Grand Theft Auto IV – Diary #3

gta postersGTA IV Diary: Entry #1, Entry #2, Entry #3, Entry #4

Day 5 | 29.14% done | 36 missions completed | 25:10 hours played.

Bridges Crossed – Flights Taken

Shortly after Diary Entry #2, I made it to Manhattan (err, Algonquin). The first thing I did was purchase a new outfit. Then I headed over to the helipad for a helicopter ride over Liberty City. Take a look at Nicko posing in his new gangsta suit in front of the helicopter (click for larger image).

GTA IV - Nicko Posing in front of Helicopter & Broker Bridge

The ride was fun, we flew up and down the length of Manhattan, over Times Square, Central Park, the Trump Tower, the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building.

But flying the helicopter myself was much more fun. I ‘accidentally’ jacked the helicopter for my second flight – then proceeded to dump the helicopter into the Hudson!  It’s much harder to fly than I thought it would be. Here’s me flying past the Statute of Liberty (Statue of Happiness).

GTA IV - Nicko Flying Helicopter Past Statue of Happiness at Sunset

They say it is modelled after Hillary Clinton. I didn’t get close enough to tell (maybe next time). I tried to get a look at Ground Zero but couldn’t see anything there, not even a memorial.

Tip: Take a cab or a junker to the helipad because when you return, your ride will be stolen. I lost my Porsche that way.

Today’s Achievements

“Wheelie Rider” (30 points) I spent more time on this achievement than any other so far. After attempting it probably 50 times on Liberty City streets (and breaking many bones), I took the advice of others and tried my luck on the Francis International Airport tarmac. I got it on my second try. Whoop, whoop!

Tip: Not all bike’s can do wheelies. None of the Harley’s can and the Hell’s Fury bike can’t. Find one that looks like an off road dirt bike to be certain. Or at least be sure you can pop a wheelie (pulling back on the left analogue stick at speed) on the city streets before taking the time to get to the airport.

“Walk Free” (50 points) After several tries I got Walk Free. This involves escaping a four star police hunt. I triggered the four star alert by driving onto the tarmac at Francis International. I escaped by driving in one of those huge square airport trucks to the base of the Algonquin Bridge (at Creek St.) and then simply walked across the foot-bridge. I suggest scoping out the foot-bridge first so you know where you are going.

“Under the Radar” (40 points) To get this achievement you need to fly the helicopter under each of the 14 GTA bridges. I attempted it immediately after gaining access to the helicopter.  Unfortunately you can only fly under 9 of the 15 bridges when Alderny Island (New Jersey) is still locked. If you attempt to fly under the Alderny Island bridges before unlocking it, you’ll be chased by other helicopters and shot out of the air.

Tip: When flying under bridges to achieve “Under the Radar”, if you access the map (start button) at the moment you are notified that you successfully flew  under the bridge, the map shows trophy icons over the bridges you have yet to fly under. Check the map quickly because the icons will disappear. I was hoping this sort of ‘icon’ help would be available after receiving similar stunt jump/pigeon kill success messages (showing where the outstanding jumps/pigeons are). They aren’t.

“Sightseer” (5 points) I tried to get this achievement but was unsuccessful (so far). To get it you must take six helicopter rides starting at each of the six landing circles. I was able to take just 4 of the 6 possible rides (no helicopters appeared at the other two circles). My guess is the other two won’t become available before Alderny Island (New Jersey) is unlocked.

Nicko Visits Times Square
GTA IV - Nicko Visits Times Square

Hidden Armour in Bohan

Maintaining health and wearing a Kevlar vest is key to survival in GTA. There are armour packs scattered around the city. I found one near the 2nd safe house on Bohan in the loading area just below the ‘L’ intersection at Attica and Folsom Way. Click on picture to see.

GTA IV - Location of Hidden Armour in Bohan

It’s the gift that keeps giving. When your armour is depleted, just go back for a free replenishment at any time.

[May 13, 2008 Update: A map of all hidden armour can be found here at Wiki Cheats.]

Ricky Gervais Sighting

I took Michelle to the comedy club on Algonquin (Manhattan) hoping to get to see the Ricky Gervais act. Another comedian was on that night. But, there was a poster of him outside the comedy club so I expect the next time I visit he’ll be headlining.

