Grandest: GTA V Is Bigger Than GTA IV

By Adam Smith on November 9th, 2012 at 12:00 pm.

This man is not stealing a car.

Remember the quote from the guy at the game company who said that the sequel to a commercially successful title would be “smaller, probably not as appealing to a mass audience and much more low-key”? Of course not – sequels are ‘bigger’ and ‘better’. Ask anyone working on a AAA franchise what their role is and whatever the specifics, you’ll quickly find that they work in either the ‘enlargement’ or ‘improvement’ department. This is as true at Rockstar as anywhere else, so it’s no surprise that Game Informer’s reveal of GTA V details harps on about size. The issue itself is even Game Informer’s most massive sequel – “our biggest cover story yet!” – but what does it actually tell us?

It doesn’t tell us a PC release date, or even confirm that a PC version is or will be in the works. This means the best case scenario is probably a minimum six month wait, but let’s hope the eventual port won’t chew up the innards of the average computer, or pull a Red Dead Redemption and forget to exist. You could just stop reading now and wait until we know more about the PC version, but if you do want to read on, it’s all down there rather than being spread across an entire week.

The information that’s risen to the top of the revelation brew is based around the inclusion of three playable characters and a massive world. Let’s do the world first. If you haven’t already seen the following quote then you may not have been on the internet at all since yesterday afternoon.

“bigger than RDR, San Andreas and GTA4 combined”

Rockstar aren’t interested in the single city block, they’re interested in the city itself and they want to do justice to the real life Los Angeles. That’s the ‘big’ then. A city and its surroundings, all offered up in that sandbox style. It’ll need variety to be compelling, rather than simply being more ill-defined city blocks, and Dan Houser offers this:

“The contrast between desert/rural Southern California, inland from LA and just a bit north, compared to LA, gives you a great microcosm of red state/blue state theme – different vibes culturally as much as geographically.”

Those are words that make GTA V sound like it might be an interesting game. I’m also excited by the inclusion of ‘dynamic events’, as featured in Red Dead Redemption. Even though they did become repetitive – so many people tried to steal my horse using the same trick – the world felt more interesting because of them, and they made me feel less like an audience member and more like a participant.

The ocean floor will be detailed and explorable, which seems completely pointless because GTA people hate swimming. You’re as likely to see potato-faced protagonist Niko Bellic wandering around in the silt and the sand looking for sunken treasure as you are to meet a sentient sausage roll who delivers a strong argument for mandatory morning testicle-punches. All this underwater stuff sounds like it’ll be used in one mission and then never mentioned again. Except in bullet point lists of features that pad out the world. Yes, I’m being cynical about the desirability of underwater gameplay in Grand Theft Auto. I think that’s sensible.

Also there are three playable characters. While the ability to swap character at any time during regular (non-mission) play is certainly new, GTA IV had three playable characters as well, even if two of them were introduced in expansions. The idea fits with the ‘different vibes’ that Houser is talking about and should allow Rockstar to tell more of their rise-and-fall crime stories.

Indeed, missions sound more scripted than ever, with all three characters sometimes involved. Switching is only possible at predetermined points during these sequences, many of which will apparently be heists or heist-related, and examples given include one character covering a building, sniping at enemies, while another infiltrates. The player can choose who to control and occasionally a set piece will allow him/her to shift from one to another.

As for their personalities and positions in life, one is a retired bankrobber who made a fortune by ratting out his gang to the FBI. He has a family that he’s in conflict with and he’s running out of cash. He is called Michael. Trevor used to do jobs with Michael and he’s a violent, unhinged drug addict and former military pilot. There will be a mission in which Trevor pilots a fighter plane and he will swear a lot. And then there’s Franklin, the only one who isn’t in his forties yet. He’s a fraudulent car dealer and repo man. Or something. He will almost certainly get in over his head at some point.

There’s loads more information but, blimey, I’ve written far too much already and it’s not as if everyone else hasn’t already written this. That’s why I mentioned sentient sausage rolls – it’s all I can really bring to the story. For what it’s worth, I’m one of the people who enjoyed GTA IV, even the vehicle physics, which Rockstar are now saying were too ‘boat-like’ and will be better this time around. I’m not convinced by the character switching idea – at its best, I think GTA is freedom with focus waiting in the wings. The multi-threaded narrative, with the player picking the edits and switches, could damage that focus.

Also, for all the innuendo and silliness that often runs through their worlds, Rockstar’s games do have interesting characters, or at the very least attempts to create interesting characters and that’s rare enough that it deserves notice. I think they get it right fairly often and even though – perhaps especially because – crime-ridden LA might be a ‘man’s world’, it would have been good to see even one of the three centre stage spots going to a female character. I don’t find the lack of a female protagonist surprising or exclusionary, but I do think it could be an opportunity missed. I’d like to see these worlds through different eyes, rather than crazy criminal, disaffected criminal and up and coming criminal. And, as I said in the last paragraph, that’s coming from someone who enjoyed spending time with Niko.

Importantly, there is a button for flipping people off. In Red Dead Redemption, you could tip your hat and greet people. I’d quite like to be that person again.

GTA V is out on PC when the youngest of us have grown old and the oldest have passed from memory into myth.

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161 Comments »

  1. El_MUERkO says:

    “GTA V is out on PC when the youngest of us have grown old and the oldest have passed from memory into myth.”

    which is a great pity, GTA IV multiplayer messing on the PC is a lot of fun, ho-hum plenty of other games in the game-sea

  2. InternetBatman says:

    We don’t even know if it’s coming to the PC for sure. It’s not listed here:

    http://www.rockstargames.com/newswire/article/45951/grand-theft-auto-v-is-coming-spring-2013.html

    And later on, when you browse rockstar’s site, this is classified under ps3 and x-box games, but not PC. So this is pretty much console news.

    • Grey Ganado says:

      One can still hope.

    • Dana says:

      PC ports always come months after consoles.

      • InternetBatman says:

        Except for RDR, their last game.

