Grand Theft Auto 4’s main character Niko Bellic has to make a lot of tough decisions during his adventures in Liberty City. Developer Rockstar includes moments like choosing death for Dwayne or Playboy X to highlight the harsh realities of living a life of crime, and how these decisions weigh on Niko throughout the story. Niko gets presented with another moment like this later in the game, being asked to choose between two brothers: Derrick and Francis McReary.
Both Derrick and Francis were raised in an Irish Catholic home prior to the events of GTA 4, with each brother choosing different paths in life. Derrick found himself in trouble with the law and moved to Ireland in the late-1980s, getting involved with the IRA and eventually being arrested in the United States after committing a number of violent robberies with friends from Ireland. The eldest McReary brother was set free after snitching on his two partners, allowing him to return to Ireland to continue his criminal activities. Derrick returns to Liberty City in GTA 4, where he meets main protagonist Niko during a bank heist and later recruits him for other jobs.
Francis McReary took a different path than his brother, believing himself a better person and pursuing a career in law enforcement. He serves as the Deputy Police Commissioner of Liberty City during Grand Theft Auto 4, but takes an alternate approach to cleaning up the city by focusing on the killing of petty criminals and drug dealers without getting the legal system involved. This crooked nature translates into his relationship with Niko, blackmailing him into completing jobs in exchange for ignoring his other criminal endeavors.
Niko’s fateful decision in Grand Theft Auto 4 takes place during the mission “Blood Brothers,” which starts with Niko meeting Francis at a club to talk. Francis explains that he wants Derrick dead to keep Liberty City safe, with the actual reason being Francis’ desire to prevent Derrick from leaking incriminating evidence against Francis to the media that would destroy his career in the police force. Francis crafts a plan to meet Derrick at a park, which would give Niko a chance to take him out. Things become more complicated for Niko when Derrick calls him later, voicing his concerns that Francis wants him dead and urging Niko to kill Francis in the park instead.
When the day of the park meeting arrives, Niko climbs onto a nearby roof at Francis’s request and retrieves his sniper rifle, which players will use to assassinate either brother. If players choose to take out Derrick, calling Francis while on the roof will prompt him to increase the amount of money Niko will receive from $10,000 to $20,000. After completing the hit, Niko will contact Francis and blackmail him with the information that Derrick was going to take to the media. This prompts the surviving brother to allow Niko to remove wanted levels that are up to three stars for the remainder of Grand Theft Auto 4’s story.
Choosing to kill Francis only has one positive benefit – raising the friendship level between Niko and Packie, a brother of Francis and Derrick. Raising this friendship level allows Niko to request phone bombs from Packie, which he can place under cars and detonated using Niko’s cell phone. The choice to take out Derrick seems to have more gameplay-focused benefits for Niko, providing him with money and the ability to lower wanted levels to aid in his criminal activities in Grand Theft Auto 4.