Grand Theft Auto 6: Release Date, Leaks, News, Price & More

Grand Theft Auto 6: Release Date, Leaks, News, Price & More

The long-awaited Grand Theft Auto 6 is finally headed toward release. The long wait has been punishing for longtime fans of the series, waiting patiently for news or a release date on GTA 6. Now, at last, we’re finally learning more about Rockstar Games’ eagerly awaited crime sim through official channels, instead of waking up to another wave of GTA 6 leaks.

So, while we wait for that official GTA 6 release date, we thought we’d collate the confirmed facts about the game for you in one place.

As a primer, quite a bit of the information contained in this piece is thanks to the aforementioned mega-leak from September 2022, which provided details on the game’s setting, characters, and several other tidbits about what we can expect from the next Grand Theft Auto instalment.

Alongside this leaked information and the game’s first official trailer, Rockstar Games has also confirmed a small handful of details, including the main characters’ names and what players can expect to see in-game. There’s a lot to dig through, and some of it is potentially spoiler-y, so read at your discretion.

With the preamble out of the way, here’s everything we know about GTA 6 and what Rockstar Games is cooking. If you’d like to read more about the game’s map, setting, and confirmed locations so far, check out our guide to the GTA VI map here.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Latest GTA 6 News, Updates, Leaks

Has GTA 6 been officially announced?

Yes, it certainly has.

Rockstar Games officially announced “a new entry in the Grand Theft Auto series” on February 4, 2022, via a post on X, which was still known as “Twitter” at the time. It did not comment on any prospective GTA 6 release date — the news was only confirmation that the game was in production.

While we’re sure Rockstar would’ve liked to keep news and announcements on the next GTA game to just the announcement above, that didn’t happen. Still, before we get to the leaks and what happened there, let’s wrap up everything else we’ve learned from official sources.

Is there a GTA 6 release date, and which platforms will it be on?

According to the trailer, GTA 6 has set a 2025 release window. Take-Two Interactive, the game’s publisher, announced in its latest earnings report that it expects the most-anticipated sequel ever to hit PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S in fall of 2025 – that’s Spring for the Southern Hemisphere, meaning it’ll land some time between September and the end of November next year. If the standard pattern continues, PC will follow a year after launch (whenever that may be). Our expectations are based on Rockstar’s previous release strategies. It did the same thing with both Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption 2. Exactly what date in Fall 2025 GTA 6 will launch still a mystery, of course, but one we’re likely to hear more about as we inch closer to that release window.

Has Rockstar Released Any Official Trailers Or Screenshots?

YES. After setting a date for Wednesday, December 6, the GTA 6 trailer leaked online via an unknown third party. Rockstar shrugged, smiled, and simply pulled the trigger. The trailer went live shortly after the leak began to spread, and here it is in full:

Rockstar originally announced the trailer was on its way with a post to its social media accounts that racked up over 2 million likes on Twitter.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Further information came from the epic saga of Microsoft acquiring Activision. Page 24 of Microsoft’s 2022 response to the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) indicates that “Grand Theft Auto VI is expected to be released in 2024.” It turned out Microsoft’s information was (seemingly) not gleaned from internal information — it cited a piece by TechRadar as the source for that info.

As of right now, that’s about all the official information we have on GTA 6 and its release date.

This means the time has come to talk about the GTA 6 leaks and details gleaned from the trailer.

If you don’t want to be spoiled at all before the game’s first trailer drop, I’d encourage you to close this piece now and go about your day. Here, I’ll even drop a spoiler alert in to really hammer it home.

kotaku spoiler warning
Image: Kotaku Australia
Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Which city is GTA 6 set in?

The next Grand Theft Auto game will be set in Vice City, Leonida, which is the series’ take on Miami, Florida. And based on what’s been seen, it might have a pretty big map, too.

How do we know this? Well, the trailer makes it very clear with a full frame of Hollywood style letters spelling VICE backlit by the sun.

Grand Theft Auto most recently went back to Vice City with the PlayStation Portable title Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, which was based on the map as it existed in the ‘80s-themed Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, which starred the late, great Ray Liotta as Tommy Vercetti.

You should not, however, expect these maps to be identical. For one, the old-school Vice City layout was limited by what was possible on the PlayStation 2 and PSP, and starting with Grand Theft Auto IV, the series moved onto a different universe entirely, one that keeps the location names but features different characters and historical events.

That said, as seen in GTA V, Rockstar did include iconic locations from San Andreas in the “HD” universe, such as San Andreas’ Grove Street, so it wouldn’t be out of character for the new Vice City to include a few nods to the old map. Some fans have even gathered likely returning locations based on the leaked footage, which might include spots like Malibu Club, South Beach, and Redhill Forest, to name a few.

The GTA 6 trailer shows a lot of different locations, as well. There’s the sun-drenched beaches and cityscape of downtown Vice City, the muddy swamps and bayous of the Florida panhandle, dusty little towns, neon-lit clubs and more. Regardless of the GTA 6 map size, Rockstar is cramming in a lot of variety.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Who are the main characters in GTA 6?