        • x1501 says:

          Team Bondi’s L.A. Noire and internally developed Max Payne 3 are Rockstar’s latest published games. Both had PC releases.

        • cqdemal says:

          Rockstar North’s last game is Max Payne 3, which has a glorious PC version but is a disappointingly dull game.

        • ulix says:

          RDR is a Rockstar San Diego Game. The four games that Rockstar San Dieogo’s made before RDR also didn’t come to PC, including the predecessor (Red Dead Revolver).

          All GTA games came to PC. Most of the newer one’s (including GTA IV) weren’t even announced for PC when they came to consoles. They still came to PC at some point, just like every other Rockstar North game in living memory.

          So yes, this will definitely come to PC.

        • MacTheGeek says:

          “Never” is just another way of saying “an infinitely large number of months”.

      • zeroskill says:

        Or do they? *dramatic voice*

  3. GameStunts says:

    You know, even if this does the usual RockStar gig of taking 6 – 12 months to come to PC, I bought GTA IV and the DLC on Xbox360, and then on PC, and I’ll still do the same.

    Despite their attitude towards PC, I think Rockstar make the franchise that I have played and loved most in my life.

    • HadToLogin says:

      Heh, I guess “as long as they make good games, they can crap on us as much as they want” works here.

      See Ubisoft, that’s how you own people. Create good games, and then rubbish DRM…

  4. Bob says:

    I think it looks interesting, but I’ll wait for confirmation that it’s more entertaining than IV before I’ll consider a purchase.

    • x1501 says:

      I’m not sure why so many people view GTA IV so negatively. For me, it was the most entertaining game in the entire franchise.

      • B1A4 says:

        IV was little bit grindy in social way. Also too big and too long. But not bad.

        My favourites are GTA 2 (Best intro and missions) and Vice City

      • misterT0AST says:

        I didn’t like it one bit.
        After messing around for a while I grew tired of not having more weapons and stuff available, so I started doing story missions.
        I really really didn’t like taking people from point A to point B without touching anyone or anything.
        It took me several tries to complete the “bowling” mission because I kept getting bored and running over pedestrians, or just touched a car by mistake and was machine gunned to death by the police.

        In GTA4 you can do anything you want, but actually you get rewarded for doing exactly what IT wants.

        It’s a huge sandbox with a linear narrow railway called “story” that you have to strictly follow to get anywhere.

      • Gnoupi says:

        I liked the GTA series before GTA 4 (or San andreas, for that matter, but it was more about the general ambiance, I had difficulties with the setting. Vice City was much more talking to me).

        It was a fun sandbox, with a silly story in the middle.

        With GTA 4, suddenly, it was some big story, taking itself very seriously, with “characterful people”. And it added a lot of gameplay chores, for me, like the insane need to drive (and pay the toll bridge) to the mission, every single time I had to restart the mission. Add to this a way to handle gunfights which was made for consoles, and in which playing like a PC gamer (not using the cover button, going for the headshot) was actually less effective. I actually gave up at one of such cover gunfight mission,; because I couldn’t figure out what was expected of me. Because I couldn’t possibly decide who to shoot, in which order, no. I had to enter cover, shoot the guy in frot, then some event would force to switch cover, and I would have to guess again what the game was expecting of me, because trying to shoot a guy I wasn’t supposed to was getting me killed.

        Driving was also dreadful to me, the opposite of fun, adding to the “commuting” effect of the missions.

        So really, I was more than happy to discover the Saints Row series with SR3, at this point. A fun place to be, no restrictions almost, and gunfights which play closer to what I would expect, with headshots, and deciding myself how to deal with cover. And driving is fun, recalling the mindless joy from the earlier gta episodes.

        • DrGonzo says:

          The story doesn’t take itself very seriously. You have a pretty messed up idea of a plot if you think it did anyhow.

        • x1501 says:

          I loved Saints Row 3 too (the co-op was absolutely awesome; SP-only GTA is really missing out on this), but in spite of the fart jokes, sex dolls, toilet outfits, and purple dildos, not because of them. I actually like the fact that GTA IV tried to raise the bar and make itself appealing to more mature gamers. It was still adolescent in more ways than one, but at least several of its aspects, especially like its clever use of satire for social and political commentary (http://youtu.be/0SDOW9cw1qQ?t=2m), finally made me feel like I was playing a game a bit more appropriate for my 18+ age.

          Of course, the core gameplay wasn’t that bad either. The missions were fun; the story, characters, radio, and dialogues were genuinely entertaining; the city felt amazingly alive (I actually found the commuting rather immersive); and while the social elements really weren’t that great, they were still short, optional, and occasionally funny. I didn’t mind them that much.

      • mike2R says:

        I didn’t mind the gameplay as such. Driving, shooting, killing was fine. I could deal with the port.

        What I didn’t like was a) the social stuff – it just bored me, but mainly b) it just felt like it didn’t work suspension of disbelief wise. They seems to both want to tell a tight story about a conflicted Niko, AND have the normal GTA open-world run-over-old-grannies-em-up. Just didn’t work for me.

        The story could have worked if you’d had more believable consequences for your actions. The standard GTAness could have worked with a different story and main character.

        I hope for GTA V they choose one or the other approach. I’d actually be very interested if they went the story route and leave the old-school GTA to the Saints Row people. But the combination just doesn’t work for me.

      • Feferuco says:

        Unlike a lot of people, I enjoyed the fact that they had less things to do in the game. Also, the game was still filled with comedy, it wasn’t a gritty serious game. It just didn’t have military train robbery on a jetpack, and I think that’s a plus. What an insane game, starts out with a gang banger at his mother’s funeral and at some point escalates to stealing fighter jets from air carriers.

        Not that IV didn’t have that, not as much but it was still schizophrenic. That’s one of the problems, it was over the top and it wasn’t, at once trying to be two things and failing at both. The other problem was how much more scripted it was, so many times I chased car and bikes seemingly on rails, you could pop their tires and they’d still drive normally.

