The Grand Theft Auto series is one of the most accomplished crime simulators ever created.
My first contact with the series was when I was still a child and my irresponsible parents got me a copy of GTA: Vice City for PC. To this day I still thank them for never reading ESRB ratings.
Released back in 2001, the sixth game in Rockstar’s famous franchise was a blast.
It kept the same engine as GTA3, but presented a stylish world of conflicting cultures and criminality in the totally tubular 1980s Miami.
Modding as a whole was still in its infancy back when Vice City came out. But a lot has changed since then, and it seems like now there’s so many mods for Vice City that it’s tough to know where to look!
Luckily I’m here to weed out the good stuff for you.
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But before we get down to business, I recommend installing the CLEO library first. It’s totally free and it’s a base requirement for most Vice City mods.
30. Custom Radio Station
Mods are all about changing the way the game plays. And while setting up your own custom radio station doesn’t require you to download anything other than your favorite songs, I’d say it’s worth mentioning.
It’s actually one of the game’s base features (although mods do exist too).
But you may not realize this comes with the game if nobody tells you.
To do this, you’ll need songs to be in an mp3 format.
Once you have that just drop them in the “mp3” folder in your main GTA: Vice City directory.
It’s such a simple thing to do, and yet so many games neglect to give users that freedom!
29. HD Radio Icons
Since we’re already messing with the game’s radio stations, consider installing HD Radio Icons by modder Firefly.
A lot of mods here aim to make your GTA: Vice City experience look out of this world. If you’re already going through all that trouble, it makes no sense not to address every little detail – even if it’s just the radio icons.
It’s a short and sweet mod with an easy install that will seamlessly improve your cruisin’ experience.
28. Vice City Hi-Res Loadscreen
Another small but meaningful improvement for your GTA: Vice City is this High-Resolution Loadscreen, created by modder UJibU4.
What’s the point of adding HD effects, particles, and textures when you’ll be met with ugly low-resolution artwork? We can do better.
This HD load screen uses only original artwork from Rockstar, restored from both official wallpapers and high-quality box art scans to keep an authentic Vice City aesthetic.
27. GTA: Vice City Ultimate Trainer
Something I’ll never forget about my formative years is how I’d always buy cheat code lists from my upperclassmen, then hurry home to try them out on my PC games.
Nowadays you can find that everywhere on the Internet.
But why would you waste your time entering cheat codes when you can just set every cheat to a key on your keyboard?
That’s what this Ultimate Trainer by modder LithJoe helps you do.
With it you can control the weather, replenish health and armor, grant yourself awesome weapons, and even manage your Wanted level with a simple press of a button. Nifty!
26. Vice City HD Effects
Vice City HD Effects by Nobeus does exactly what its name suggests.
It adds many new visual effects, such as realistic blood splattering, and also improves others like water, gunshot flashes, and even the traces left by burnt tire rubber.
One of my favorite features is the addition of clouds of smoke from both cars and weapons, which float up into the sky in a really organic manner.
It’s unlike anything seen in games from back in the day.
25. Windowed Mod
Nowadays most games let you start them on windowed mode.
Not only do many games just run better on lower-end PCs this way, but it gives you a bit more freedom regarding which resolution you want to play in.
This mod by ThirteenAG simply adds the feature for GTA: Vice City, which becomes really important when you consider that the base game doesn’t support widescreen aspect ratios.
Other than that, it’s also handy for streamers. And anyone who just likes jumping between programs on the fly without the hassle inherent to fullscreen games.
24. Widescreen Fix
But making the game run in windowed mode isn’t enough to solve all of your resolution issues. Especially if what you’re trying to achieve is a game that runs on a modern 16:9 ratio.
Also made by ThirteenAG (you’ll see that name pretty often in GTA modding), this easy-to-install fix will let you take the resolution up to Full HD and beyond with no problem.
It’s also available for San Andreas and a bunch of other old-timey games, so if you’re ever in a pickle with an outdated aspect ratio, you know exactly where to look.
