The biggest problem with GTA IV is that they took away the element of fun which was so critical to the success of the earlier games and failed to replace it with anything comparible. Instead, it was a boreish realistic sandbox with dull visuals and sluggish gameplay. Episodes from Liberty City being an expansion to GTA IV doesn't entirely shed these issues, but it's immediately clear that Rockstar had learned from their mistakes. The Lost & Damned offered a gritty, stylistic and savage campaign involving a motorcycle gang and The Ballad of Gay Tony offered a more colourful, nightlife-inspired funfest romp through Liberty City with crazy vehicular and weaponary additions which added flavour to the whole experience. The long and short of it that Episodes from Liberty City not only learns from it's mistakes, but it succeeds in many areas that GTA IV failed in. Strongly recommended.