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GTA 4 glitches

Updated on December 31, 2011
Oh god, how did I get here?  I'm not good at games!  Liberty City is surprisingly "3D model" looking when viewed from below.
Oh god, how did I get here? I'm not good at games! Liberty City is surprisingly "3D model" looking when viewed from below.

Grand Theft Auto 4 is a game of great magnitude and size. Every aspect of the story helps to immerse the gamer into the living, breating world that is Liberty City. It is very possible to play the game five times over, and still discover something new in the world on your sixth playthrough.

If there's one thing I've learned as a gamer, it's that the larger and more complex a game is, the more likely you are to come across glitches and easter eggs (hidden jokes or messages, big and small).  It could be argued that there are probably hundreds, if not thousands of small glitches in a game as big as Grand Theft Auto, however most of them are to minor and inconsequential to warrant mentioning.  This guide will give you everything you need to experience the best glitches and discover the best easter eggs hidden within Libery City.

Easter Eggs - Stuff The Developer's Did For Fun

Grand Theft Auto 4 has a bunch of easter eggs, some of which are larger and more grand than others.  Here's some of GTA's best.

Hillary Clinton!?
Hillary Clinton!?
Such a flattering picture!
Such a flattering picture!

The Statue of Happiness is Familiar...

Why is the statue of happiness familiar? That's a face we've all seen before - That's Hillary Clinton! I've even included the image that they used for reference when modeling the statue's face, a most unflattering picture if there ever was one. Notice anything else about the statue of happiness?

  • That's no torch! The statue of happiness is holding the true beacon of the United States of America - A coffee cup! Doesn't get much more tongue and cheek than this!
  • At the base of the statue, you'll find a hidden sweater that the player can wear... As with most clothes, Niko Belic looks terrible in it. But at least he'll stay warm.

The biggest easter egg in the game?

Yep, that's right. The statue of happiness is alive! With some careful maneuvering with a helicopter and a perfectly timed bailout, you can drop Niko onto a platforn that is otherwise inaccessible. One of the doors isn't solid, you pass through it, giving you access to a ladder that takes you to the beating heart of Liberty City!  The door has a sign that indicates "no hidden content this way".

What we know about the beating heart is that it's held in place by chains, almost giving it the appearance of being held prisoner... Kind of makes that Hillary Clinton face on the statue of happiness kind of creepy, doesn't it? Like it's stuck in place, unable to move... gah!

Who knows what the beating heart is a reference to, if anything at all. Maybe it's just there because it can be. Or maybe there's some kind of joke among the developers that lead to its inclusion into the game. Either way, it's beating, and invulnerable.

Brucie's Helicopter is Deadly.

Your dear old friend Brucie Kibbutz has a helicopter, that you can use when going on man-dates with him. Inside of Brucie's helicopter is a sign that can only be seen in first person mode, which reads, "This helicopter might crash but we really don't care if it does, refer to flight manual for help". This may not necessarily be an easter egg, but rather just an example of the developer's sense of humor.

The mysterious (and messy) murder scene

When you aquire your second house (in Bohan, the one with the crazy man across the street who never stops shouting), you can enter the door next to the old guy. Up the stairs, you'll come across a "significant" quantity of blood, and a free pistol. Clearly, someone was the unfortinute victim of Liberty City's crime wave.

Ninja's are afoot!

The internet cafe's in Libery City (aptly named "tw@", or "twat") all feature a malfunctioning printer behind the desk.  Get a bit closer (you'll need a sniper rifle on full zoom to read this), and you'll see the line "ERROR Unleash ninja guru lol". 

Packie's Brain!
Packie's Brain!

Get inside Packie's head.

Packie, your violent, drunken buddy who you can go on man-dates with, isn't the brighest star in the universe.  He's not the sharpest knife in the drawer.  He's not.. Well you get the idea.  Rotating the camera around carefully to place it inside of Packie's head will give you an idea of why Packie such a brute.  He's brain is tiny!  And shaped like a box, interestingly enough.

Every street has a name, some more interesting than others

While cruising around in Liberty City, you'll notice that every single street has a unique name. Many of the street names are references to certain subjects. Here's some of the better names, and what they're referencing.

  • Several streets are named after foods (Onion, Chive, Asparagus)
  • Streets are named after tools (Jackhammer, TInderbox)

There's plenty of streets that aren't mentioned here. Named after prison's, famous last names, and more. See how many you can find. Keep in mind that some of them are quite obscure references.

Hot Coffee makes a comeback!

Grand Theft Auto: San Andrea's featured a sex mini-game that was removed from the gameplay, but not deleted from the games files.  As a result, it was possible to re-enable the disabled sex scenes and accompanying mini game by altering the games code somewhat.  When the media got hold of this, they ran with it and basically turned what was a small, crude-but-all-in-good-humor mini-game that wasn't even in the game in the first place, and made it international news.  Heads rolled, people were sued, games were pulled from shelves. 

Fortinutely, it all blew over once the hysteria and hype surrounding it died out, much like it always does with media-hyped stories.  GTA 4 features several references to the "hot coffee" scandal, the most obvious being signs within the game world that advertise a "Hot coffee shop".  One could argue that this is the developers way of thumbing their noses at all the busy bodies who knee-jerked their way to the front page of the newspaper during the Hot Coffee scandal.

Don't drink the Piwasser!
Don't drink the Piwasser!
The resemblence is uncanny!
The resemblence is uncanny!

Pißwasser beer

As with any billboard advertisement in a GTA game, you can expect crude and edgy humor. The German produced beer in GTA 4, Pißwasser, features a woman fellating the beer bottle. Certainly something that makes you do a double take the first time you see it. This image could be a reference to another famous photo that's made the rounds on the internet, it's below, so compare them to see the resemblence!

