When it comes to discussing the biggest ever franchises to emerge in the world of video gaming, the conversation simply cannot pass without a reference to the mighty Grand Theft Auto. The exciting and often controversial series of games have enjoyed a huge amount of success since the late 1990s, with each subsequent release seemingly generating more buzz than what has gone before.
With that in mind, it is understandable why a real sense of anticipation is already building regarding the rumoured launch of a sixth game in the franchise. Reports have suggested that the production of the game is underway, with one, in particular, providing a few indicators as to what we might be able to expect.
New game hints
In the middle of April, Kotaku published an article on the culture within the developer Rockstar Games and it included some references to the creation of a new Grand Theft Auto title.
More specifically, it suggested the game is in development and also hinted at the size and scope of what could be expected. According to the site, the current plan is reported that the title will be of moderate size but then get plenty of expansion through the use of regular content updates.
Beyond that, there is little information out there on what a new GTA game may look like. However, at this point, it is hard to imagine the title straying too far from the themes that gamers have grown to know and love. Any new title in the series is a big event and Rockstar will be hoping to achieve at least a fraction of the success they have enjoyed with GTA V.
Back in 2018, Marketwatch declared that the game should be regarded as the most financially successful media title ever released. The organisation stated that GTA V was estimated to have sold around 90 million units, with the title making in the region of $6 billion in the process.
Arguably one of the key elements behind that game’s huge success has been its longevity and the way that it has remained relevant many years following its original release. For example, as Marketwatch highlighted, around 15 million copies of the game were apparently sold in 2017 – four years after it first launched.
Considering how a new GTA game is expected to have a focus on updates, it is worth noting the impact that they have had on keeping people coming back to the world of GTA V – more specifically, its online component GTA Online.
The power of updates
Probably the most obvious example of the power of updates in GTA is the Diamond Casino and Resort content released last year.
Interest in casino experiences seems to have risen massively in recent years, with online services particularly enjoying major success. According to Statista, the global online gambling market is worth around US$46 billion at the moment and this is set to double in just a few years. Sites are using a range of technologies to bring casino experiences to life, with Betway, for example, offering mobile-friendly services and live casino-style events where players see a real-life croupier via a video link.
Against this backdrop, it makes a degree of sense that a fully-fledged casino landing on GTA Online last year would prove to be a big hit. The update essentially breathed major new life into the platform, with The Hollywood Reporter revealing in August that it generated GTA Online’s biggest day and week in player numbers since its launch in 2013. Perhaps the success of the Diamond Casino and Resort has shown Rockstar just what can be achieved with updates and that may be why they are reportedly looking to use them regularly within a new GTA game.
Grand Theft Auto has come a long way since its earliest days and that is probably best reflected by the mammoth sales figures that GTA V went on to achieve.
Rumours of a new game are very exciting and it is intriguing to see that updates look set to play a major role within it. Hopes will be high that they can help a new title enjoy the longevity and huge success that the last entry in the series has experienced.