        Again that was a problem of being two things at once, it was an open world game, a kind of game that benefits from the unpredictable and player freedom, but it wanted carefully scripted action scenes.

      • The Tupper says:

        Edit: ignore

      • Eschatos says:

        GTA 4 was a good game, but it just took away so many awesome things that were added in San Andreas. It just felt like a massive step downward from SA in every department other than looks.

      • dglenny says:

        For me, because I went from loving SA with its three bright, diverse cities separated by interesting, explorable countryside and accessible from my own private airport and/or jetpack, to a single, brown, ground-based*, constantly-bothered-by-a-cellphone, depressing, po-faced shithole. Coupled with the inability to run it because of the Windows Event Log bug and the graphics card incompatibilities when it launched, it is absolutely the moment that AAA games died for me. I will certainly buy GTA V, because the love I have for the games prior to IV knows no bounds, but I very much doubt it will be at launch unless there’s a flyable space shuttle or something.

        Hell, I’d settle for being able to jack tractors again and drive them off cliffs while listening to country music.

        * yes, yes, helicopters come along later, I know

      • YourMessageHere says:

        For me it was:
        - New York, again. I have no interest in New York, I never have or will. It pissed me off in GTA, it pissed me off in GTA3, it pissed me off in LCS on PSP. An ugly, hostile city portrayed in the best graphics available is still ugly and hostile. Exploring isn’t fun there – particularly because…
        - Half the city is blocked off, again. This isn’t fun and serves no purpose.
        - Mission retrying still not fixed.
        - The introduction of an utterly superfluous cover mechanic in a game that has never needed one.
        - Niko Bellic was not in any way an avatar I felt comfortable with. Not sure why; possibly the lack of customisation compared to San Andreas.
        - The game lost a great deal of its sense of humour at some stage.
        - The phone as a gameplay hub, with all the ‘lets go bowling!’ and ‘Obvious Police Mole wants to go on a date with you’ unfun unentertaining but still apparently necessary bullshit that came with it. Where was the off button?
        - Performance problems (mostly fixed later, but it really rankles when a thing runs on a 360 and not on a PC).

        Edit: Since I’ve not touched it in some time, I thought I’d load it up and have a look, see if my opinion has changed. So I can add another thing to the list:

        - Securom. Particularly the fact it won’t run if I’m running Process Explorer, not unless I completely reboot, FOR REASONS.

        • x1501 says:

          “An ugly, hostile city”? You’ve never actually been to New York, I take it? It’s not that ugly.

          • YourMessageHere says:

            No, granted I haven’t been there. But absolutely every film or TV show I’ve ever seen set there made it look horrible, with the sole exception of the Guggenheim Museum.

          • x1501 says:

            Well, I don’t know what movies and TV shows you’re watching, but I’ve been there numerous times and it’s a great city. Easily one of the best ones I’ve ever been to, and arguably one of top cities on the entire planet. Full of gorgeous views, interesting architecture, and—contrary to the stereotype—very friendly people.

            What I’m saying here is that instead of forming (and publicly expressing) your opinion about it from The Warriors, Escape from New York, I Am Legend and the like, you really should just visit the place. You may actually like it.

          • YourMessageHere says:

            Well, I’m happy that you like it. However, given that it’s a good 3000 miles and several hundred pounds airfare away, has nothing I want to see or do and has an attraction I utterly fail to understand despite all the things I’ve seen and played that supposedly show the place off (GTA aside, Inside Man, Vanilla Sky, The Hours, Shaft, Die Hard 3 (and 1 and 4? I don’t recall where they happened), American Gangster, Trading Places, Live and Let Die and expy-NY Gotham in the Nolan Batman films all spring to mind after only a little thought, there’s plenty more I’m sure) it’s unlikely.

            Perhaps more to the point, Rockstar have now done it four times and it’s past time for them to stop. US culture may be just what they need to make games that flow the way they do, but US cities are horrible to drive in and just not interesting, at least to me.

          • x1501 says:

            I know exactly what you mean. I’ve been to every major European capital except London, but I’ve seen plenty of seemingly accurate British documentaries to get my impression of the city. Widespread infertility, faction wars, zombie attacks, fish, chips, cup ‘o tea, bad food, worse weather, Hugh Grant, American Werewolves, and Mary eff-ing Poppins? I don’t know Londoners put up with all this, but what a hellhole of a city it must be…

      • Arglebargle says:

        Hated the interface so much that it didn’t matter what the game did otherwise. Also, played it at the Nadir of its GFWL problems. Was a horrible pain to get going.

        Bad interface trumps all imo.

  5. Lolmasaurus says:

    Considering how ludicrously fun GTA 4 is on the pc with friends, (even if you need nasa’s computer to run it) I am saddened by this news (or lack thereof). Do they not want my money?

    • unguided says:

      Been trying to get my friends to play GTA IV multiplayer, what do you need? Just the Social Club or whatever?

  6. Lambchops says:

    I will once again sigh and proclaim that bigger isn’t always better. In my mind San Andreas was the weakest in the series and one of several reasons for this was that it was just too damn big.

    If they manage to do more to flesh out details rather than having big but bland locales then it might work, otherwise I’d be wary of buying it (particularly as I didn’t really like GTA IV all that much either).

    • yhancik says:

      I also wish they put all their energy, time and money on making a better city instead of trying to pack as many square meters as possible in their game.

      • Kelron says:

        They did that for GTA 4 and people moaned about it.

        • Thirith says:

          I’ve never yet felt with Rockstar’s worlds that they were quantity over quality, so I trust them to deliver in this respect.

        • yhancik says:

          I admittedly didn’t spend much time on GTA IV (well on The Lost and Damned to be precise). They have improved some things indeed (Euphoria is fun!), but my impression was that it was still lacking a certain persistence / feel of consequence. Still relying much on temporary instances of nameless characters that only exists to give you the impression of a living city.
          Of course there’s a technical challenge, and that’s precisely why I wish they tackled it ;)

        • DrGonzo says:

          Only fools moaned. San Andreas was definitely the weakest of the bunch. Vice City stands out for me as the city with the most personality, it may also be the smallest. But I also really enjoyed IV, especially the Jewish biker add on.

