GTA: Chinatown Wars Arrives on iPhone Today

GTA’s DS Game Arrives on iPhone, Hoping for Boost in Sales

January 18, 2010 Chinatown Wars, the highly-acclaimed but low-selling GTA title for the Nintendo DS and Sony PSP, arrived on the iPhone today for $10. The arrival was a surprise, like so many iPhone game releases are, as it was preceded by little to no campaign or press release.

Chinatown Wars accurately modeled itself on Liberty City from GTA IV, down to little details such as signs and landmarks being in the same place as in GTA IV. While a top-down game like the original GTA and GTA II games, Chinatown Wars was lauded for its commitment to details and its excellent story. However, despite the critical acclaim, Chinatown Wars sold miserably low numbers, prompting Nintendo to declare that Rockstar’s advertising and PR campaign for the game was lackluster.

The adoption of the iPhone and iPod touch as a platform seems to be the right move for Rockstar. While Chinatown Wars didn’t sell well on the DS and PSP, the iPhone has been adopted by millions of users and the app store is incredibly popular and has been a solid vehicle for independent game distributors and more conventional publishers.

Only time will tell if Chinatown Wars finally finds a proper audience deserving of its acclaim. It is selling for $9.99.