A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from May 03, 2008
Liberty City

Liberty City is the name of a fictional city in the video game Grand Theft Auto series, especially GTA IV. New York City has a Statue of Liberty; Liberty City has a Statue of Happiness. Liberty City has boroughs, just like New York City. There are many other similarities.

“Liberty City, USA” was trademarked in 2001 by the video game company. GTA’s “Liberty City” is clearly not based on the similarly named Liberty City in Miami, Florida. New York City was seldom called “Liberty City” before the video game.


Wikipedia: Liberty City (Grand Theft Auto)
Liberty City is a fictional city in Rockstar Games’ video games series Grand Theft Auto, based primarily on New York City. Three different incarnations of the city have appeared in various generations of the series.

The Grand Theft Auto rendition is portrayed as a city geographically similar to New York City, comprised of two mainland islands. The Grand Theft Auto III rendition (also featured in Grand Theft Auto Advance, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, and briefly in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas) is portrayed as a more generic metropolitan city that is loosely based on New York City, but consists of elements of other American cities. The Grand Theft Auto IV rendition is portrayed as a caricature of New York City, with Liberty City’s landmarks and geography based heavily on New York City’s. Liberty City’s four boroughs, as well as the adjacent state of Alderney correspond to four of New York City’s boroughs and New Jersey, respectively.

In every rendition of the city, Liberty City is primarily depicted as a large city with a sizable population (4 million in the Grand Theft Auto III rendition, with double the amount in Grand Theft Auto IV), featuring a complete transportation infrastructure of roads and railways, and is located on a geographical configuration of shorelines and islands, similar to that of New York City. The city has been described as one suffering from crime and corruption, with the presence of organized crime, feuding street gangs, petty criminals, and rampant misconduct among city officials and law enforcement. Parts of Liberty City have also suffered major damage and loss from bombings, which are depicted as being orchestrated by local criminals. Some of these damages, however, have been repaired or resulted in complete redevelopment of an entire area.

Liberty City is also located in the same fictional universe as Vice City, Carcer City, and San Andreas, other cities portrayed in games throughout the series. Liberty City is the most used fictional setting in the series: it is prominently featured in five of the nine stand-alone Grand Theft Auto games, with a cameo appearance in a further two.

Wikipedia: Statue of Liberty
Liberty Enlightening the World (French: La liberté éclairant le monde), known more commonly as the Statue of Liberty (Statue de la Liberté), was presented to the United States by the people of France in 1886. It stands at Liberty Island (part of New York but physically on the New Jersey side of the New York Harbor) as a welcome to all visitors, immigrants, and returning Americans. The copper patina-clad statue, dedicated on October 28, 1886, commemorates the centennial of the United States and is a gesture of friendship from France to the U.S. Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi sculpted the statue and obtained a U.S. patent useful for raising construction funds through the sale of miniatures. Alexandre Gustave Eiffel (designer of the Eiffel Tower) engineered the internal structure. Eugène Viollet-le-Duc was responsible for the choice of copper in the statue’s construction and adoption of the repoussé technique.

The statue is of a robed woman holding a lit flame, and is made of a sheeting of pure copper, hung on a framework of steel (originally puddled iron) with the exception of the flame of the torch, which is coated in gold leaf (originally made of stained glass and lit from the inside.) It stands atop a rectangular stonework pedestal with a foundation in the shape of an irregular eleven-pointed star. The statue is 151 ft (46 m) tall, but with the pedestal and foundation, it is 305 ft (93 m) tall.

Worldwide, the Statue of Liberty is one of the most recognizable icons of the United States, and, more generally, represents liberty and escape from oppression. The Statue of Liberty was, from 1886 until the jet age, often one of the first glimpses of the United States for millions of immigrants after ocean voyages from Europe. Visually, the Statue of Liberty appears to draw inspiration from il Sancarlone or the Colossus of Rhodes.

The statue is a central part of Statue of Liberty National Monument, administered by the National Park Service.
(...)
In popular culture
(...)
Also, in the video game Grand Theft Auto IV as the Statue of Happiness in a video game world known as Liberty City.