          • Thirith says:

            I liked the style of Vice City, but I found the city itself a boring place. Way too flat. My favourite location is San Fierro in San Andreas by far, especially by bike.

      • ulix says:

        Like in GTA IV? aka “The game with the best, most convincing virtual cityspace ever created”?

    • The First Door says:

      I would like to very much disagree with you there. I loved San Andreas the most out of those three because the variety of things you could do is unmatched in the series. The fact you could spend a couple of hours at an airfield getting your Pilot Wings style licence, or go and work your way up the racing leagues was fantastic and helped break up the missions really well. Admittedly some of the additions (like the dating) were a bit mince, but you could just ignore the parts you didn’t care about quite happily.

      • Sparkasaurusmex says:

        Yeah, San Andreas experimented with giving the player a lot of things to do. GTA IV removed all of that for story…

        I want gamey shit, not movie shit.

        • DrGonzo says:

          GTA IV had more variety for me, just because of the physics, and interesting city. There was nothing to do worth while in the entirety of San Andreas, it had boring grindy RPG stuff, and for all it’s ‘craziness’ and huge amount of features, there was nothing to do. By sticking numbers and xp on things they made it boring imo.

          GTA IV is the best sandbox for messing around in in the series, made even better by playing the multiplayer with cheats switched on.

          • The First Door says:

            There was much, MUCH more to do in San Andreas outside of the missions than there was in GTA IV and most of it wasn’t grinding RPG stuff at all. Unless you count racings, leaning to fly helicopters and stunt planes, off road dirt biking as boring grinding stuff.

            EDIT: That’s not to say I didn’t really enjoy GTA IV, because I did, but it felt much more story-focused to me.

      • brulleks says:

        I loved having countryside and other varied environments in SA, but conversely, I hated getting stuck in them with one burnt wreck of a car and no means of returning to civilization.

        So I just hope they find a way around that this time.

    • InternetBatman says:

      The only GTA game I liked more than San Andreas was Vice City, but that was just because Vice City had a brighter / more comical atmosphere.

      • lokimotive says:

        The best part about Vice City is that, at one point, you could get a police uniform and then enter a cutscene, still wearing the police uniform, where a character unironically told you that he trusted you because you didn’t look like a police officer.

      • DrGonzo says:

        Vice City was my fav too. This one looks to be quite bright and colourful too. It’s set in LA so I’m guessing there will be a similar vibe.

    • Naum says:

      I have almost no experience with the GTA games, but as a general point about open world titles I’d also like to see a bit more ‘quality over quantity’. With Skyrim, for example, there’s a massive difference in time between the point where you’ve fully explored the gameplay and the point where you’ve seen most of the content — and when the gameplay is not exciting any more, story and dialogues and visuals only manage to hold my attention in very rare cases. Consequently, the countless man-hours poured into the creation of vast amounts of content are mostly wasted on me, and I’d really like to see a shift towards more man-hours for mechanics. I don’t care if a game has 1000 hours worth of content when only the first 30 or so are actually interesting.

    • Nick says:

      man, driving into San Fierro for the first time is still one of my favourite gaming memories.

  7. gladius2metal says:

    they should do cities like Quito in Ecuador or La Paz in Bolivia, this would be awesome. These are “vertical” cities built right into a mountain region. Wide highways, small streets, huge buildings, abandoned buildings, slums, “rich districts” (usually sealed of by security), etc.

    • Kelron says:

      Would be interesting but I can’t imagine them ever straying from the US.

      • DrGonzo says:

        They did do GTA London all those years back.

        But they shouldn’t leave america. The series is a spoof of america, what a British guy thinks of the USA basically.

    • Zanchito says:

      This is a very good idea. I guess they want to only use US cities, but there are so many awesome places fit for a GTA game!

  8. Matt-R says:

    Can’t say the multi character thing sounds interesting to me, kind detracts from it and I know I should wait and see how it turns out but meh. Still a year or so before it comes to PC if it does anyway so guess I shall indeed be waiting to see how it turns out whether I want to or not.

  9. Keymonk says:

    A bit disappointed there’s three main characters, and not one of them is a woman. This would have been a good opportunity for some diversity without alienating the almighty white male gamer. :/

    • Lars Westergren says:

      Yeah, a real missed opportunity. They could have done something really “different vibes” with a female character trying to survive in a brutal criminal world, that would have been a story I would have been interested in.

      • Keymonk says:

        Yeah, me too. I would’ve liked it, but that sort of thing just doesn’t happen unless there’s a character creator – and it usually means the story is watered down as a result of not being able to specify a character for the developers.

      • lexoneir says:

        Your comment is slightly sexist. “A woman trying to survive in a brutal criminal world” implies that women somehow can’t be brutal criminals, or that the portrayal of a woman would automatically shy away from making her as much of a criminal as the other characters.

    • x1501 says:

      Although I think you’re crazy to ask for political correctness from the series, I agree that having a woman as one of the protagonists would be a welcome change.

      • Keymonk says:

        Ah, the matter was not political correctness, just diversity. I just think it’s tedious that by far most games focus on male protagonists.

      • Iskariot says:

        Yeah, a woman would be great, but only if she behaved like a man. Playing the girly girl would get old very soon.

    • The Random One says:

      I’m not that surprised – GTA has always been about a male’s perspective. But yes, a wasted chance, even more because their three main characters are the same guy with slightly different skin colour and beard scragliness.

      • ulix says:

        No they’re not.
        Have you read the articles?
        Sure, they’re all criminals (it’s still GTA after all). But they seem to have completely different personalities and social backgrounds.

    • Deston says:

      Exactly what I thought when I read that too. As others have pointed out above, it’s not really surprising from R* / GTA, but it is disappointing.