23. Frame Limit Adjuster
The last of the fundamental adjustments you’ll need to install to get your Vice City up to modern graphical standards is the Frame Limit Adjuster, released by ThirteenAG.
This nifty tool frees your game from its default 30fps cap so it can take full advantage of your modern gaming rig and run in a fluid 60fps.
Granted, this one is a bit harder to install. You’ll need to get the previously mentioned CLEO library and set a couple of things up manually.
But there are countless tutorials on YouTube so you’ll have it up and running in no time.
22. New Vice City 2011
There’s only so much content and detail a single development team can put into a game while keeping up with release dates.
Luckily, modders have no such constraints. And their work can help make our favorite games considerably deeper.
New Vice City 2011 by modding group Modstar goes a long way towards a more realistic city life by introducing a fuel system for all vehicles.
If gas is too expensive for you, there’s also public transportation throughout the map. And you can call taxis to your location too. This is a big overhaul!
With this mod you can even call 911 to get police protection, as long as you’re not the one committing crimes.
There’s too much to cover by myself, so go on and give it a try!
21. Light Saber
GTA: Vice City features a wealth of weapons to impose your superiority over other criminals and police forces.
But can there ever be enough?
One of the most unique options in terms of melee weaponry is RC12’s Light Saber, which lets you wield an energy blade like those featured in everyone’s favorite space-fantasy epic.
With this flashy saber, you’ll feel like a low-poly version of No More Heroes’ Travis.
It really doesn’t get any cooler than this.
20. GTA: State of Liberty
The Grand Theft Auto games all take place in an alternate version of the USA. Most of them in the fictional State of Liberty, where you can find San Andreas, Vice City, and Liberty City.
This massive mod endeavors to bring together the settings from GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas into a single, gigantic, playable map. Complete with iconic landmarks like the Statue of Liberty.
It’s huge, seriously.
Due to the unpredictable nature of fan-projects, the mod is still in development even after 10 years!
But there are several playable builds with most completed features. Definitely worth a try!
19. GVBP ReShade
The GVBP ReShade injects Vice City with improved lighting, shadows, and other effects that give the game a much more modern look.
It was made by the GTA Vice City Beautification Project (hence the name) for use with several other graphic mods to achieve the best-looking Vice City possible.
If you’re interested in what they’re offering, swing by their website for more information and an easy-to-follow guide!
18. GTA Vice City – Definitive Edition
Generally I’d tell you to stay away from anything calling itself the “Definitive” anything.
But this mod by Qualcom does a lot to justify the self-congratulating title.
It brings together many mods covered in our ranking, such as the Widescreen Fix and Windowed Mode, along with some other tweaks to create an easy-to-install catch-all build.
It even includes the CLEO library, saving you a lot of troublesome setup in the first place.
If you’re looking for a quick update to your game so you can go back to playing in no time, this is it.
17. GTA Vice City: Updated Classic
The thing with universal fixes such as the “Definitive Edition” is that every mod creator has a different view of what’s essential and what can be left alone.
Another great build that’ll make your game feel more fluid and fix several issues is this “Updated Classic” by Philips_27, which includes functional headlights on your cars, fixes the sound of grenades, and adds better weapons and radar icons.
Other than that it also restores several features present in the console versions of GTA: Vice City, such as rotating loading screens and much more.
This comes with a lot, so yeah you’ll have to try it for yourself to see.
16. Nitrous Oxide
No, this mod won’t make Tommy Vercetti laugh uncontrollably and have mild hallucinations.
This is a 2001 game people. Have some decency!
This Nitrous Oxide is for your vehicle, and you can get it by going to the NOS Garage next to Washington Pay’n’Spray.
Once you’ve installed it on your car you’ll have access to an unlimited speed boost. Perfect for pulling off stunts or just losing the cops fast.
You can activate or deactivate the mod at your leisure by typing NEEDFORSPEED, which is appropriate considering all sound effects are from Need For Speed Underground 2.
15. Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4
And what better to try out your newly-installed NOS than with one of the coolest, fastest supercars from the last decade?
The Lamborghini Aventador is my favorite car ever. Which is why I picked it for the ranking.
That said, there is an array of custom cars you can mod into Vice City for a personalized cruisin’ experience.
You won’t find anything cooler than the Aventador, though.
14. VC Wardrobe Mod
Speaking of customizing your Vice City experience, why not add an expansive wardrobe to express yourself through stylish threads?
This mod by Rocky24pl introduces a functional wardrobe just like the one in Liberty City Stories, letting you change your looks whenever you feel compelled to.
Outfits will gradually show up as you progress through the campaign, in a way that’s so organic you might even forget this isn’t a vanilla feature.
13. First Person View
One of the most significant gameplay additions made by the super-famous GTAV is the possibility of playing in first-person, only possible in the PC, PS4, and Xbox One versions of the game.
This fantastic mod by GeniusZ introduces the feature to GTA: Vice City. Despite some bizarre details like steering wheels that don’t move and twisted arms when driving a bike.
It’s surprisingly competent, and it adds a lot to the experience.
Murdering pedestrians in cold blood has never been this immersive.
12. Mod Loader
Sometimes it can be hard to keep track of every mod you’ve ever installed. Let alone find out what’s going on if they ever start conflicting with one another (which is definitely more common than you’d think).
To streamline the GTA: Vice City modding experience, creator Link2012 offers us this nifty tool.
The Vice City Mod Loader will let you install and uninstall mods with a click of a button. And it removes the need to mess with your base game’s directories, making it remarkably safe.
It even lets you load certain mods while the game is already running and see the changes in mere moments. Perfect for when you go mod-hunting and want to try stuff out efficiently.
11. CLEO Parkour
After you’ve installed the CLEO library we mentioned at the beginning of the ranking, the doors open to a wide variety of complex mods. One of the best is CLEO Parkour by Ford1986.
This mod won’t turn your game into Assassin’s Creed or Mirror’s Edge.
But it will let you pull off several cool tricks like handstands, rolling in different directions, and believe it or not, sitting on benches!
It’ll also let you swim considerably faster and generally make Vice City a more dynamic experience.
10. HD Tommy
What good is improving textures, adding sophisticated visual effects, or making your game widescreen-compatible if your main character looks more blocky than Minecraft’s Steve?
Creator Goin-god helps us get a more cohesive improved visual experience with his HD Tommy Vercetti model, which gives his entire body a more detailed look.
Admittedly it’s a bit weird when you see his high-poly self among the hordes of blocky NPCs. But considering you’re always looking at Tommy’s back, you’re definitely getting more than you give.
9. Photocamera Mod
Lately I’ve gotten into the beautiful world of games with robust photo modes.
It’s just a pleasure to capture your best and worst gaming moments in pictures you can share with your peeps.
This Photocamera Mod by NRShaggy is far from Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey’s photo mode. But it’s a step in the right direction.
Plus it lets you take selfies, which is absolutely hilarious.
Once taken, pictures are stored in JPG format for later perusing or sharing online or whatever you wanna do. Way better than regular screenshots!
8. Grand Theft Auto RE: Liberty City Stories
GTA: Liberty City Stories on the PSP features a great story with lovable characters, making it a favorite among a sizable portion of the GTA fanbase.
Modder Ryadica926 is among them. And they decided to bring their favorite story to Vice City’s engine so they could play it with better graphics and on the PC.
The result is this technically-impressive “remake” of Liberty City Stories, which features Staunton Island, Portland Island, and Shoreside Vale.
It also lets you play through the entire campaign which is really massive. This mod will keep you busy for hours on end, guaranteed.
7. GTA: Long Night
One of Vice City’s most celebrated mods is the classic Long Night.
It turns the entire game into a sort of old-school zombie flick like Night of the Living Dead. Maybe not a mod for everyone, but certainly some will enjoy it.
