- "My cousin is here!"
- ― Roman Bellic
The Cousins Bellic is the first storyline mission in Grand Theft Auto IV.
This mission introduces the player to the casual driving of cars.
Plot and Walkthrough
The scene begins with the sounds of sado-masochism in a room aboard the Platypus. Niko Bellic, protagonist, begins knocking on the door, attempting to call Dave out of the room. Another person, Hossan Ramzy, calls to Niko, telling him to forget about Dave, and that they need to prepare for the docking. As Niko and Hossan discuss the "Land of Opportunity," the ship is shown nearing the Statue of Happiness. Niko tells of his cousin Roman's successes: sports cars, condos, parties, women, etc., while a cook is shown inspecting a diamond, and then mixing it into a mixture in a mixing bowl. The Platypus docks, and Niko and the other crew members depart the ship, and many are greeted by friends and family, until the only one left is Niko.
When Roman finally arrives (drunk), he's actually driving a taxi. Niko asks about it and Roman mumbles that his sports car is in the shop. He's too plastered to drive himself, so he gets in the passenger seat and asks Niko to drive them to his apartment.
The drive begins near the docks in East Hook. The on-screen instructions explain driving basics and how to use the radar map. The GPS system plots a course highlighted by a yellow line on your radar. One must simply follow the yellow line (or any other route- the GPS will adapt) to Roman's apartment in Hove Beach, Broker. Use caution not to collide with vehicles - particularly police vehicles. This is particularly the case for those who are familiar with the GTA III-era vehicle driving controls, as they differ substantially in GTA IV. Roman goes on to explain that due to a terrorist scare, it will be best if Niko stays in Broker, as Niko has not got a visa.
The closing scene showcases the tiny apartment in which Roman lives. Niko confronts him with his lies, and Roman insists that luxury and money are coming. He rushes off to get his taxi back to the taxi firm that he owns, and tells Niko to meet him there. As he leaves, he gets what appears to be a nasty call from someone he calls "Vlad".
|The Cousins Bellic|
- It might be a good idea to get some weapons hidden in areas around Broker, Dukes and Bohan for your own protection, before completing this mission, as the area around Hove Beach is very rough, and seeing as though you can't get any weapons until Jamaican Heat or Do You Have Protection?. Though if you get wasted, busted or destroy Roman's Cab while doing so, the mission will fail and restart and you will end up with no weapons at all. It is not recommended to collect weapons located in Algonquin and Alderney as you will receive a six-star wanted level and will most likely be wasted.
- Completing this mission will immediately grant you the Achievement/Trophy, "Off The Boat".
- The first song heard in the game is "Soviet Connection" by Michael Hunter, GTA IV's theme. The second song heard is "Schweine" by Glukoza, inside Roman's cab. It is featured on the in-game radio station Vladivostok FM.
- Roman's Taxi in this mission has less acceleration than usual, presumably because this is the first car driven by new players that are not yet familiar with the driving style (especially those familiar with the controls used in the 3D Universe games, as opposed to the different controls used in GTA IV).
- The opening of the Rockstar game Red Dead Redemption mirrors this mission, as the protagonists (Niko Bellic and John Marston) arrive by boat and a car is lifted off the boat.
- The song in Roman's car will change if the player skips the cutscene. But it will always be in Vladivostok FM.
- Roman tells Niko to "Drive us [them] to our [their] place on Mohawk [Ave.]". This makes it look like Niko already knows his way around the city, which is strange considering that he just arrived. This is possibly an overlook in dialogue.
- Roman also says: "You without a visa, I would stay in Broker", this reveals that Niko is a illegal immigrant in America, this is one of only two times that this is mentioned in the storyline. The second time is in Hossan's stranger mission.
- Two important elements of the story this game and its two episodic packs (Lost and Damned & The Ballad of Gay Tony) briefly appear in the opening cutscene; the Diamonds and the Heroin.
- This is the first appearance of Niko Bellic, Roman Bellic, Hossan Ramzy, and The Cook.
- Niko places his suitcase next to the front door of the apartment, but when the cutscene ends, the suitcase is no longer there.
- If the player tries to enter the apartment before parking in the space (and thus starting the cutscene), it will be locked.
- This is one of two missions to feature both the diamonds and the heroin, the other one being "Departure Time". Coincidentally, these are the first and last points in the GTA IV Era, bringing the story of the diamonds and heroin to an end.
- No matter what, Roman cannot be taken out of his cab, as shooting at him would result in his death, which would restart the mission. This is properly the only time besides Clean and Serene and I Luv LC that a mission restarts automatically after a mission failure since they are the opening missions of their respective games. (Though if the player gets arrested, Roman will get out of the cab and walk away as the mission will restart once again).
- The player doesn't have to complete the mission as they can freely drive around Liberty City as long as they don't die or destroy the cab. Driving past the bridges connecting to Algonquin will give you an immediate and full fatal six-star wanted-level.
- In the third trailer for the game, "Move Up, Ladies," the scene with Roman meeting Niko is shown during the day while in-game the mission takes place at night.
- In this mission and before the next one, the player cannot use the phone other than to use multiplayer, as you cannot dial any numbers, meaning you can't use cheats or call any of the emergency services from Liberty City.
- Niko says " Drago Dirat Dicu " in this specific mission. Many people consider this a "half and half" sentence (meaning that all the words used in this sentence are not of the same language). It was later confirmed by Michael Hollick at Comic-Con that all the words are part of the ancient Serbian language and are considered a part of Serbian in Yugoslavia and most parts of Russia.
- Roman comments on how the city is a "big Üder Milken ice cream shop", with "36 flavors of titty". This is a reference to Baskin and Robbins, which is notable for having 36 flavors of ice cream.
- The portion of the opening cutscene in which Roman enters in his cab is a possible reference to a similar scene from the 1971 film The French Connection in which a Lincoln Continental (on which Roman's taxi is based) drives at speed onto a Brooklyn dock as a car is being lowered from a nearby ship.