      I can understand why they go with male leads given the nature of the game and its targeted demographics, but it still seems odd considering they are now having 3 playable characters.

      I’m still likely to buy this though, it does look quite promising to me. I very, very rarely buy anything for my Xbox these days, but this one is likely to tempt me. The PC release is going to be a way off and there’s a fair chance it’s going to be a troubled port anyway.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Normally I’d agree, but it doesn’t seem right playing a woman in GTA. I dunno if it’d suit it.

      • Keymonk says:

        It’s not like we’d know. They’ve never done it.

      • x1501 says:

        I just don’t see why not. I played strong-willed bossy female characters in Mass Effect and Saints Row 3 (whose maniacal gang leader protagonist was anything but a saint) and loved every minute of it.

    • BAshment says:

      Gta has had quite a few strong female characters in the 3d games. The protagonist in the games are pretty much a blank slate in the series I mean in 3 the lead had no name or even dialogue.

      • X_kot says:

        I really want to agree with you, but…most of the notable female characters in the later GTA games have been either psychotic (e.g., Asuka and Catalina from III) or superficial (e.g., Mercedes and Candy from Vice City). [A good argument could be made that they were written to reflect the setting, but they're still only scenery]. San Andreas introduced a bunch of one-dimensional dating opportunities. I’ll give you Kendl from SA as a geniunely interesting character. Mind you, I haven’t played any of the offshoots, so there could be other examples.

        I think it’s clear that the Housers want to stick to what they know and write a script from a guy’s POV, and they don’t seem like the type to bring on other writers who could do a better job of casting a female protagonist. More’s the pity.

    • Jarl Hamburger says:

      I just want a lead who is a woman as well. Is that too much to ask? :(

      (Well, yes, apparently it is according to Rockstar.)

  10. WoundedBum says:

    Sounds bloody great to me.

    Rockstar open world games suffer a bit narratively due to length, so I’m hoping playing 3 different characters will allow them to keep pace for the entire game. Switching at anytime sounds great (outside of missions) and they really seem to have recognised where IV was weak.

    Will definitely be keeping an eye on this.

  11. DeanLearner says:

    Really looking forward to this! That said I hope they get rid of some of the in game socialising stuff because I found it really interu… sorry hold on.

    Hello?…. Yeah not bad thanks!….. I would but I’m in the middle of…. yeah I know it’s been ages but I really need to finish po….. I’m sorry I can’t make bowling, you’ve really got to give me more notice, I’m very bu….. don’t be like th… fine.

    Sorry what I was I saying?

    • phelix says:

      You are terrible at bowling, cousin!

      I gotta agree though. Those ‘social’ thingies in GTA IV always came at the worst of moments.

  12. charmingcharlie says:

    Hm why is RPS covering a console game ? As far as I am aware GTA 5 has not been announced for the PC.

    • GallonOfAlan says:

      Because it is a huge franchise and there is a fair chance it will eventually hit PC?

      • charmingcharlie says:

        There are plenty of “huge” console franchises they never seem to be “covered” by RPS. By your logic we can expect RPS to be covering Halo 4 soon can we ? I mean that is a “huge” franchise and previous Halo games have been on the PC etc etc.

        If there is a “fair chance” and that is debatable at this point then perhaps RPS should actually WAIT till Rockstar at least do the decent thing and announce the PC version.

        • yhancik says:

          http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/11/07/shocker-no-plans-for-pc-version-of-halo-4/

          and *sigh*, are we still and again having this “I don’t see why this blog is posting about this thing” conversation? The RPS guy have proved to be decent interesting guys, for all that I’m concerned they could be occasionally writing about the latest book they enjoyed, I’d still be reading it with great pleasure.

        • x1501 says:

          They released every other game in the series on this platform, did they not? The Halo franchise only has 2 out of 7 or so games on the PC, and both were released several years after their respective Xbox debuts. I fully understand your concern, but as far as we know, it is still a PC franchise as well.

          • charmingcharlie says:

            No they didn’t release every other game in the series on the PC. Where is Liberty City Stories and Vice City Stories on the PC ? Oh wait let me guess those are “special” so don’t count. The fact people are even arguing against a simple argument “there is no PC version so a PC news site should not be covering the game” is mind blowing.

            If there is ever an announcement that GTA 5 is coming to the PC then that is the time for RPS to “cover” GTA 5.

          • x1501 says:

            Oh, please. You have to be really obstinate, pedantic or daft to use these games in your argument. Vice City Stories and Liberty City Stories were indeed “special”, both of them being low budget handheld console spin-offs ignored by all of the major home consoles of the time and all. I was obviously talking about the relevant games in the series, and they all had corresponding PC releases.

            Next thing you know, you’ll be using Android- and iOS-only Mass Effect: Infiltrator as evidence of future Mass Effect games not being released on the consoles…

          • Sparkasaurusmex says:

            you are not very charming, Charlie.

            Just stop.

      • f1x says:

        Because Rockstar has been releasing games for PC lately, and this one might be aswell

        like L.A. Noire and Max Payne 3
        plus GTA IV was on PC aswell, good or bad

        • charmingcharlie says:

          Some Rockstar games get released on the PC and some don’t. Rockstar has a pretty spotty release history on the PC. Just because previous games have appeared on the PC does not mean future titles from Rockstar will release on the PC.

          No matter what rubbish you try to tell yourself that “Rockstar haven’t abandoned the PC and GTA 5 will come to the PC” it doesn’t change the fact that GTA 5 has NOT been announced for the PC. Now I come to RPS for PC gaming news.

          • Spakkenkhrist says:

            All prior versions of game have been released on the PC, so stop being so tediously pedantic, you might enjoy life more.

          • Prime says:

            So where would Dark Souls have fit in your strict editorial policy then, Chas, back when it wasn’t a PC game but just a petition to get one?

            The lads of RPS talk about what they love, which is games. MOSTLY that is relevant to the PC but when certain games out there need talked about on their own merits, like the afore-mentioned hack-n-slasher, they get a mention.

