Rockstar: GTA V Bigger Than Red Dead Redemption, San Andreas And GTA IV Combined

The digital issue of December's Game Informer is out now, and with it comes a boatload of new information on Grand Theft Auto V, including the fact that its world will be bigger than the worlds of Red Dead Redemption, San Andreas and Grand Theft Auto IV combined.

Holy crap.

You should read Game Informer for the full look, but here are a few big details we've learned from the magazine's latest cover story:

  • According to Rockstar, Grand Theft Auto V's Los Santos is bigger than Red Dead Redemption, San Andreas, and Grand Theft Auto IV combined. Yep. There's wilderness, a military base, and even an ocean floor to explore underwater.
  • You can switch between the game's three main protagonists at "nearly any time."
  • Those three protagonists, by the way, are named Michael, Trevor, and Franklin.
  • Each character has his own personality, skill set, and group of friends to interact with. And the ones you're not controlling will go off and do their own thing.
  • This is the same world as Grand Theft Auto IV and Liberty City, so you might see some recurring characters from those games (just not the major ones, like Niko Bellic). But. Rockstar says this is the "high-definition" world of Grand Theft Auto, so don't expect to see anyone from the PS2-era titles.
  • Remember those randomised dynamic missions in Red Dead Redemption? They're back for GTAV: expect hitchhikers, muggers, and dead bodies, among others.
  • Yes friendships. No romance.

You can get the digital copy of this month's Game Informer online right now. The dead-tree edition should be out within the next week or so.


    I'm guessing the xbox version will be multiple disks if this is the case?
    And Michael, Trevor and Franklin are pretty badass names

      Hopefully they'll go the Halo 4 route and allow you to install the 2nd/3rd discs and play from the first, something they should have been letting us do ever since installation to hard drive was a thing.

        Hopefully.. I got annoyed that it was two disks but once I found out what it did, I was impressed! That's how multiple disc games should be

          And that's why blueray rocks. I couldn't imagine playing an enormous game like metal gear solid 4 on an Xbox, it would be 20 discs haha.

    Shut up and take my money.

      ok. I'll email you the details where you can deposit it.

      oh wait, you want something awesome in return...

    No romance? Lame! I thought that was a pretty cool feature in San Andreas and GTA IV. If you're going to add friendships, it's not much of a leap to add dating, is it?

    This is just more caving in to 'Ewww! Dating sims are gross! Stay in Japan!' pressure from uneducated morons who only want to play the exact same shooter every year and still pre-order every game from EB Games despite the huge price ripoff.

      Maybe they'll handle romance like sleeping dogs did. One date where they throw some basic challenges at you and when you succeed you bang them ans never call them back again. I liked that style :D

        I'm the opposite. I thought the Sleeping Dogs romance subplots were woefully underplayed. In retrospect I can see why those relationships didn't last, but I would have liked a little more exploration in this area. Undertaking the dates for the sole purpose of letting me have in-game unlocks is fine, but making me feel like an asshole for cheating when I didn't even know I was in a relationship was a bit of a copout.

          The Sleeping Dogs dates were ridiculously half assed but i wasn't sure if it was my fault or the design of the game.

          After that chick got annoyed at me for cheating on her I threw here in the back of a car, drove her out to the docks and pushed her face into a ventilation fan*....... To be honest I figured the game wouldn't pick up on what I did and that there would still be some kind of further follow up story later in the game. Then when it didn't happen I wasn't sure if it was just the game being half assed or if the mission was cancelled because of what I did.

          *I was having girl problems.... these things happen.... games are healthy.

            All the dates are scripted one-shots. Amanda just has a fetish for Asian guys, based on the surveillance report you get on her after your date in the park, and is apparently on a mission to have sex with all of them. Presumably Wei loses interest in her after he learns this.

            Not Ping and the karaoke hostess find out about each other once you date both of them, which you find out because after you date both of them you get a side mission series where you find out the hostess is cheating on you, and she calls you on it. Not Ping dumps you after that.

            The Russian freerunner seems to be the most organic romance because as far as I can tell it's non-optional. Wei's connection with her leads to a police mission where you have to rescue her friend from sex traffickers, and after that she disappears. That only leaves the rich girl who's friends with Vivienne. I guess since that's the last relationship introduced that isn't specifically interrupted by anything in the same, you could assume that it's ongoing but offscreen.

            I guess my real issue is that you can ONLY date each girl once, and it's purely for the purpose of unlocking in-game bonuses. Like, maybe I would have been happy to only date Not Ping, if that had even been an option! I guess the implication is that there's lots of "offscreen" romantic development that you never see, else Wei just happened to stumble across the five easiest girls in Hong Kong.

            It's pretty sexist, when you look at it that way.