Developed by The Fighting Hellfish, this horror-filled experience features over 20 new missions and six playable characters who’ll fight to survive the hordes of zombies running all around Vice City.
These new missions may not be the hardest you’ll ever face, but they will keep you entertained. Especially for OG fans of the game.
Of course, it also puts 25 new unique weapons at your disposal to survive the zombie uprising.
It even adds some new radio stations that are more in line with the supernatural ambiance. Now that’s craftsmanship.
6. GTA: East Coast Stories
The US East Coast is home to a diverse population with contrasting cultures and a lot of stories to tell. Especially in GTA’s action-filled universe where anything is possible.
This massive overhaul by Swoorup brings together the bright Vice City and the dark, gritty landscape of Liberty City into a single playable map.
This serves as the setting for its own storyline, which takes place in 1993, some years after Tommy Vercetti’s criminal takeover. It feels like a whole new game(and in many ways it kind of is).
While many other mods attempt to bring together these iconic locations, this is definitely the most accomplished endeavor.
5. Grand Theft Auto: Shine o’ Vice
Taking place a year after Tommy Vercetti became the head king pin, Shine o’Vice follows a newbie mobster from Liberty City who comes to Vice City in pursuit of his brother’s killer.
It’s still in development, but Pistukas Mods’ narrative-driven overhaul promises to become one of the greatest mods ever released for GTA: Vice City.
Not only is the demo absolutely brilliant, but the developer’s work on a GTAIII mod Frosted Winter is a thing of beauty. I’d say that gives them plenty of street-cred in the modding community and it means Shine o’ Vice is likely to turn out epic.
4. Vice City ENB Series
One of GTA: Vice City’s most amazing graphical enhancements comes from the Vice City ENB series.
This fantastic mod brings several new visual effects to the Vice City engine, including reflections on metallic surfaces such as cars, and even the infamous cinematic lens flare. Plus a whole lot more that you won’t notice till you play with this turned on.
You’ll also notice some interesting tweaks when driving, and rain has never looked this good.
Considering the marginal performance cost and simple install, this is a must-have.
3. Silent Patch
Easily the most famous GTA: Vice City mod has to be the Silent Patch, which fixes a stupidly long list of bugs overlooked by Rockstar, even after so many updates.
The patch, made by prolific modder Silent, also brings back several features only available on console, giving you the most complete Vice City experience.
If you’re a fan of other open-world games like the original Far Cry, The Godfather, or even San Andreas (which has a huge list of its own mods) then be sure to check out the Silent Patches for each of those classic titles.
2. Vice Cry: Remastered
While this article is focused on mods for GTA: Vice City, I’ll have to make an exception to talk about Vice Cry: Remastered.
This is a GTAV mod at its core so you would mod this on top of GTA5. But it brings the Vice City experience directly to the newest engine.
Basically, imagine GTA5, but as Vice City.
If what you’re looking for is to experience the 80s-inspired storyline and locales of Vice City, this is the best way to do it in high def.
Not only does it feature the entire VC map, but also the classic vehicles and the whole campaign.
Now this will not be as reminiscent to anyone who played the original game back in 2001. This really does feel “different”, because it’s running on top of GTA 5.
But it’s incredibly polished, and likely the closest thing we’ll ever get to a Vice City remake.
1. Vice Cry 1.8
For those adamant about the original Vice City engine, we have to go back to where it all began.
Vice Cry 1.8 is the last release of the project that would go on to become Vice Cry: Remastered(the mod mentioned above).
Instead of bringing Vice City to a newer engine, this mod works with the original game.
It improves textures and other aspects massively to achieve a fantastic look that keeps the old-timey graphical charm without some of its most jarring elements.
It looks even better when coupled with something like the Vice City ENB Series, and I can’t recommend it enough for anyone looking to re-live Tommy Vercetti’s classic adventure.
Really if you’re going to start modding Vice City and you aren’t sure what to try, start with Vice Cry and move out from there.Browse:Grand Theft AutoVideo Games
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