            Now straighten your knickers, stop moaning about things you are easily able to ignore if you want to, and let’s get back to the point of the post, eh?

          • f1x says:

            yeap, my point stands
            why should RPS ignore news about GTA V when its one of the biggest upcoming releases, its not been made official if it will release on the PC but its not official that it will not either (grammar)
            its fine, its interesting, to see and be informed of how its everything shaping up

            The moment they start doing coverages about cosplay (or boobsplay) then I will raise my fist in anger

            pd: got good memories of playing GTA 1 on my pc btw

    • Werthead says:

      No, but it will be. I actually think it will be more like the 3-4 week delay we saw with MAX PAYNE 3 rather than the six-month delay we saw with GTA4. GTA4 came out when the PC was being seen as an underdog of a platform, hence the late release, whilst today, with PC sales being rather impressive (especially online), it’s a very different story.

      In addition, looking at the screenshots I’d be surprised if some of them came from the consoles. If they have, then Rockstar really have achieved something impressive with the game engine.

    • Valkyr says:

      Why is RPS covering board games? This blog is scandalously not narrow-minded! I expect a REFUND!

      • yhancik says:

        From now on RPS should only cover board games that have been porter to IBM-PC compatible computers (no ZX Spectrum or Atari allowed).

    • The First Door says:

      Might I just suggest you stop reading the articles that don’t interest you? I suspect you’ll be significantly less angry about things then.

    • Stochastic says:

      For the reasons given above as well as the fact that the GTA franchise has a substantial impact on the videogame industry generally, which includes PC games. As all of us are depressingly aware, console games affect and inspire the development of PC games.

    • mittortz says:

      Two things you should do for your own sake:
      1) Actually read the articles on the blog you voluntarily visit. Just the first couple paragraphs would have suitable in this case

      2) See a psychologist in order to re-tune your ego until you are properly situated in reality; that is, until you realize that you are not, and never were, appointed Official Curator of this blog

      One thing you should do for my and the RPS community’s sake:
      1) Discontinue posting obnoxious comments

      **This applies to anyone else who has ever said something similar. Normally my own comments are more insightful, but this is an attitude that I regularly see now on many of the articles that I read on RPS. It has been fouling up my experience with the site and the otherwise enjoyable and intelligent community. If I am alone in this sentiment, then by all means, move along and ignore me. If not, I propose a motion to round up all the self-elected Official Curators and store them in a large tank of vinegar for safekeeping/pickling.

      • Sparkasaurusmex says:

        Basically RPS should stick your comment to the top of the page

        • mittortz says:

          haha, thanks. I will most likely be reposting that comment in reply to every similar whine that I see from now onward.

    • Oh Tyrone says:

      While I can understand the idea that a PC-gaming-only blog should only post about PC games, that isn’t really a practically viable maxim. I mean, there are several other topics that aren’t really categorizable as “PC games/gaming” but are still relevant to those who play PC games.
      For instance, advances in hardware (be it a new line of GPUs or a new console) are relevant as they at least indirectly affect PC gamers. In the case of a new console, it would mean that console developers would be programming for an entirely new platform, which clearly could have implications for the PC games market, in the same way current consoles are “holding PC gaming back”, as everyone likes to point out. Other examples could include developments in the industry (console developers folding could, for example, lead to an influx of job-seeking devs to PC studios), legislature concerning the industry and/or games themselves (i.e. banning ultra-violent games), and, indeed, games being released exclusively for consoles, as that too can affect PC gaming.
      Therefore, not reporting on these topics would be doing the readership a disservice.
      Seeing as how that is the case, I can’t see why GTA V shouldn’t be covered here, especially since there still is a definite possibility of it coming to PC:s.

      EDIT: I should perhaps say that, given the fact that several of the topics I mentioned have actually been discussed on RPS, it wouldn’t really be reasonable to assume that their actual policy is as strict as you seem to believe, so why believe it?

    • Deston says:

      1) This is RPS, they post what they want.

      2) It’s likely to be coming to the PC, and it’s a franchise that started on the PC.

      3) 80 odd comments already from an article posted in the middle of the day… I think that indicates there is interest here.

    • Totally heterosexual says:

      Wow, you are really stupid.

  13. cool4345 says:

    “Importantly, there is a button for flipping people off. In Red Dead Redemption, you could tip your hat and greet people. I’d quite like to be that person again.”

    Bring back the fart button!

    • Magnetude says:

      The accidental discovery that there was a ‘greet’ button was a game changer for me playing RDR. Instead of barrelling into town, jumping off my horse at speed and smashing my way into the saloon I found myself calmly dismounting, greeting a pipe smoking gentleman, declining an offer from a working girl on account of my lady back home and sauntering through the swing doors.

      Which is one of the reasons Jack was a bit rubbish to play as, kid had nothing good to say to no-one.

  14. Jamesworkshop says:

    i hope flipping the bird is kinect supported

  15. Prime says:

    I’ve always thought the vehicle physics in GTA IV were abysmal. All the fun of driving sucked away by vehicles that handle like supermarket trolleys, with lots more pointless cousin, friend and girlfriend mission related reasons to suffer them. Good to see an acknowledgement from Rockstar that they didn’t get it right last time around.

  16. MrPo0py says:

    Given the current popularity of the PC as a gaming platform and given that Skyrim has sold kajillions of units on PC it just beggars belief that R* aren’t even talking about a PC version alongside the console versions. I don’t know what kind of logic these guys are using to make these decisions. Sometimes Devs and Publishers come across as completely out of touch with reality and R* of late are making a real bad habit of it.

    • zeroskill says:

      I fully agree. I have been scratching my head at some of the decision making by certain companies like Rockstar or Capcom. Porting Street Fighter X Tekken to the PC which I only know few people care for, but ignoring the excellent Marvel vs Capcom 3, 3rd Strike Online Edition or Azura’s Wrath. Making use of Games for Windows live for hugely popular games like GTA 4 or Street Fighter 4 instead of taking advantage of Steam, which in turn would make those games even more popular. As you said: Skyrim is the leading example here. One does not fully understand the thinking processes of some of these console centric companies.