There's another Pißwasser billboard in the game, however it might be considered a bit too risque for this website, so I'll leave it out. Suffice to say, it gives you an idea of why the beer is called, "Pißwasser".

Grand Theft Auto 4 Glitches

And now we get to some glitches, sorry it took so long!  I'm only going to cover the big glitches that are actually fun to do and easy to reproduce.  Glitches that take hours of careful timing to accomplish just aren't worth the time.  Some of these glitches can entertain you for hours, particularly when playing online with friends. 

The greatest glitch in Grand Theft Auto 4 - The swingset glitch!
The greatest glitch in Grand Theft Auto 4 - The swingset glitch!
The located of the deadly swingset.
The located of the deadly swingset.

The swingset glitch

There is a glitch in GTA 4 that is so fun to do, that it's likely that the games patches never addressed the issue, because too many people enjoy it. The swingset glitch is a glitch that can be attributed to GTA 4's complex physics system. Simply put, you drive a vehicle into the swingset, and get launched. Not a few feet, not one hundred feet. With the right technique and a bit of luck, you can wind up more than a quarter mile away, sailing through the air in a car that is damaged to the point of being unrecognisable.

I've included a map that shows where the swingset is.  Below are a few videos of the famed swingset, and it's extreme car launching abilities.  I've also added some pictures of severely destroyed cars, destruction only possible thanks to the deadly swingset.

Play around with the swingset glitch while online

A Comet GT folds like a tin can
A Comet GT folds like a tin can
I have no idea what car this used to be.
I have no idea what car this used to be.

the damage caused to vehicles by the swingset of doom is only able to be recreated using the swingset. No regular crash will damage the cars as much as the swingset's brutal force. One comical aspect about the cars damaged by the swingset is that they tend to become so deformed that various parts of the player will protrude through the car. Niko's head sticking through the solid roof, while he remains seemingly unfazed, can be quite comical.

If you're playing online, set health to max, and gather some people at the swingset. A player on foot can jump up and hang on the swingset by their hands, as another player bumps into the swings with a car. This will allow the player dangling on the swingset to launch through the air, sometimes covering amazing distances.

Enter the Bank of Liberty after the robbery

The bank robbery mission in GTA 4 is one of the most exciting, bringing up memories of great Heist movies like Heat. As with most interiors in GTA 4, the area becomes inaccesible after you finish the mission, preventing you from ever entering the location again.

The Bank of Libery city can be re-entered, assuming you use the right vehicle (a Sanchez motorcycle), and the right positioning/timing. Once you've entered the building, you'll be unable to leave until you reload or die. Interestingly enough, the entire interior of the bank remains populated by tellers and customers, as well as the cash in the vault.

Below is a video that demonstrates the techniques required to enter the Bank of Liberty, passing through the locked doors. 

Fall below the world in the Airport

The Libery City airport is a busy place, with a jet that never actually takes off (it merely does laps around the runway and entry ways).  Because the afformentioned jet never actually takes off, we can take advantage of it's engines, which sit low to the ground.  Using a tall vehicle, drive up to one of the engines as the plane is making a turn.  The car will start bucking like crazy, eventually either teleporting you to safety nearby, or forcing you to fall through the ground, into the great abyss. 

The video below demonstrates how to properly execute this glitch, and also shows what happens when the player is suddenly teleported back to safety above ground, seemingly unaware that he just fell into the blue hell.

Sorry guys, video link appears to have stopped working and I can't find another similar video, you'll just have to take my word for it.

In closing...

We've had a lot of fun here today.  I hope you've learned something worthwhile about GTA 4 and everything it has to offer, both intentionally and unintentionally.  Hopefully you've been able to find the swingset of doom, and some of the easter eggs I mentioned above. 

Have fun!


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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      If you don't feel like flying and having to come all the way back... you can always stand in a certain position and cheat spawn a car directly at the swing set and it will freak out and fly away... you can do that multiple times forever... do it online and watch people freak out that cars are flying everywhere... lol

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      some people said that the reason why the swing set glitch is still in other gta 4 subsequents is because every aspect of the game is related to other aspects so removing the glitch may mess up the game like a rubiks cube, you try to fix one part the other parts will be ruined. i'm not really sure. ask rockstar.

    • profile image


      5 years ago


    • profile image


      6 years ago

      So cool

    • profile image


      6 years ago




    • profile image


      6 years ago

      do swingset glitch with a motorcycle, its *@&%ing awesome

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I tried the swingset of doom and it launched me out of the front window and through my stallion across the island and disapeared

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I should try the swingset glitch. i got sumthing funny go to the top of a skyscraper, summon a car(car cheat, any will work), AND DRIVE OFF!!!!! VROOM VROOM BOOM!!!!!

    • crystolite profile image


      7 years ago from Houston TX

      Informative article that i really learn t a lot from,thanks for writing.

    • profile image

      Billy Bob Baker 

      7 years ago


    • profile image

      Billy Bob Baker 

      7 years ago

      Have you seen my cigarettes, im hungry. not to mention where are my drugs, i feel like having fun. once more i screwed all your mums

    • profile image


      7 years ago


    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I need some 360 cheats and I also need a jtag.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Speaking of the deadly swing set, if you're holding a molotov cocktail, you wont fly out of the car in the process! :)

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      thaks i have raed every thing this will help me out ya i might caome back reading it agan if i forget some of it i,m about to do the swng set glitch that glitch looks soo funny and fun at the sam time ya the hillry cliton thing is funny and carpy :)


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