Anyone who attempted to 100-percent Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas a dozen years ago remembers “Supply Lines,” the goddamn impossible side mission that C.J. performs for hobby-shop nerd Zero. If you hated it, and hated Zero, well, know that Zero’s voice is right there with you.
David Cross, at the 10:02 mark of this interview, rips his performance and the mission’s design. “It’s the most annoying voice you could imagine, accompanying that,” he says.
“I stopped, I tried to cheat, I could not listen to myself, it was so annoying,” Cross says. “So annoying. I hated it. And I couldn’t fucking do it. The RC [plane] thing? … It’s impossible.”
In Supply Lines, the player controls an RC biplane that’s still equipped with enough firepower to blow up delivery vans. Zero dispatches C.J. to gun down the fleet of Zero’s nerd-rival, Berkley (who is never seen, nor does he speak).
The mission was made difficult by the impossible nature of the touchy RC controls, particularly for twin-analog users. The controls were basically backward to a standard vehicle’s, with the throttle on a stick and turning on buttons. The player had to track down a series of couriers and eliminate them and the dirt bike rider was the absolute worst. This six-year-old walkthrough video still gets raging comments from players who either can’t beat it or still resent what it took to beat it.
Supply Lines was harder than Death Row, a core story mission in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City that caused me to rage to the point my landlady called the police on me. (True story. Then I figured out I should just get in the damn garbage truck and drive Vic to the hospital in that.) But at least that mission didn’t feature Cross’ grating voice barking orders.
Rockstar Games had a stretch last decade where it simply couldn’t release something without some gratuitous unnecessary control variation plopped in. They fixed the stupid free-look camera from Vice City and made San Andreas a true third-person adventure, but they still dumped in this pretzel-fingered pain-in-the-ass obligation.