      And then there is Squaresoft. A company that is nothing short of total madness.

  17. SocraticIrony says:

    Ugh, not keen on jumping between three characters. I like getting attached to one and seeing them grow through my somewhat demented actions so sharing that over 3 (what will inevitably be) distinct personalities isn’t going to be attractive to me.

    And I’m with you on the finger flipping button. Really? I appreciate the target market thinks this is the height of humour but I thoroughly enjoyed being a gentlemen in Red Dead between mass murders.

  18. lordfrikk says:

    Bigger than San Andreas? Now my interest is piqued.

  19. rocketman71 says:

    And how many useless resident services will we have to install to be able to play it this time?.

  20. Nameless1 says:

    “This means the best case scenario is probably a minimum six month wait”
    Then fuck them, I’m not going to buy it. Not a single cent. I’m sick tired fo this behaviour.

  21. Revisor says:

    The larger the game, the shallower the experience.
    At least in my experience.

    Nothing beats handcrafted details.

    • ulix says:

      Then you’re in luck, because judging by GTA IV’s standard the game will be 100% hand-crafted and exquisitely detailed.

  22. Stevostin says:

    What I really wonder is rather “what will be the non mission play”. I digged GTA IV a lot but now replaying it the lack of real sandbox gameplay is really jumping to my face. There’s really a need for money to be useful, for stuff to be bought, for ways to make cash and use the city as a playground, etc. OTOH I could go without the bowling. I hope they’ll do more one man show stuff, thus, that was fun.

    I hope the writing & character are as good as in GTA IV. I think Bellic is one of the most interesting character in video games. The comparison with the latest Max Payne is making it more obvious.

    Hmm, if it’s not on PC it’s pretty crazy thus.

  23. pupsikaso says:

    I approve of RPS’s subtle mocking of other gaming sites.

  24. kyrieee says:

    A bigger world wasn’t what I was longing for while playing GTA IV

  25. WHS says:

    A bigger world is great–the sense I could just set out in any direction and keep going forever is what made San Andreas the series standout–but I’m increasingly weary of the games’ focus on criminal exploits. Rockstar goes to tremendous effort to create enormous, detailed worlds, and then makes them feel small again by building their games around shooting people in different venues. All the ridiculous cartoon gangsters and lame juvenilia don’t help.

    • jorygriffis says:

      Very acutely written, and I agree completely. My hopes are somehow a bit lower after this batch of news.

    • Brun says:

      Rockstar goes to tremendous effort to create enormous, detailed worlds, and then makes them feel small again by building their games around shooting people in different venues. All the ridiculous cartoon gangsters and lame juvenilia don’t help.

      Sigh, really? We can’t dispense with our pretentiousness even for a game that is unequivocally a satire of American Culture and the criminal underworld? Not every game has to have deep meaning to it – plenty of great games have been immature and shallow.

      I feel sorry for people who think they’re too erudite to dirty their hands with GTA’s flavor of “juvenilia.” But they’re free to keep thinking these things. I, however, will be off enjoying the game.

  26. Oh Tyrone says:

    The main question, which may or may not have been answered already:
    Will this have AA? I might be over-sensitive to it, but those jaggies in GTA IV really made me frustrated.

  27. Sparkasaurusmex says:

    I predict it’ll be Saints Row IV and GTA V where the whole perception switches about which one is a knock off and which one is the real deal. (for many of us that was Saints Row III and GTA IV).

    It seems like it’s just time for GTA to try to be a bit more hollywood or something, but this “bird flipping button” is definitely Saint’s Row flavored. Saints Row does all that kind of stuff better than GTA. GTA is good at cinematic story and great voice overs. Also I love the social/political commentary in GTA games. The gameplay? Saint’s Row 3 is a more fun game.

  28. haowan says:

    All I really want is for them to have a decent hidden package scheme with good rewards. It hasn’t been good since GTA 3, although San Andreas got close, only screwing up with the actual rewards. GTA IV’s was a joke, just as much of the game was.

  29. CrazedIvan says:

    My only gripe with the last one was the lack of Bikes, now that they are going to make a return I’m sold. Not that I needed to be, because I am such a huge fan already. I really do hope this comes out on PC.

  30. caddyB says:

    I want to play Vice City :(

  31. Ideas says:

    I always considered GTA4 to be one of the most overrated games of the last decade. The narrative elements were good sure, but mechanically the game played like crap. The cover system sucked, the aiming system was awful on consoles, the economy was pointless, the mini-games were horrible, and the missions were incredibly linear. GTA4 was an open-world game that didn’t want to be open-world at all during it’s missions. You have to take cover exactly where they wanted you to, drive the exact path they wanted you to, and drive the exact car that they wanted you to.

    I’m the sort of person who doesn’t want to play a game where you spend 90% of your time driving and shooting but both aspects feel horrible. If GTA5 doesn’t vastly improve these systems to be up to genre standards, AND drastically improve their mission design (IE make it far more open-ended), I will be skipping this game.

  32. SkittleDiddler says:

    If it takes them six months to release a shoddy port with horrible controls and a console-centric save system, I for one won’t be surprised.

  33. kilkrazy says:

    As for you guys wanting a woman star. how many times do you think you would be looking up from a guys lap.

    • Nick says:

      what the fuck?

    • Shooop says:

      Is this an unannounced test of the site’s anti-spam system?

    • derbefrier says:

      Heh.

      Think about how woman have been portrayed in past GTA games and you guys will understand where he is comming from. They usually are not the strong independent types. Usually they are hookers, or dead hookers.

      • cptgone says:

        what are you trying to imply? there are half dead hookers too? or living dead ones?

    • jorygriffis says:

      PLEASE don’t bring this kind of shit to RPS.

  34. DaftPunk says:

    This is certantly not good because game will suffer because of that,i got bored with SA at 40% of story progress…

  35. DickSocrates says:

    Not coming to PC is just the kind of thing Rockstar could do, because they’re weird company run by weird people.

