Well, that's a relief. Mostly. If you were to look at any given GTA forum, you'd think the sky was falling (as opposed to whales falling from the sky, which is actually happening). Rockstar is banning people right and left for using mods, single-player or multiplayer, claim fans. Rockstar, however, says they're doing nothing of the sort.
In a new Q&A, Rockstar tackled the "will modding get me banned" question head-on. They replied:
"We have always appreciated the creative efforts of the PC modding community and we still fondly remember the awesome zombie invasion mod and original GTA map mod for GTAIV PC among many other classics. To be clear, the modding policy in our licence has not changed and is the same as for GTAIV. Recent updates to GTAV PC had an unintended effect of making unplayable certain single player modifications. This was not intentional, no one has been banned for using single player modifications, and you should not worry about being banned or being relegated to the cheater pool just for using single player PC mods."
"Our primary focus is on protecting GTA Online against modifications that could give players an unfair advantage, disrupt gameplay, or cause griefing. It also bears mentioning that because game mods are by definition unauthorised, they may be broken by technical updates, cause instability, or affect your game in other unforeseen ways."
That's good news! Very good news, given that mods transformed GTA IV into a wholly different game over time, tuning up the ragged old roadster with glorious new graphics and Iron Man.
Still, questions remain. Foremost, why are so many people reporting that they have been banned? And what does Rockstar define as a mod that might affect GTA Online? After all, people are claiming that it's not particularly difficult for modders' current approach — modifying pre-existing game values and tricking the game into accepting the changes — to affect both single-player and multiplayer.
As of writing, Rockstar had yet to respond to my requests for comment. For now, though, where are you at with this? Have you modded your copy of GTA V for PC? If so, have you been banned or otherwise punished in any way, shape, or form?