      Agreed, stupid to remove this wholesale, clearly it was poorly handled in GTAIV but to just go and cut it out completely sounds half assed. Not to mention if friendships means your cousin ringing every 5 mins because you won't go bowling with him it is still a mess

        For everyone who complained about "Heeeeyyy Cousinsnnn". There was an option to turn that off in game. Yes, you heard correctly.

      As long as they don't remove the ability to shag prostitutes.
      That counts as romance, doesn't it?

    I'm always hesitant when a game dev throws huge numbers at me like, the size of GTAV. For all we know they're counting the seabed as extra land.

      Of course they are! Umm, red dead has water.. As did Gta 3. Clearly it means distance, you sook. Already whining.

        I liked the bit where you used a personal attack on somebody whose opinion you didn't like. That was awesome.

        It's funny because it does include underwater. And you are an idiot.

      Yep, same here. Bigger isn't necessarily better. Red Dead Redemption and GTA:SA both had vast expanses of land with very little interesting to actually do in them. GTA:SA especially, which spread it's game so thin over such a vast area that it was just tedious. RDR at least handled the empty space better, largely due to the western setting which made the emptiness part of its appeal. GTA IV managed to get the GTA series moving in the right direction again after SA, hopefully this won't sink back into the dull drudgery of San Andreas.

        I must be in a minority, but I loved San Andreas, and didn't find it needlessly empty, either.

          Nope, I agree. I loved San Andreas WAY more than GTAIV. Couldn't go on impromptu road trips in GTAIV, and I missed the countryside.

            I liked the space between major cities, it was fun flying a small biplane or using a dirt bike for a few miles with nothing but 'A horse with no name' for company... And the cities were expansive enough once you finally got to them to be fun. San Andreas was perfection in a lot of ways, and I loved GTA IV but it didn't feel as exploratory, I never felt I was missing out on anything on the other side of the game world like I did with San Andreas.

              It's all a matter of personal preference, obviously. My problem with it was more what happened if you got stuck out there e.g. if you crashed your bike/plane and had to walk to the nearest city/freeway to get another vehicle. RDR at least gave you the ability to whistle up a horse whenever you needed one, which was very handy :)

              I'm not saying that I think the game will be horrible just because it's big - I'm just saying I hope they're making it big because they've got a lot of interesting stuff for us to do in there rather than just making it big for the sake of being able to say it's the biggest one ever.

                I think the RDR example is apt: they're looking for ways to minimise the chances of being stranded. Characters will have mobile phones in GTAV presumably. Being stranded doesn't tend to happen so much in open-world these days.

                Also, in a game with no real penalty for death, you could always just throw yourself into the nearest river or off a mountaintop :P

                Last edited 09/11/12 12:01 pm

                Since getting 'stranded' was a big issue in SA for a lot of people I'm pretty sure that they'll have developed a way out in V for you (a friend with an ATV or helicopter). Either way more is always better when it comes to world size in games imho. Don't go off in to the wilderness if your going to complain when your vehicle dies. Random encounters/missions shows that there'll always be SOMETHING to do out there anyway.

        I thought gtasa was a far better game than gta4. The expansive scenery was part of the reason.

      Yeah except you can likely explore the seabed like you could in GTA SA

        I really doubt exploring a seabed will be much fun after the first five minutes. Sounds like an excuse to hide collectibles.

          If there aren't nuclear submarines and aircraft carriers to hijack, it's a missed opportunity :P

            Good call. Submarines would be awesome

          I like collectables. So I will be exploring the seabed too.

      dear god i hope i can spawn helicopters easily
      i HATE driving around

    Oh, awesome. Spoke too soon in the other article. 3 main characters you can swap between at any time? Amazing!

      3 protags with different skill set's makes it sound a bit like Commando's whre you can swap between your sapper, green beret, spy etc ... or going back old skool ... those Amiga Gobliins games. It'll be interesting to see how well it works in a 'sandbox' game. Surely it's game over if one guy get's massacred while you're controlling another,

    Dating was a waste of time in san andreas and gta iv anyway, gotta make it have some sort of advantage i agree with @Phlaiman make it like sleeping dogs is fine.

    No mobile phone, plx.

      Yeah... because no mobile in a modern day set game is gonna happen O_o

      Confirmed. All 3 protagonists carry around a cumbersome iPad which have One Direction as an unchangeable email notification tone. You get an email on average about twice a minute, and you cant skip / mute the notification tone.
      For users with Kinect, you can use the voice-to-text feature. Simply say the name of the NPC you wish to contact, then a short message that will be sent. For example -
      "Garry Dwyer - Need backup. Meet me at the football stadium"
      For an added level of realism, the talk to text feature doesn't work too well. The above command will inevitably result in Greg Baldwin hanging around Footlocker armed to the teeth with assault rifles & grenades taking pot shots at pensioners.

      This was implemented because market research showed that GTA fans found that the mobile phone for GTA IV wasnt annoying enough.

      Disclaimer: all of the above is complete made up bullshit.

      Edit: Spelling

      Last edited 09/11/12 9:57 am

        Hahaha that was awesome!!