    It gives me time to consider building a new super PC. I can run IV ok on my laptop (with the settings selected very carefully), but knowing R* they’ll make it so this thing won’t be able to run it, and it is sure to look glorious on a top PC.

    • Lucidity says:

      Every GTA game to date (apart from hand held spin offs) has made a PC appearance, GTA is a mega franchise and a bread winner for Rockstar, it will have a PC release eventually.

  36. chewbaccasdad says:

    I’ll wait for this on PC; It’ll come out eventually.

    The ability to mess about with game trainers and mods like I did in GTA IV is just too much fun.

  37. Cleave says:

    “Remember the quote from the guy at the game company who said that the sequel to a commercially successful title would be “smaller, probably not as appealing to a mass audience and much more low-key”?”

    Dawn of War 2?

  38. BreadBitten says:

    I’ll just leave this here…

    http://imgur.com/a/GsODP

  39. MistyMike says:

    Unless they start implementing more open mission design I’m not interested in any of this.

    • BreadBitten says:

      I think you may be in luck then, from the couple of the scans I’ve skimmed through the demo GI was shown gives the impression that switching between characters will be very much an open choice for the player to make. The 4th and 5th paragraphs of image #18 from the link goes a bit in depth about the mechanic to some degree. Also apparently the random encounters from Red Dead Redemption seems to have found their way into V in some fashion (image #16, ‘DYNAMIC MISSIONS’).

      • MistyMike says:

        Yeah, the dynamic events are good news. Hopefully the main story missions won’t amount to corridor shooters. Are those scans from a print magazine? Which one?

        • BreadBitten says:

          They’re from GameInformer’s recent eighteen page exclusive coverage.

          • MistyMike says:

            So much for people saying that ‘print press is not relevant anymore’.

  40. rockman29 says:

    I don’t think there is much risk in the character switching damaging the free form feeling of the game. I think that will add to the illusion of size actually, because we might notice how different the environment suddenly becomes switching between characters during their daily activities in their own towns.

    I am not worried about the three characters. However, I am worried about the story. The story in GTA IV was not only cheese, but it was boring as heck. I didn’t feel like I knew any of the characters at all (except for his cousin). The radio wasn’t interesting (not even close to VC or SA in terms of quality). I thought the San Andreas soundtrack was the best of all the PS2-era games, even though Vice City had the tunes everyone remembers from the 80s. In any case, I always felt bored in the GTA IV city.

    Also frankly I think GTA IV has the worst GTA world since GTA III. Both GTA III and IV feel incredibly soulless and empty and never captured the feeling of NYC. I recently visited NYC as a non-American and the feeling has not been at all captured in my opinion. Yes, the real thing is obviously going to be better, but the separation between reality and GTA just in feeling was so enormous that I can’t believe Rockstar is credited for bringing NYC to life in Liberty City with GTA IV. They didn’t come close.

    People keep saying GTA IV had so many interesting things to do besides missions and killing people. I completely disagree with those people. I felt there was almost nothing to do, all the environments were the same shades of grey and brown tinge, and of the things you could do like bowling and whatever none of those things were fun imo.

    I thought RDR was a much better game in terms of pacing, but even it is overrated, especially for the fact it isn’t on PC and everyone seems to think it’s amazing, because they haven’t played it and found it’s limits (which are essentially the same as GTA IV, only that RDR is fundamentally more interesting).

    GI asks… “Liberty City captured the spirit of NYC better than most books and films. What elements of Southern Californian culture did you want to include…”

    Just no… the self-masturbation within the industry regarding GTA is a little too much.

  41. Shralla says:

    Ugh. Fuck Rockstar. I bought an Xbox 360 to play GTAIV but I’m not stupid. Red Ded Redemption was great but if they’re not making a PC version of GTAV, they can count my sale out.

  42. rockman29 says:

    I also thought GTA IV was really boring.

    I thought GTA IV was easily the most boring GTA since the series started on 3D. San Andreas was the best to me I think.

  43. Lucidity says:

    From what I’ve seen of the promotional material so far either Rockstar have photoshopped the press release screen shots to high heaven or those ancient consoles have had a sudden surge in horsepower.

    Or they’re just running the game off of a PC? I’m in no doubt that there will be a PC version. Heck, Max Payne 3 was even a pretty solid port.

    The PC has had every iteration of the GTA franchise on it (barring hand held spin offs) so why they’d stop now is beyond me. There’s plenty of money to be made off of the PC for such a mega franchise after all.

  44. lexoneir says:

    I’m much more excited for this release now. I’m glad that they’re choosing to go in the direction of San Andreas, instead of making it small and story-based like GTA IV. I like books as much as the next guy, but sometimes I just want to play a game.

    Also, the ‘button to greet and flip people off’ was in San Andreas as well, thought it wasn’t specifically flipping off but rather ‘telling off’ in a gangster fashion.

    Finally, with regards to the comment about women in the GTA series. I agree completely that there should have been a woman. However, as I mentioned in another comment above me, your comment seems slightly sexist, maybe even highly sexist. You are actually suggesting that a woman’s perspective cannot or would never be criminal or crazy. Women are people. They might be criminals, or insane.

    • Adam Smith says:

      Fair point – the suggestion is in my wording rather than my intent. I’d be perfectly happy with a crazy criminal female character, but I’d also be interested to see other people with the spotlight on them. People on the periphery or on the other side of the law, however much that may or may not change their attitudes and actions.

      I ended up collapsing those thoughts together and wasn’t entirely clear.

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  46. duk14leon says:

    http://i.imgur.com/Sh75r.jpg

    This is something interesting. It says Rockstar planned to release GTA V simultaneously for PC as well. At least we know Rockstar intent to unlike GTA IV, which you can clearly see it was planned to release later.

  47. noodlecake says:

    I can’t wait for this! We haven’t had a decent open world, gangster themed game since GTA IV.