As 2012 is almost complete and we prepare to level up to 2013 I thought it would be a good idea to run down some of the things we know about Grand Theft Auto V in preparation for the last bulk of information before its release in Spring 2013.
Lets start with its release. At this moment all we know is that it will be spring 2013 and wont be before April as confirmed by Take-Two, what we also learnt is that GTAV is only confirmed on the XBox360 and PlayStation3. According to Dan Houser, who is Rockstar Games VP of Creative and GTA writer, ‘’Everything else is up for consideration.’’ Sorry WiiU owners, that means no GTAV come release day for you. What you have to remember about Rockstar though would be that PC gamers still haven’t got the chance to play Red Dead Redemption so at this point I think its very much up in the air if they will release GTAV on the PC.
Other points revealed are that the entire map will be open from the start of the game and on a map that has been called bigger than GTAIV, Red Dead Redemption and GTA San Andreas combined with room to spare, that’s a huge playground right from the start. I just hope it doesn’t fall into the Need For Speed Most Wanted trap of giving us too much at the start. In NFS:MW they gave you every car and all the map from the start so all you had to do was find your favorite car, complete its races and then there was nothing left to play for. The redeeming feature of Grand Theft Auto games that there is a story that your guided through and as we all know, even after the story is complete, GTA game worlds tend to be excellent playgrounds just to let loose in which adds to the replay value.
Las Venturas and San Fierro are defiantly not in the game. Also downtown Los Santos will be smaller than the Liberty City, but that was a given.
Weapons will still be unlocked as the player progresses through the game, if players had everything it really would be NFS:MW, at least this gives us something to work for.
Multiple playable characters are in, thanks to games like Call of Duty and Medal of Honor paving the way with their multiple view points GTA are jumping on board and giving it a go. You will play as Michael, a semi-retired bank robber, Trevor, an emotionally unstable, sociopathic career criminal and Franklin, a repo guy working for an Armenian luxury car dealer.
It has been confirmed that you won’t be able to play through the entire story as just one character, you will occasionally need to swap which also applies during missions involving all three characters but during free roam you can be any of the three and go where ever you please.
You also are unable to kill the other characters, although I’m sure they just mean wont be able to kill them for good. I’m sure a well placed grenade would kill most characters in games.
Also it was confirmed that Trevor can set things alight randomly outside of missions and not just during specific missions (I believe this is referring to the Game Informer preview where they mention him picking up a gas can and blowing up a car with it.)
Entertainment inside entertainment is back. TV shows have been confirmed, there will be internet access on your in game smartphone, races ranging from cars to bikes and even the triathlon returns. There will be some character specific activities too.
Natural Motion’s Euphoria will be returning along with the RAGE engine. Everything seems to have been tweaked, from lighting all the way down to the way cars handle. Described as ‘boat-like’ in GTA:IV, Rockstar are aiming to make the vehicles handle much more like a racing game. Also diving makes a return with the underwater environments getting the same amount of love as the towns and cities throughout the World.
Animals are also in there, so far we have only seen dogs and seagulls but Rockstar do tend to keep some cards up their sleeves until closer to the release dates. Rockstar North studio head and GTA Producer Leslie Benzies has said that ‘’Animals aren’t just a backdrop’’ and that dogs will be actively guarding areas and making life difficult for players when they try sneak past them. Which brings a whole new angle to stealth gameplay in the GTA universe. Although the last real stealth gameplay was San Andreas so it makes sense to return now.
Speaking of dogs, hoes have been confirmed to be making a return.
Missions will be more freeform than other GTA games according to Leslie Benzies who is quoted as saying ‘’We tell you to go get something and the player decides how to do it – what characters they need on the job and what tools they need for those characters.’’
Characters from GTA III, Vice City and San Andreas will not be seen but there will be a couple of cameos from the GTA IV era, not the big names but familiar faces will emerge.
Downloadable Content (DLC) will return Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick has said ‘’I think you can safely assume that Rockstar, as the label that led the charge in downloadable content with Grand Theft Auto 4, I think you’d have every reason to believe, purely because of the ground-breaking nature of the title itself and the multiplayer in the title, that there’s going to be a lot of interesting stuff. But I’ll leave that to Rockstar to announce.’’ So hopefully the DLC will expand on some other things, not just giving us a whole new game but maybe adding a couple of weapons here and a car there. Although judging by the way multiplayer is mentioned it will follow the Red Dead Redemption DLC and expand on that leaving offline players with just the base game till they release another Grand Theft Auto.
Finally onto the multiplayer since I have to at least mention it. The story will not contain co-op. Rockstar have spent a lot of time on the multiplayer, Strauss Zelnick said ‘’refining open world multiplayer into something really special…we are very excited to share more information with people soon’’