Wikipedia: Liberty City, Miami, Florida
Liberty City is a neighborhood in northwest Miami, Florida, within Miami’s city limits.

The area comprises more than half of Miami-Dade County’s nearly half a million African Americans (as of 2000 Census). Liberty City’s boundaries are roughly as follows: Northwest 79th Street to the north, Northwest 27th Avenue to the west, Northwest 41st Street to the south, and Interstate 95 to the east.

Liberty City is named for the Liberty Square Housing Project built in the late 1930s for Miami’s low-income African-Americans, the second of its kind in the South at the time.

wcbstv.com
PS3 Gamers Line Up For GTA IV
Lastest Grand Theft Auto Game Set In Parody Of New York City

NEW YORK (CBS) ― Grand Theft Auto IV went on sale at midnight Tuesday, and fans waited on long lines to pay up to $90 for a special edition of the game set in a seedy, fictional environment called Liberty City that clearly resembles New York.

The trailer shows well-known landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Cyclone in Coney Island.

To some afficionados, it’s sets a new standard for what’s possible in interactive arts. They see it as an amusing satire of New York City where Brooklyn is called Broker, a place for churches, hipsters and housing developments, and Manhattan is called Algonquin, described as “expensive, snooty and over.”

Wired.com
GTA IV Swag: Replica of ‘Statue of Happiness’
By Chris Kohler April 29, 2008 | 1:52:56 PM
Check out Grand Theft Auto IV’s slightly off-kilter version of the Statue of Liberty.

This is one of the greatest ridiculous gimcracks ever included with media mailings of a videogame, and I’ve seen a lot of them, so I should know.

The “Statue of Happiness” is a solid plaster-or-something replica of the famous monument, identical to the sort you’d buy if you took a trip to New York City, except it’s Liberty City’s bizarro-world version.

Note that instead of creating a ridiculous version of the statue, it’s ever-so-slightly off. The face is more cartoony. The breasts are more pronounced, but not over-the-top. And it’s a coffee cup in her hand. It’s that sort of beautiful, subtle parody at which Rockstar is so adept.

New York (NY) Times
A Strange City Called Home
By DAVE ITZKOFF
Published: May 4, 2008
(...)
Liberty City, the pixilated playground where the action of Grand Theft Auto IV occurs, is New York City, and it is not.
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As many others have already noted, Liberty City is a dead ringer for New York: It’s divided into boroughs with distinct populations and architectural styles; it has most of the same suspension bridges and historic landmarks in the places you’d expect to find them; and its streets are always teeming with traffic and unruly pedestrians.
(...)
Indeed, much of Liberty City’s map is made up of direct analogues of real New York neighborhoods and locations, often renamed with winking, sophomoric monikers that could have come from Mad magazine: Manhattan is Algonquin and Queens is Dukes; the giant neon Pepsi-Cola sign in Long Island City advertises a beverage called Sprunk; and the MetLife skyscraper on Park Avenue has been replaced with the Getalife Building.

(Trademark)
Word Mark LIBERTY CITY, USA.
Goods and Services IC 009. US 021 023 026 036 038. G & S: computer game software, video game software, video game programs, video game cartridges. FIRST USE: 20011031. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 20011031
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 76489699
Filing Date February 14, 2003
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition October 7, 2003
Registration Number 2800098
Registration Date December 30, 2003
Owner (REGISTRANT) Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. CORPORATION DELAWARE 622 Broadway New York NEW YORK 10012
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Alexandra Nicholson, Esq.
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityNicknames/Slogans • (3) Comments • Saturday, May 03, 2008 • Permalink


Interesting read.  The game has come a long way since then, controversies aside, its a popular game.

Posted by bill  on  03/25  at  12:57 AM

Grand theft auto is one of my favorite offline games. I love computer games like arcade, FPS and other games.

Posted by QA training  on  08/16  at  07:31 PM

Can you please educate me on how to download this to my phone? I’d like to play those during break time.

Posted by steel truss bridge  on  09/26  at  01:36 AM

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