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GTA 6 trailer reactions: Flamingos and gators a go-go, but no BMX bikes?

The RPS Treehouse weigh in on Rockstar's new trailer

Lucia, the female protagonist of GTA 6, sits in prison overalls in an office.
Image credit: Rockstar Games

The first trailer for GTA 6 might have gone live ahead of schedule just as most of us in the RPS Treehouse were tucking down for bed last night, but it has, to no one's surprise at all, captivated the internet at large regardless. Now that we've had some time to digest and absorb it properly (and not with the words "BUY BTC" plastered across it), we've gathered some of our initial thoughts about the trailer below. And what can I say? A lot of us were very taken with those lovely flamingos.

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Edwin: The trailer addressed my greatest fear for the game, inasmuch as neither main character appears to be an arsehole. Instead of GTA 5’s bland-to-rancid bloke ensemble, we get the promised heartthrob crime duo a la Bonnie and Clyde, which I really should watch one of these days – I wonder if they ever do any paragliding? Anyway, it feels like the stage is being set here for a less abrasive story, though I wouldn't say either character has fired my imagination just yet, and there’s still plenty of time for Rockstar to introduce a Trevor equivalent. Beyond that – the setting is as enveloping as you’d expect from GTA, but I’m struggling to see anything I might do there that I can’t do in (vanilla) GTA 5 or GTA Online.

Katharine: GTA has never been a series that's held much sway for me personally, but I can't deny that from a visual perspective, GTA 6 looks pretty phenomenal. Red Dead Redemption 2 proved Rockstar were already masters at atmospheric lighting, and from the opening shots of the lush, purple dawn to the misty orange sun as a riverboat kicks up froth through the reeds, this is absolutely a world I want to explore and experience - if only so I can drive/sail/bike/fly through clouds of those gorgeous looking flamingos and marvel at their hot pink feathers. As Edwin notes above, it helps that the central duo seem to be reasonably all right human beings for once and not total scumbags, which I think will help make it a more approachable and less grim time for everyone. I am somewhat mildly depressed that TV watching appears to have been replaced by a TikTok-esque social network, but here's hoping the car radio stations will still be filled with Tom Petty-esque classics to set the mood.

Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Image credit: Rockstar Games

Ed: It's no surprise that I'm impressed by how good it all looks. You know, the glow of tanning oil on people's skin as they stroll along the beach, the density of the crowds, and, crucially, the flamingos. Finally, it seems we're getting a game that's truly built for next-gen! But the whole TikTok parody has me worried what sort of boring, slightly cringe system is tied to it. If I have to whip out my phone and engage with a fake audience to up my follower count and earn "Notoriety Bucks", it will make me sad. Still, I can't say I'm not excited to see more.

Jeremy: This trailer is legitimately the only piece of media that's made me miss the United States since moving to the UK. I had a hard time falling asleep after watching it last night, and "Love is a Long Road" was stuck in my dreams. I haven't played a GTA in full since 2009's Chinatown Wars (underrated gem, by the way), but I've always been appreciative of how Rockstar somehow manages to capture the most sizzling portrayals of the weird mess that is America. From the POV of someone who used to work in breaking news and needed to source cop footage and clips of gators breaking into Florida homes on a regular basis - everything in that trailer was peak USA, for better or for worse, and I'm very much looking forward to experiencing the new Miami - I mean Vice City - for myself and seeing if all of those TikTok-heavy vibes manage to still stay relevant by the time this game comes out. Props to Rockstar for also finally featuring the first femme protagonist since GTA 1 (about time), but no props to them for not announcing a PC release (boo).

Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Image credit: Rockstar Games

James: It sure looks like a Grand Theft Auto. If I’m honest I always end up grating against the core GTA fantasy, which invariably casts you as a massive arsehole, doing arseholish things, with and to other arseholes. I don’t mean that in a pearlclutching way – I’ve slaughtered thousands in other games – but it’s hard to put in the hours when I don’t actually want my guy to succeed. Or guy and girl, in this case. I am mildly intrigued by the apparent social media focus, though again, I worry I’ll find the satire more fatiguing than funny. Do I not inflict enough of these hellsites upon myself as it is?

Ollie: Lots of eyecandy here. Cars, wildlife, scantily clad humans - pick your poison. I think my favourite shot was of those flamingos flying through the everglades. How many alligators can you spot in that shot? I make five. I've never played a GTA game before so I'm no expert, but yes, it does look very, very pretty. I also appreciate the many different body types we see from all the NPCs, and the little cosmetic imperfections. Acne scars, moles, body shapes of all kinds. Inclusive and immersive. I'm always one to remind people that it's just a trailer, it won't look this pretty. But then, these are the devs who made RDR2.

Scenes from Leonida in the first Grand Theft Auto 6 trailer.
Image credit: Rockstar Games

Kiera: I'm cautiously optimistic, it seems like Rockstar is going to focus heavily on bringing GTA into the modern age and social media will play a large part in that. From the trailer cinematics, Vice City looks like it's thriving, full of quirky NPCs displaying that classic GTA humour. I hope that they do include a good number of NPCs in the actual gameplay. It could affect performance but I think it's an important factor for the city to feel lived in. Fingers crossed it lives up to fan expectations, although, with a release window of 2025 and the time it's already had cooking in people's minds, that might be a tall order.

Alice0: Following careful frame-by-frame analysis of the trailer, I can only conclude that GTA 6 has forgotten the heart of the series. I don't see anyone hopping a BMX over traffic. I don't see a BMX at all. Grave concerns. What will you even do in this game. Though I would settle for ramping airboats.

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Grand Theft Auto 6

PS5, Xbox Series X/S

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Katharine Castle avatar

Katharine Castle

Editor-in-chief

Katharine is RPS' editor-in-chief, which means she's now to blame for all this. After joining the team in 2017, she spent four years in the RPS hardware mines. Now she leads the RPS editorial team and plays pretty much anything she can get her hands on. She's very partial to JRPGs and the fetching of quests, but also loves strategy and turn-based tactics games and will never say no to a good Metroidvania.

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