Even though Red Dead Redemption 2 already sold over 23 million copies, Rockstar’s western action-adventure game can’t really hold a candle to the company’s biggest juggernaut yet, GTA 5. The title sold a whopping 100 million copies since launch, making it the third best-selling video game of all time. But with GTA 5 starting to show its age, fans of the series are now eagerly awaiting the next entry. Rumors surrounding the game have been around for years but we haven’t heard anything solid until very recently.
Just a few days ago, a new leak popped up on Reddit that sparked the imagination of the GTA community. We’ve seen leaks like this in the past but this one seems more reliable than most. At the time of this writing, the leak is no longer available but the info can still be found online. The leak is said to have been posted on Pastebin from a guest account. That means it couldn’t have been removed by the original uploader. This indicates that there’s a high possibility that Rockstar itself took it down, which seems a bit suspicious. Let’s take a look at what it says and what we can learn from it.
GTA 6 Setting
As I’m sure you’re well aware, the last several titles in the series featured cities that emulated real-world locations. For example, Vice City represents Miami, Liberty City represents New York, and Los Santos represents Los Angeles. There has been a lot of speculation over the years regarding the new game setting and the city it will emulate. Turns out, the next set might be a bit unexpected for some. According to the leak, the game will actually take place across multiple big cities, including Liberty City and Vice City.
This fits in rather well with a previous leak that came out last year and mentioned something similar. The source of that particular leak mentioned he was a third-party developer. Apparently, he was “helping a well-known company in a AAA game development that is set to release in 2020.” It’s hard to say which company the leakster was referring to because he mentioned games from a variety of developers. In regards specifically to GTA 6, he mentioned two big cities – Miami and New York. As mentioned earlier, these represent Vice City and Liberty City.
It has been rumored for years that Rockstar will one day develop a GTA game that will feature multiple sprawling cities. This wouldn’t have been possible in the past due to hardware limitations but that’s no longer the case. GTA 5’s Los Santos is comprised of three huge areas so that’s already one step closer to the final goal.
In addition, Red Dead Redemption 2 contains most of the map found in the original Red Dead Redemption. It’s pretty clear that Rockstar has been interested in creating a game with multiple big maps for a while now. RDR2 certainly gave us a taste of that. Now it looks like GTA 6 will be the game that will truly bring that vision to life.
Will the Game be Set in the Present?
Both GTA 5 and GTA 4 take place in the same year they were released in. Namely, 2013 for GTA 5 and 2008 for GTA 4. When it comes to the upcoming game, however, it looks like the developers want to do things differently. Back in 2018, Rockstar expressed its concerns about developing a GTA game set in the modern day socio-political climate.
Rockstar never backed away from satire and offensive content. However, creating a Grand Theft Auto title that takes place in this day and age would likely trigger too many people and that’s bad for business. Instead, it seems more likely that Rockstar would want to develop another title set in the past.
The company already did this with GTA: Vice City, which came out in 2002 but was set in 1986. It’s not a stretch to say that the 80s-inspired aesthetic made Vice City so memorable in the first place. If Rockstar wants to revisit Vice City in the new version of GTA like all the leaks seems to suggest, it would make the most sense to have the game take place during that time period again rather than the present.
GTA 6 Story Details
The most recent GTA 6 leak included some very interesting details regarding the game’s story. The game apparently begins in Liberty City where the player takes on the role of a small-time gangster. After doing odd jobs and small thefts for a while, you will have the option to travel to Vice City. There, you can join a full-fledged criminal gang and you’ll be eventually sent back to Liberty City to keep an eye on business. After climbing through the ranks of the organization, the player will be able to return to Vice City in the later stages of the game and start running the whole operating. And allegedly also become a drug lord in the process.
It’s worth remembering that this is technically still a leak so take it with a grain of salt. However, this short synopsis does sound believable. Pretty much all the other games in the series featured a fairly similar rags-to-riches story. You start off as a small-time thug and make your way up until you eventually reach the top of the criminal ladder. Classic Rockstar story. This type of storytelling also seems to work pretty well in a game that features multiple cities. Judging by what the leakster says, there will be plenty of back and forth between Liberty City and Vice City. That makes perfect sense as players would want to explore as much of the two maps as possible.
Other Notable Features
Red Dead Redemption 2’s huge success has no doubt prompted Rockstar to take some of the features that were popular in the western-themed game and implement them in new game. Word on the street is that one of these features is related to how shops will work in the game. Similar to RDR2, players will be able to find different items at shops found in different areas of the map. These items are unique and won’t be found at shops located in different areas.
Another important feature that will likely borrow from RDR2 is stranger missions. Stranger missions are an important part of Red Dead Redemption 2. They function like optional side-quests that players can pursue alongside the main story. These missions don’t show up on the map unless the player is relatively close to the quest giver. Even then, it takes a bit of digging around until you can pinpoint the exact location from where you can start the quest. Stranger quests are entirely optional but they often grant interesting rewards and are almost always worth pursuing.
