a pain in these games, as the added stress of a time limit only adds to the frustration. As if that wasn't bad enough, the payphones are very far apart, and the second phone is placed in spot that appears to be underground, leading you into a dead end before you can barely get started.
#6: Espresso-2-Go! "Grand Theft Auto III" (2001)
Man, this old game was hard, wasn't it? For this mission, Claude is tasked with driving around the entirety of Liberty City while taking out coffee stands which are of course, fronts for illegal activities. As is the custom,, your hectic drive around the entire city is timed, and if that wasn't enough, each coffee stand is heavily guarded by Cartel members. The mission had such infamy that Rockstar changed the Cartel guns from shotguns to uzis to make the mission easier for players. You know it's unfair when the developer admits it.
#5: Dildo Dodo "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" (2002)
Flying has never been GTA's strong suit, as "Flight School" from "San Andreas" can attest, and that fault is on full display in this mission which sees Tommy distributing pornographic promotional flyers throughout the city. The player must fly through small, circular checkpoints to drop the flyers, and of course, there is an annoying time limit. The mission is made especially hard due to the proximity of the checkpoints with small buildings, which the plane is liable to crash into. The awkward controls of the seaplane don't help either, making this mission completely frustrating.
#4: Wrong Side of the Tracks "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas" (2004)
It's always frustrating when the fate of a mission is in the hands of the atrocious AI. In this mission, CJ and Big Smoke are chasing down some rival gang members who are on a train, while on a dirt bike. It doesn't sound too bad, but not only do you have to keep up with the train, you have to dodge incoming obstacles, making it a chore to accomplish. The worst offender is the AI: Smoke not only shoots worse than a stormtrooper, but he berates you every time you fail.
#3: Bomb da Base Act II "Grand Theft Auto III" (2001)
You would think standing stationary and picking off targets with a sniper rifle would be an easy job, but you would be wrong. In this mission, you provide sniper support for 8-Ball as he plants bombs on a boat. The mission is difficult because the enemies' locations are so hard to pinpoint that by the time you do, 8-Ball is already long dead. 8-Ball is also not the smartest ally, and shows very little concern for his own well being throughout the ordeal.
#2: Demolition Man "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" (2002)
Remember how we said flying was never GTA's strong suit? This is even worse. This mission sees Tommy flying an RC helicopter, planting bombs at various locations to destroy a building. This is probably the first time you’ll have tried a helicopter by this point in the game, and let’s just say this can be a difficult learning experience. It also doesn't help that—say it with me now—the mission is on a timer—or that there are angry construction workers trying to destroy your helicopter with hammers. Weird controls, a timer, and people trying to stop you? It's basically an assortment of everything which makes a frustrating mission.
Before we look at our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.
- The Driver "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" (2002)
- The Big Score "Grand Theft Auto V" (2013)
- Hostile Takeover "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories" (2006)
#1: Supply Lines... "Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas" (2004)
What’s with the damn model aircraft? Sure to strike nostalgic fear in any San Andreas fan, this mission is responsible for many and abandoned save file. This mission sees CJ flying an RC plane and shooting Zero's rival's courier vans. It's extremely frustrating, as the plane has very limited fuel, making the flight across town next to impossible. The trick is to glide instead of holding the gas down, but that in turn makes the mission extremely slow. And that does count shooting the targets which is way easier said than done. This mission is frustration incarnate.
Do you agree with our list? Which mission made you want to let out your anger on thousands of NPC’s? For more easy going top 10’s published daily, be sure to subscribe to Watchmojo.com.