    Bit of a d. move basically cutting and pasting a magazines exclusive content. Then you have the audacity to tell us to still buy it.

      Being exclusive content, with all the outlets reporting "the December edition of Game Informer" and linking back to the product, I think it's working out just how GI would want it to.

        Also, I'm sure there are arrangements in place for a summary like the one above serving as a teaser for the 10+ page article in the magazine. Fair use principles, etc.

          At least they didn't just scan the entire article and link to the pages like some other sites do/would.

          Hopefully but the cynic in me - doubts it. The earlier post with the cover does indeed not SPOIL the entire article but THIS article has just ripped off a proper journalists work. How many of the people reading this are now going to buy game informer for this article? None.IMO.

            I will be buyin this issue of Game Informer. It contains the World Exclusive on GTA 5.

    Hmm. Multiple interchangeable protagonists with different skillsets DOES seem like a natural evolution for sandbox gaming (we've certainly seen it work in plenty of other areas) but I'm not sure if I'm going to like it. I have to trust there was a reason for it and that it'll make sense when I get there.

      Think "Three Vikings" in an open world. That's what I'm doing.

        Three Vikings? I'm revoking your gaming license.

        LOL. Hopefully we get big viking axes!!!

        Lost vikings ?

          Shit. Yes, this is the one I meant.
          I'll be over here now.

    Eh, I'd rather another GTA2-like game. Chinatown Wars was awesome, though slightly disappointing in how it was missing a lot of things that 2 had.

    Last edited 09/11/12 9:54 am

    As long as I don't have to follow the damn train, I'm excited.


    "Remember those randomised dynamic missions in Red Dead Redemption?" Sadly no because I have never had the chance to play it =( Sometimes I wish I could afford a console... Actually I just wish Rockstar would have it ported to PC!

    Anyway, I am really intrigued by the whole 3 protagonist thing, I can see myself sinking a lot of hours into this game..

      I can afford a console (I actually own the 360) I just can't stand consoles anymore. My sister has taken ownership of my 360 about 2 months after I bought it a few years ago :/

      It's $200 for an 360, how can you not afford that?

        Virus up there aint the only one without $200 that he can just splash out on a console.
        Hell, if I had a spare $200 I probably wouldn't spend it on a console anyway.

        If my 360 dies, I won't be replacing it. I don't have $200 to my name at the moment. Single-income family, 2 kids and a mortgage eats up more $$ than you might think.

        No real income at the moment, and i've been a PC gamer for too long now to really feel like going back to consoles. Though said that I still want a PS3. But yeah.

    Intriguing stuff.

    One thing I hope they add is and 'MP3 player'.
    Sure, it's cool that only the cars have music, but sometimes you just want it to continue as you walk around too.
    You've probably got a mobile phone again (most likely a 'smart phone'). Would it be so hard to have the player to plop on some headphones?
    For fun, they could even have you 'download' the radio songs in the game's 'Internet' (or as a way to use music from your harddrive). With options to pay, or pirate a whole lot. If you pirate, then you instantly get the FBI after you.

      I like the idea of the mp3 player to give the option of music outside of cars, but the whole downloading & piracy & FBI thing might be going a bit too far :p

        You had a 4 star wanted level (FBI) in GTAIV if you tried to access the 'Child Model' website in the in-game Internet.
        Thinking it'd be a fun extension on that.

          i think that was a intended just as a bit of an easter egg thing, but sure, if it was a similar idea, like you go to a website in game for downloading pirate stuff, then the FBI get onto you, then that would work.

      Buying songs that are featured on the radio to put onto your phone (and playing them at will) would be brilliant. You could even (as in the PC version, not sure if consoles had this) have a "Custom" (Independance FM) station (or in-car MP3 player) which features all your own music from your console hard drive and include the single tracks you brought from in-game.

      I have a stereo in my house. It plays music.

      Some interesting ideas there, but by god would it be complicated to 'play' in game.

      MP3 player is a cool idea, or they could use an older technology... lets face it - the music is on a RADIO, so how hard would it be to allow your character to have a portable radio?

    The more I read about this game the angrier and sadder I get at the realisation it's probably not coming to PC.

      It will, Rockstar has delayed their PC releases of recent (minus RDR) for anywhere upto 6 months =/

    Please, please pleaaaaaaaaaase don't run off the same engine as GTA4...
    Absolutely cannot stand that game as much as I really want to enjoy it...

      Exactly, I've tried to play it at least 4 times and all of those attempts have ended in me getting sick of the controls/physics after a few missions. It feels more like a traffic simulator than a GTA game. Saints Row games feel more like an actual successor to the fun and mayhem of the GTAIII games.

    Someone needs to turn this into a zombie mod

    This will be the best game of all time.

    San Andreas is still kicking IV's butt with online play. V will have to be very different and superior to IV in order to steal players from and sink SA-MP.

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