Finally, players can expect in the new game to feature a lot of countrysides and open roads. Given that the game will include at least two major cities, it stands to reason that there has to be an extensive system of highways and country roads connecting them. After all, driving around in various vehicles is a core component of the gameplay. Having many roads to drive on is definitely to be expected.
New York (Liberty City) and Miami (Vice City) are quite far apart on the real-world map of the USA so we can’t realistically expect the roads to stretch across the whole distance. The two cities will most likely be located much closer to each other than in real life. Either that or GTA 6 will include some sort of fast travel system that will allow players to quickly move back and forth between the two locations.
Will the Game Release for Current-Gen Systems?
Platform availability is another important aspect that’s worth mentioning when talking about GTA 6. First off, the game is pretty much guaranteed to come out on PC, much like all the other GTAs. Possibly not at launch, as was the case with GTA 5, but definitely at some point. So what about consoles? Well, if you like to keep yourself up to date with what’s going on in the gaming industry, you probably already now that the current generation of consoles is on its way out.
Both Sony and Microsoft have expressed an interest in launching brand new consoles in the near future. Knowing Rockstar, the company is most likely developing his new version of GTA with the PS5 and Xbox 2 in mind. Therefore, we probably shouldn’t expect the game to launch for PS4 or Xbox One. It’s interesting to note that GTA 5 didn’t originally launch for these consoles either. Instead, it was later ported to the PS4 and Xbox One post-launch.
The most recent game leak also states that the game will not come out for the current generation of consoles. The post mentions that this is primarily because of memory restrictions. The other leak we mentioned earlier said something similar in regards to platform availability. In addition, the post also noted that Sony might be looking to strike an exclusivity deal with Rockstar. As part of this deal, new GTA would launch as a PS5 exclusive and will only release on other platforms after 30 days. Exclusivity deals are not uncommon in the gaming industry but this one sounds a bit farfetched. Take it for what it is.
The multiplayer component of GTA 5 is one of the main reasons why the game still remains popular to this day. And also one of the main reasons why Rockstar continues to make huge money off the game. The company even added a similar system to RDR2 so we can definitely expect GTA 6 to have one.
According to the most recent leak, there are already big plans for the multiplayer component. In addition to introducing a lot of content post-launch, Rockstar apparently also wants to work closely with Sony and Microsoft on cloud gaming. The end goal is to set up more stable servers and ensure that the online component will be a continuous process. This should fix the problem with disconnects that GTA 5 suffers from, which will lead to an overall better experience for the multiplayer.
GTA Release Schedule so Far
Leaks and rumors are certainly interesting to discuss but knowing something concrete about the release date would be even better. While we can’t say anything for certain right now, we can make a few educated guesses based on the release schedules of previous GTA games and Rockstar’s desire to launch the new title after the new generation of consoles hits the market.
Rockstar doesn’t have a very consistent schedule when it comes to releasing GTA games. The company released the first three titles between 1997 and 2001 so there were only a couple of years between releases at first. However, it then took 7 years until the next game was released (GTA 4) and then the next one came 5 years later (GTA 5).
To be clear, we’re only talking about games that are part of the main series. We’re not including titles like GTA: Vice City and GTA: San Andreas because Rockstar doesn’t seem to be interested in such projects anymore and is instead focusing on enhancing its newest games with persistent multiplayer components.
GTA 6 Release Date
If it takes Rockstar 5-7 years to develop a new GTA game and the last one came out in 2013, we should be seeing Grand Theft Auto 6 by 2020. Maybe. The latest entry in the series will likely be the most ambitious to date so a 2020 release date seems a bit optimistic. Granted, one of the leaks mentioned earlier did say that the game should come out during Holiday 2020.
Meanwhile, the most recent leak noted that Rockstar “has an idea about when they want to release the game but the corporates want to analyze the sales of PS5 and the Xbox 2.” Sources from inside Sony and Microsoft have indicated that the PS5 and Xbox 2 will launch either in March or November of 2020. Given that Rockstar wants to first analyze the sales of the consoles before releasing its newest title, it’s safe to assume that the game will probably launch at least 6 months to 1 year after the consoles.
If both consoles release in March 2020 like many are predicting, it’s not impossible for the game to come out during Holiday 2020. However, a much safer prediction would have to be 2021. We all know Rockstar likes to announce its newest games at least one year before launch. If anything, we should at least see an official announcement in 2020 even if the game doesn’t launch until 2021. At the end of the day, the release date of GTA 6 might not be as close as some might. But a 2-year wait isn’t that long considering it’s already been 6 years since GTA 5.
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