5) São Paulo, Brazil
(Max Payne 3)
São Paulo, Brazil is the largest city in South America and one of the largest in the world. With a population nearly 20 million and an area over 6,000 square miles, São Paulo is crowded, noisy and chaotic – all of which makes for an excellent video game setting which is why it was featured in such video game titles as Shadowrun, Max Payne 3, and the Zeebo racing series. The developpers of Max Payne 3 even visited the dangerous Favelas of São Paulo to get design inspiration.
4) Moscow, Russia
(Red Alert 3)
Russia’s capital and largest city, Moscow is also the country’s economic, cultural, and political center. Named for the river that runs through it, Moscow is most famous for, or perhaps most infamous for, it’s turbulent and violent past. Nearly as well known for its wide-array of classical and contemporary architectural styles, Moscow makes an ideal video game setting for all of the above reasons and has been visited in titles such as Red Alert, Ace Combat, and Metro 2033.
3) Paris, France
(Assassin’s Creed Unity)
Paris, France is known as the most romantic city in the entire world and the Mecca for fashion and art. Home city to artists, writers, sculptors, and creative of all types, Paris is awash in elegance and style and is home to many of the worlds most beloved cultural symbols such as the Mona Lisa and the Eiffel Tower leaving little doubt why video games love the city such as Assassin’s Creed Unity, Hitman: Blood Money, Battlefield 3 and 4, and the Broken Sword series.
2) London, England
(Grand Turismo 5)
London has been a leading global metropolis for centuries and is one of the world’s greatest financial centers along with New York. One of the major birth cities of the industrial revolution and modern scientific age, London is full of a mix of cultural and architectural styles across several periods from the bold and formidable Gothic Revival to the smooth and shiny Art Deco. The Royal Observatory at Greenwich is also located here, making London the location of 0° longitude on all world maps and the base point for the standardization of Universal Time (UT). London’s cultural and historical significance and influence can be felt across the globe which is why many video games are situated here such as Uncharted 3, The Getaway, Grand Turismo 5 and Legendary.
1) New York City, USA
(Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3)
Arguably the most famous city in the world, New York City is the largest city in America by population and 24th worldwide but second to none as the world’s greatest financial capital with the largest stock exchange. Over 18 million people call New York’s 5,400 square mile area home. Iconic landmarks like the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, and the Empire State Building are instantly recognizable the world over, making this metropolis the location of or inspiration for countless TV shows, films, and songs and of course video games such as Metal Gear Solid 2, Modern Warfare 3, Mafia 2, and Deus Ex have followed suit.
Submitted by Craig Bickford