Enduring Classics: Amazing Open-World Games That Stand the Test of Time

It’s pretty impossible to be a gamer and not have any sort of appreciation for the open-world genre. That’s because open-world games, by definition, give the player the freedom to do pretty much all he wants in the game as he gets to interact with the environment a lot. That’s why GTA games are so beloved, and they will always be.

However, there are also such things as bad open-world games out there, whether we like to admit it or not. But for today, we will have to speak about some of the iconic games of such kind that have gone down in history. Such games, despite being very old, managed to stay the test of time. Behold our nominations:

GTA San Andreas

GTA San Andreas was released 20 years ago, in 2004, and it still stands as one of the greatest open-world games ever released. That’s because even after you finish the story mode of the game, there is still a ton of fun stuff to do. You can be a paramedic, a pimp, a taxi driver, a policeman, rob houses at night, engage in gang wars and illegal races across town, and a lot more.

GTA SA offers an extremely vast open-world environment with three major cities and plenty of countryside. There are around 100 main missions and lots of other side missions that the player can do. The game is also teeming with collectibles that will stimulate you to explore the vast open-world as much as possible. There are even strong reasons to believe that GTA SA was the best game in the series ever.

Mafia II

Mafia II is easily one of the best gangster games ever made, and it stands out for its timeline set in the ’40s and ’50s. You play as Vito Scaletta, a war veteran who comes to Empire Bay in order to start a new life. He immediately runs into all kinds of trouble alongside his friend Joe Barbaro.

Despite coming out in 2010, Mafia II is a fabulous and extremely immersive game in all its aspects: the story is very exciting, the graphics look spectacular for a game released 14 years ago, the radio stations and cars will immediately convince you that you are traveling back in time, and the map is also pretty diverse.


GTA V came out in 2013, and it still remains a highly popular open-world game even today. It’s actually in the top 3 best-selling games in the industry, and for good reasons. GTA V offers much better graphics than the predecessor titles of the Grand Theft Auto series, while it also proposes an entirely different story and new characters. Instead of just one protagonist character, GTA V has three of them: Trevor, Michael, and Franklin. The player can choose either one of these characters to use at first, but playing with all of them is necessary to finish the storyline.

While the map of GTA V is not so diverse as the one of GTA San Andreas, for instance, there’s still a lot of fun stuff to do in the 2013 game. In GTA V, you can swim, fight against the police, drive lots of fast cars, participate in street racing, and a lot more.


GTA IV, the predecessor of GTA V that came out in 2008, remains a highly-immersive and respected game even today. GTA IV presents the adventures of Niko Bellic, a Bosnian who has been involved in the Yugoslavian War in Europe and decides to come to Liberty City (fictional New York) to start a new life, hopefully away from killing. But he will soon get involved in new deadly maneuvers and situations, as he needs to let aside any moral principles if he wants to survive.

GTA IV stands out for its very convincing game mechanics during shootouts. The open-world environment is pretty huge, as it consists of big islands and plenty of buildings to enter and explore.

GTA Vice City

Some people say that you can’t be a true gamer if you’ve never played GTA Vice City, and who are we to contradict them? That’s because GTA Vice City has also been a highly influential open-world game, probably the most influential of them all. Released in 2002 and set in Vice City (fictional Miami) of the ’80s, GTA Vice City will rapidly captive the player due to its old-school vibe. There are lots of fast cars and unforgettable radio stations in this game that have written history.

In GTA Vice City, you step in the shoes of Tommy Vercetti, a guy who will have to find his meaning in life on the streets of Vice City in unorthodox ways. The game was heavily inspired by the Scarface movie from 1983, where Al Pacino was in the main role of a Cuban immigrant who came to the States to get rid of the communist regime.

Scarface: The World is Yours

Scarface: The World is Yours is a game that came out in 2006, and it has Tony Montana in the main role, the same character played by Al Pacino in the Scarface movie from 1983. This game proved once again that video game adaptations after movies don’t necessarily have to be boring. Scarface: The World is Yours has plenty of fun stuff to do, and there are plenty of iconic lines from Tony Montana.

Feel free to tell us about your own favorite open-world games!

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