Trevor Holland’s ‘This is Your Game’ Niko Bellic

Trevor Holland’s ‘This is Your Game’ Niko Bellic

In this, the second instalment of This is Your Game, I’ll be discussing the gaming career of one Mr Niko Bellic, star of Grand Theft Auto IV.

Any fan of the work of Rockstar Games will know the extent of their talents, particularly in the fields of character development, story-telling and satirical humour. However, these all reached a new peak with the release of GTA IV. For the first time, players were introduced to a truly troubled protagonist; one with a dark past and a genuine reason for his actions, beside the pursuit of fame and fortune. Players made an emotional investment in Niko and felt duty-bound to help him achieve his goals. We sympathised with his struggles and felt his frustration, his anger and regret. We followed him through the campaign every step of the way and were forced to make decisions that would directly affect the outcome of his story.

Niko Bellic is a complicated man. He’s very intelligent, witty an cynical. He’s measured and business-like in his approach. He’s damaged by his past. He’s funny. He’s sensitive. Above all, however, he’s as tough as all hell, with some mad skills. For these reasons, Niko Bellic is being presented with a This is Your Game prize marking his place as one of the greatest video game characters of all time.

I recently travelled to the sprawling metropolis of Liberty City, to meet the man himself. From Francis International Airport, I caught one of Liberty City’s famous yellow cabs to the corner of Albany Avenue and Pyrite Street, in Middle Park East, to Niko’s Algonquin loft apartment. I pressed Niko’s buzzer and awaited his answer. He answered. I told him who I was and asked if I could come in. He said no and asked me to leave. He obviously misheard me that time and the next three times. On the fourth attempt, he finally came down to the lobby to meet me. However, he didn’t come alone. He brought his AK-47 with him and proceeded to point it in my face, telling me that if I didn’t leave, he would redecorate the lobby of his apartment building with my brain matter. I gingerly explained the full purpose of my visit, which was enough for Niko to lower his weapon, sigh, apologise and invite me in for a cup of tea and a biscuit.


Niko, thanks for inviting me in. Are we cool?

Yes, we are cool. I thought you were one of those fucking Jehovah’s Witnesses. You came very close to having your head removed. Sorry.

That’s OK. That’s not the only thing I came very close to.

What do you mean?

I also came very close to voiding my bowel.

I’m glad you managed to…..contain yourself.

So, how does it feel to be presented with a This is your Game prize?

Fantastic. I feel my life is now complete and all my hardships have been worth it.



Erm, OK. Well, do you mind talking to me about some of your experiences?


Great. So, where are you originally from?

Eastern Europe.


This has not been specified.

You don’t know where you’re from?

No one does.

Right…..What was life like for you before you came to Liberty City?

Oh, it was wonderful. My father was an abusive alcoholic, the majority of my village was destroyed in the war and most of the people I ever knew and loved were killed. My Aunt was raped and murdered. I joined the army as a teenager and both witnessed and committed horrible acts. I was betrayed and almost killed. My only true talent became murder and I got caught up in a life of crime that nearly destroyed me. I became obsessed with vengeance and was blinded by rage. My anger enveloped me to such an extent that, for a while, there was nothing beneath it but emptiness. You know, pretty standard, really.

I…..see…….Erm, so why did you choose Liberty City?

My cousin had already lived here for a few years and had written me all kinds of wild letters about the life he was living here. He spoke of parties, women and sports cars. It was all bullshit.

Yes. Tell me about your relationship with Roman.

I love Roman. However, he is very hard work. He gambles, he gets himself in debt, he lies, he cheats, he puts himself in ridiculous situations and has routinely put both his life and mine in danger.

Have you been bowling with him lately?

OMG. That fucking guy. What is his obsession with fucking bowling? I’d rather be Brucie’s gym buddy than go fucking bowling ever again.

Haha, yes, Brucie. Are you still in touch with him?

We email each other from time to time. I don’t see him much now. Ironically, he now works as a lifestyle coach. He’s also a spokesman for Bullshark Testosterone, so I’m sure his balls are weirder than ever.

Do you speak to anyone else from those days?

Well, Packie left for Los Santos and I haven’t heard from him since. I speak to Jacob occasionally and we sometimes hang out but he still smokes a lot and I can still barely understand anything he says. Dwayne still feels sorry for himself and my patience for his sob stories ran out long ago.

So, do you have a job now?

A job? No. I made enough money to be comfortable for a few years. I just want to spend time with my family and try to enjoy life.

Your time in Liberty City has been tough at times, hasn’t it?

It took a long time to free myself from the business of death and crime. I killed a lot of people and a lot of people tried to kill me. People I cared about lost their lives because of me.

Do you think the people you killed deserved to die?

Everyone deserves to die. It matters little. I did what I did to survive. Would you like a biscuit?

What do you have?

I have Ginger Nuts.

Me too. What biscuits do you have?

What do you mean?

It was a joke.

I see.

…………Yes, a some ginger nuts would be lovely.

If you’d pressed my buzzer one more time, those would not have been the only ginger nuts I’d have given you on a plate.


See? THAT is a joke.

………Oh. Ha….Ha…..So, is there a woman in your life at the moment?

There are some that I like to see, but American women are very strange.

Like Kiki Jenkins?

Kiki fucking Jenkins. She was a lunatic.


I haven’t heard from her in years. I think she’s dead.

Why do you think that?

Because I shot her in the face.

I see.

Not really.

Right. Do you every worry about people from the past coming back to find you?

Who? Everyone who has ever wanted me dead is now dead themselves. There’s no one left. Things have been very quiet.

Finally, what’s your strangest experience in Liberty City?

Liberty City is a strange experience. This place is ridiculous. One very strange thing is that I once lost control of my car and ended up in a children’s playground. I reversed near a swing set and somehow ended up being propelled hundreds of feet into the air.

That’s weird. Anyway, Niko Bellic, This is Your Game.

Thank you. I will never forget this day.




Stay tuned for the next edition of This is Your Game, coming next week. I’ll be travelling to Southern California to meet three men in Los Santos, who’ve made quite the stir in recent months.

Who would you like to see featured in a future edition? Send me a tweet @MrTrevorHolland.

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