Why People Still Play GTA V
In 2013, Grand Theft Auto V was released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 to critical acclaim and huge sales. In just three days, the game made a staggering $1 billion. It didn’t release on PC until 2015 but was still the biggest selling PC game of that year. Two weeks after the game’s original console release, GTA Online launched as a free update for all owners of the game. Fast forward six years and GTA V has sold over 90 million copies and has made over $6 billion which is more than the three Marvel Avengers movies combined. If you look at the latest UK gaming chart, you’ll find GTA still firmly in the top 10, where it has remained since 2013.
With incredible sales figures and a game that isn’t Rockstar’s latest title any more – after the 2018 release of Red Dead Redemption 2 – why are so many people still playing GTA?
Replay Value of the Single Player Campaign
The original launch of GTA V gave players a pure, GTA experience including a story with the usual drama and thrills everybody had come to expect. Rockstar had even evolved their single player story with three characters to play as – Michael, Trevor and Lincoln – who offered players widely different characters and skills. With so much depth added to each character, their larger-than-life roles matched the huge open world they live in. With lots of easter eggs to find and little mysteries surrounding the lore of Los Santos, players can’t help but dig deeper into it.
GTA Online has been a huge hit with players as over 70 million players have enjoyed the endless possibilities of the open world playground. The experience gives players the chance to try new modes with and against friends as well as players from all around the world. It made GTA feel bigger than its already sizeable base experience. Whether it was deathmatches, races, stunt missions or heists there was plenty to do. Throw in the ability to purchase property, cars and boats with your ill-gotten gains to create your own online criminal empire, there was plenty to keep players coming back.
Every year also brought new updates, starting with Beach Bum in November 2013 which added beach-themed missions and apparel for avatars. From there, the updates got bigger and bigger including Cunning Stunts, Gunrunning and After Hours to name a few. It brought players new opportunities such as stunt races, owning an underground bunker and creating a nightlife business. Seasonal updates were also frequent with celebrations such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day and Independence Day all bringing themed items and missions to the game. Throw in double RP weekends and GTA cash rewards, alongside discounted items, it gives players reasons to keep ranking, earning and spending.
No game had given players such an opportunity to create their own criminal empire in such a way, that was live and always updated. Even with the release of Red Dead Redemption II and its own online counterpart Red Dead Online, there is still a huge player base who aren’t ready to leave Los Santos just yet.
Remastered GTA Experience
When GTA V released in October 2013, it was created for the seventh-generation of consoles. The eighth generation consoles were to be released later that month, which means the game wasn’t ready for that jump onto newer consoles on launch. However, Rockstar had been planning for a relaunch a year later.
In November 2014, GTA V was re-released on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One but it wasn’t just a cheap remaster. The game featured an increased draw distance, finer textures, denser traffic, new weather effects and new wildlife and vegetation. It also included a first-person mode, a first for the series. The inclusion of a FPS mode meant the animation system for the game had to be completely overhauled. It was a real investment in a game Rockstar knew would keep selling no matter the platform. They also added a feature which allowed GTA Online players to transfer their progress to the newer consoles, giving players an incentive to upgrade.
A PC version would follow in April 2015 which pushed the capabilities of the game further at 60 frames per second and 4K resolution. This gave the game a new audience who had been waiting for its release for nearly two years after its console counterpart.
Some of the most famous cheat codes in history can be found in the Grand Theft Auto series. GTA V was next to add its own cheats to the franchise. The usual cheats could be found including Invincibility, max health and armour, spawning of weapons. More out there cheats included the super jump so you could leap high, skyfall which spawned you mid-air without a parachute and drunk mode which sees your player stumble around swigging alcohol.
Cheats are exclusive to the single-player mode as they are banned from GTA Online – as this would cause chaos in an online world that needs to be finely balanced for players. It makes it the perfect excuse to replay the main story with a few interesting tweaks.
Video games act as the perfect escape from reality. In a game with a huge scope like GTA V, it’s easy to just get lost in it, whatever you choose to do. Whether you’re replaying the story, building your criminal empire online or taking a drive into the Los Santos sunset, there’s something for everyone to do, especially while we still await the release of GTA 6.