GTA VI will star a crime duo this time around. They are Lucia and a still unnamed male who seem to be inspired by real-life, Great-Depression-era criminals Bonnie and Clyde. Rumours and leaks suggest this man’s name is Jason, but Rockstar has not confirmed anything so take it with a grain of salt for now. Similar to GTA V, leaked footage suggests you’ll use the d-pad to swap between them in-game. Lucia is not the series’ first playable woman character, but does become the first female lead in a GTA campaign. You can also spot Lucia’s partner in the game’s key art above.

We’ll find out more about these characters as the game continues toward release.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

What have we learned from the GTA 6 trailer?

Quite a bit actually. The trailer is filled to bursting with details, from state signs confirming the game is set in the state of Leonida, to various biomes across city and swamp. We learned that it’s definitely a game bound for current-gen platforms because there’s no way the poor old PS4 is running a game that looks like that. We can see that social media and particularly TikTok-styled lives have a part to play, with the names of what appears to be game’s new gangs and factions emblazoned on each live.

We learned that one of the main character’s names is Lucia, that she’s Latina, and has been recently released from prison. We see her with her (still unnamed) partner, a Bonnie and Clyde type duo.

We see people fending off alligators and driving hotted up sports cars. We see them driving boats and planes and quad bikes. We see them holding street car meets and races.

And there’s more to come.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

GTA 6 leaks: What happened, and what you need to know

Let us say up front: this piece will contain no images or video from the Grand Theft Auto VI leaks that appeared online earlier this year. We also won’t be telling you to find them. If you want to see them for yourself, we are sure they won’t be terribly difficult to find. We will only use official images and screens taken from trailers released by Rockstar directly.

What we can do is talk about the things the GTA 6 leaks taught us last year, and indulge in a little loose speculation based on what was seen.

The GTA 6 leaks were the result of a major security breach against Rockstar Games. On September 18, 2022, a hacker uploaded around 100 videos of unfinished, in-development footage from Grand Theft Auto 6. Following efforts to have the videos removed from the internet, Rockstar would later confirm their authenticity. It was the world’s first look at the game, and well before it was in any condition to show to the public. It would prove instructive, in some measure, for showing non-developers what the video game sausage looks like as it is being made.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Will GTA VI get DLC in the future?

Rockstar has yet to comment on possible expansions for the next Grand Theft Auto. However, the topic has been a popular area of rumour and speculation. For instance, on the GTAForums fan page, notable Grand Theft Auto leaker Tez2 claims Rockstar will drop new single-player story content for the next GTA in an episodic fashion over the course of the game’s lifecycle, instead of one-off DLC releases like the studio has done with GTA IV or RDR. This, Tez2 speculates, will help reduce worker crunch, something Rockstar Games has been cleaning up for a while, as Bloomberg reported in July 2022.

It’s fair to assume the studio wants people playing the next Grand Theft Auto for a long time, though what form ongoing support will take is still up in the air.

Screenshot: Rockstar Games, Kotaku Australia

Assorted GTA 6 news and gameplay details

Last year’s GTA 6 leaks were huge news — we learned that the game will star at least two playable protagonists, will be set in Vice City, and roughly how far along the game is likely to be in development, but there’s more.

Based on some videos from the leaks, it’s clear that GTA 6 will feature gameplay very similar to what’s come before, we’ve even got some hints about the possible random events. How these will manifest and unfold in the game is anyone’s guess right now, but event names such as “DUI Test,” “Scarface Crime Scene,” “UFO Animal House,” “Voice in a storm drain,” “warehouse sex robots,” and (of course) “fishing” have all been spotted in the leaks.

The leaks also indicate the presence of a number of GTA staples, and some new additions. There will be night life activities like visiting strip clubs, chances to enjoy nature via scuba diving, and driveable airboats, and animals to encounter, such as dogs, alligators, and raccoons. The leaks also suggest more dynamic interactions with police, with game prompts that seem to indicate that you’ll need to be more mindful of what vehicle you’re driving while evading the cops.

Also, it seems you won’t be pulling guns out of an infinite pocket-of-holding any longer. Characters appear to carry firearms on their person via slings. You also might be able to drop weapons, which, as Halo Infinite demonstrated (before it was patched to match the speed of weapon swapping), can be a neat, potentially faster way to discard empty guns instead of swapping them out for another weapon.

Characters are also able to drop prone in the leaked footage. That would be new to GTA, and as The Last of Us Part II demonstrates particularly well, is a great addition to a third-person shooter, allowing for more dynamic and unexpected actions, maneuverability, and shootouts (and potentially more accurate aim, based on standard video game logic).

And that’s about everything we know about Grand Theft Auto 6, based on both official and leaked information. What are you most excited about? Plant a flag: when do you think we’ll hear about a release date for GTA 6? Do you think Rockstar Games will hold GTA 6 on PC until a year after launch? Get in the comments, let us know.

Update: 5/12/23 11:48 AM AEDT: The GTA 6 trailer leaked online and Rockstar simply set the real thing live to combat it. We’ve updated the piece with the trailer and new information gleaned from it.

Update 4/12/23 10:20 AM AEDT: Updated the trailer section to reflect the weekend’s announcement that the first official GTA 6 trailer is imminent.

Image: Rockstar Games

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