5 Things That The GTA V Update Confirms
Eight months and ten days. That time period is just how long we have had to wait for Rockstar Games to reveal more information on Grand Theft Auto V since their effective but ambiguous trailer reveal. On November 16th, 2011, the legendary games publisher and developer set the rumour mill ablaze with barely two minutes of footage from the new entry. Since then, though they’ve relied on the series’ fame and consistent quality to fuel fan speculation and hopes with no concrete details on gameplay or a release window.
That all changed today, as Rockstar posted a new Q&A session on their official website to comment on the reasoning behind the silence and indeed to release two shiny new screenshots from GTA V. What exactly can we learn about their new project based on this single article? Here’s a roundup of everything you need to know about what could be the greatest open-world game yet…
1. THE SKY’S THE LIMIT
Any fans out there worried that the new incarnation of San Andreas will be too technically demanding to include aerial transportation can relax now. Better still, on top of the helicopters already included in GTA IV back in 2008, another fan-favourite air vehicle will be making its return to the franchise for the latest edition.
“[Liberty City] was simply too small for effective and enjoyable flying,” Rockstar said in their blog post. “It was the first time we made a high definition open world and it was a massive amount of work to make something on that scale – we simply could not make an environment big enough for planes to work properly. Fear not, they are returning in what is our biggest open world game to date.”
Hopefully the developers can iron out the creases, so to speak, in terms of players’ control of these airborne jets, seeing as it was hard to achieve a smooth journey in the original San Andreas. By reintroducing planes into the equation, though, the team definitely seem to be furthering the realistic yet lighter approach they appear to be taking for GTA V.
2. BIGGER IS BETTER…AND MORE CHALLENGING
If that comment about Grand Theft Auto‘s next instalment aspiring to be the company’s “biggest open world game to date” wasn’t enough to convince you that this is – as Rockstar say in their Q&A post – a “huge project”, then the first of the two released screenshots should do just that. Take a look for a second at the helicopter snippet below, then return here when you’re done just taking it all in.
Back? Good. Stunned? If your answer is “not quite”, then don’t worry – the hordes of online trolls aren’t going to try and reduce you to tears for your opinions just yet. Even I would be inclined to agree that at this point, the streets and roads of the city of Los Santos look a little bare for a GTA open-world. To be fair, though, Rockstar are keen to emphasise that they’re barely in a position to show us as much as they have today and that much of that initial trailer tease came from the very early stages of development.
All the same, the sheer scale of this new environment is staggering to say the least, and the mind certainly boggles at the thought of what this impressive world will look like when inhabited by the realistic AI and the dramatic events of the main storyline.
3. WE’RE ALL GOING ON A (VIOLENT) SUMMER HOLIDAY
While we can be sure that the trademark ludicrous violence of the GTA franchise will remain well and truly intact here – gunfights, stabbings, stray golf ball injuries, you name it and it’ll probably be included – the second of the two released screenshots (pictured below) gives another strong indication of the somewhat more upbeat tone the game seems to possess. Free of the tiresome monotones of the past entry and its DLC expansions, Grand Theft Auto V appears to boast more colourful tones and warm Miami Beach-esque environments to explore.
Perhaps this somewhat uncharacteristic new element of the graphics engine is intended to provoke a kind of irony given the recession-focused narrative. Could it be that a far darker plotline lies beneath the warm sunlight and pleasant citizens glimpsed here, echoing the consistent sense of corruption found seeping through each of the series’ locations? Someday, we’ll find out the answer to that question in a more definitive sense.
4. THE SILENCE IS MIGHTIER THAN THE SWORD
So why the lack of reveals from Rockstar on this ambitious new project? It’s probably best you hear the details on this one from the proverbial horse’s mouth.
Here’s the official word from the development team on the reasoning behind the lack of news: “As we have said before, we have often had long gaps between asset releases on previous games and will continue to do so in the future. We are sorry if you find this frustrating,” they say, “But please understand, we don’t do this because we ‘don’t care about our fans’ ‘don’t respect our fans’ ‘hate GTA fans etc.’- precisely the opposite! We do it because we want to make sure we release only 100% correct information, and because we want to keep plenty back for the actual release so there are still lots of surprises when you play it.”
It’s a sound justification for the recent radio silence – if anything, it almost feels as if Rockstar are taking a stab at the competitors of theirs who are often over keen to reveal too much of their titles before release. Of course, whether the studio can possibly live up to all of the hype and expectations that will build in the prolonged period of waiting around is a different matter altogether!
5. DON’T RUSH NOW WHAT YOU CAN RELEASE LATER
“We just have not been in a position to show more of the game than the trailer and will not be for a while yet.” These direct words from Rockstar serve as a good place to wrap up our analysis of the Grand Theft Auto V news update.
Sadly, although many analysts and fans were predicting a 2012 release date for the game, it seems the studio have pretty much totally debunked those rumours today with this comment. Bear in mind that Rockstar haven’t even gone so far as to announce launch consoles for the title, so as long as the ‘Gangs’ system can carry over to the next generation via Xbox Live and PSN, then it might be possible that we won’t see the game until late next year.
It’s refreshing to see a developer so intent on providing a high quality entertainment product these days regardless of the time and effort it takes them to do so. That said, such a welcome passion on Rockstar’s part certainly isn’t going to make the wait any easier…