GTA IV - Ricky Gervais Poster Outside Comedy Club

Saving Cars (& helicopters)

I figured out how to park/save cars. To have two shiny new sports cars waiting for me each morning just park them in the yellow lines outside the safe-house before you save. Note that if you use them on a mission and don’t bring them back, they won’t magically return the next morning as I had hoped. My technic:

  1. If I’m going on a mission where I won’t be returning with my car, I jack a car and keep mine at home.
  2. If I find a nicer car while out and about, I ditch the old car and bring the new one home and save.

Tip 1: While you can squeeze a motorcycle or two in between two parked cars, you can’t save that way. In preparation for my Wheelie Rider achievement, I  tried squeezing 2 motorcycles between my parked Porsche and Ferrari. I lost both cars. Bottom Line: Only the last two vehicles will be saved per parking slot.

Tip 2: So far I’ve found no place to park a helicopter outside the hideout. Hey, it was worth a try. [Update: See Diary Entry #4 – I was able to park the helicopter outside safe houses after all.]

Tip 3: I read somewhere that you can keep 2 cars at EACH safe house. Whatever vehicles are parked at any safe house will save when you save. I haven’t verified this and really don’t see the point. I haven’t gone back to the 1st safe house after finding the second. Not yet anyway.

Free Pay & Spray

The saving process does not save the state of damage inflicted on your vehicles. If you want free auto repairs, park a banged up vehicle outside your hideout, save the game then either reload the save you just made or turn off the Xbox. The the next time you load/play the game, your vehicle will be restored back to new.

Tip: Note, just saving alone won’t fix the car, you must save, then reload your last save.

You May Need an XBox Live Account to Play??

I took the game over to my buddy Don’s house on Saturday. His XBLive account had expired. The game would not allow him to auto save or manually save his mission without being connected to  Xbox Live.  What’s up with that? How do people without XBox Live accounts play this game on the 360?

[Update: We created a new Xbox Account not associated with an Xbox Live account and played through that account and everything saved just fine. Thanks RandomRage.]

Oh my God! He Killed Kenny (the Preacher)

A persistent and obnoxious preacher awaits you outside of hideout 2. At first I ignored him. Later I punched him hoping he’d go away. After awhile I couldn’t take it any more so I walked up behind him and put a bullet in his head. God seems to like him because he is constantly resurrected. So, I’ve now taken to coming up with creative ways of killing him every time I pass by. So far, I’ve killed him with every weapon, squished him between cars, run him down with a motorcycle, threw a grenade at him, pushed a police car over him and shot him with a sniper from way down the block. He’s the only civilian in the game I don’t feel guilty killing. It’s kinda fun.

<<  Read Diary Entry #2 Read Diary Entry #4  >>


  1. // Reply

    The preacher was pretty funny, I stood outside and listened to him for a few minutes whenI first moved into that safehouse. Your friend probably had auto sign-in turned on, and it wouldn’t let him get into that profile because that profile was trying to get on Live and couldn’t. Tell him to try a different profile or turn off Live sign-in.

  2. // Reply

    Hey RandomRage. Thanks for that tip. Is the auto-sign on something that is a game option or an Xbox 360 option? I know he has his Xbox games to start immediately when the Xbox starts up (rather than going into the dashboard). Is that what you mean?

  3. // Reply

    It’d be in the dashboard, but actually, now that I think about it, you may not be able to unlink a profile from a gamertag. I don’t know, but I’ll poke around and see if I can find it. If he doesn’t care about achievements, he should be able to make a new profile and play on that. Otherwise, he’ll probably have to downgrade his gold membership to a silver, which at this point will involve calling the wonderfully accented people at xbox technical support.
    P.S., Michelle pissed me off, you’ll find out why soon enough.

  4. // Reply

    I found it. Pull up the guide, and click on your gamercard. The bottom option is auto sign-in, and you can go there to stop live from trying to connect.

  5. // Reply

    OK, thanks, I’ll let him know. I think his long term plan is to move his account from his current GamerTag to a new one … so this will solve itself in the longer run.

  6. // Reply

    Regarding the nice cars being stolen, that's true, even when I had them parked in front of the safehouse. Usually, these cars are stolen by myself and I take them back to the safehouse, but I noticed that if I cause trouble in front of the safehouse and the police end up coming, when I comeback after I ran from the police, my porsche or viper or other nice car is gone. I actually caught one police officer getting into one of these beautiful cars and trying to drive away in the heat of the moment. I had to pull the piggy out of my car and drive it away myself!!!

  7. // Reply

    i love gta iv its the best game u she
    ud make a nother for ps3

  8. // Reply

    i love gta iv its the best game u shernud make a nother for ps3

Leave a Reply