A decade of restless anticipation has finally come to an end, with Rockstar Games having officially unveiled Grand Theft Auto 6 at long last. Of course, we will still be waiting a while to actually get our hands on the game, but with its debut trailer having been released, we’ve now finally got our first real look at what it will look like. Admittedly, the trailer may have been a fairly short one (as is traditional for debut trailer for Rockstar titles), but even so, there’s plenty of interesting details and tidbits to dive into. Here, that’s exactly what we’ll be doing.
Grand Theft Auto 6’s reveal trailer confirms something that leaks have claimed for a while now- that it will once again have multiple playable protagonists. As opposed to GTA 5’s trifecta, however, GTA 6 is narrowing its focus to two main leads- Lucia (who is the series’ first playable female protagonist since the Game Boy version of Grand Theft Auto 2 back in 2000) and Jason, a pair of criminals who’re very much in love. Lucia, it seems, will be fresh out of prison, but as you’d expect from GTA protagonists, her and Jason will quickly be back to their criminal ways again. Interestingly enough, the trailer also suggests that the focus is going to be more on Lucia as the lead than Jason. GTA 5 had Michael, Franklin, and Trevor as its leads, but the story was very much focused on Michael first and foremost, which was reflected in its announcement trailer, and it seems like GTA 6 is following that same pattern.
Something else that GTA 6 leaks have claimed for a while that’s now been officially confirmed is that the game is taking us back to Vice City, the Grand Theft Auto universe’s version of Miami, Florida. Rockstar Games says in its press release that the game will be set in the state of Leonida, which means Vice City won’t be the be all and end all where the map is concerned. The city itself, it seems, will be spread out across a large area, if shots in the trailer are anything to go by. Players will seemingly be visiting multiple environments, but whether that means the map will have multiple larger and smaller cities similar to GTA 5’s map remains to be seen.
As mentioned, though Vice City is clearly going to be a focal point in Grand Thet Auto 6, it won’t be the only thing the map will consist of. Rockstar has confirmed that other areas in the state of Leonida beyond the limits of Vice City itself will also be included, which means we can likely expect something similar to how GTA 5’s map was structured. In the trailer, other than a bevy of urban environments, we also see plenty of beaches, bayou areas, and even several multiple landmasses connected by long-distance bridges, which paints an intriguing picture of how the map will be structured.
Something that Rockstar may not have called explicit attention to but is still abundantly clear in the trailer is just how dense the environments in Grand Theft Auto 6. Rockstar has always been in a class of its own when it comes to crafting believable and authentic open world cities, and we’re seeing plenty of evidence of that already. From the density of things like crowds and vehicles to the sheer variety that can already be seen in the environments, there’s plenty to be impressed by already.
IMMERSION AND SIZE
Rockstar has never been one to hold back with its ambitions for its flagship releases, and though there were some rumblings that Grand Theft Auto 6 might break that pattern, that’s certainly not what the developer’s messaging seems to be conveying. In its press release, the company has said that the upcoming open world title is going to be “the biggest, most immersive evolution of the Grand Theft Auto series yet.” Rockstar Games co-founder Sam Houser has also made similar promises. He says, “Grand Theft Auto 6 continues our efforts to push the limits of what’s possible in highly immersive, story-driven open-world experiences. We’re thrilled to be able to share this new vision with players everywhere.”
Interestingly enough, it seems Grand Theft Auto 6 is placing a larger emphasis on wildlife in the open world than the series has traditionally done in the past. In this area, it seems to be building on what Rockstar did with Red Dead Redemption 2, as plenty of shots in the trailer seem to suggest. In addition to glimpses of wildlife in the aforementioned bayou areas, we also see a couple of shots of crocodiles in city areas, from one climbing out a swimming pool to another entering a convenience store- because it wouldn’t be an accurate depiction of Miami without crocodiles where they aren’t supposed to be, right? It should be interesting to see whether the game’s wildlife systems will be as deep and complex as they were in Red Dead 2.
If Grand Theft Auto 6’s reveal trailer is anything to go by, the game will place quite a bit of emphasis on social media. There are multiple shots in the trailer that show in-universe TikTok and Instagram posts (or whatever GTA 6’s version of real-world social media platforms will be). Of course, this is a series that has often leaned into popular online culture, and done it quite effectively, at that, so we’re curious to see just how baked into the experience social media will be in GTA 6, and whether its integration will be tied only to the story, or if it will also find its way into the gameplay structure.
Heists had a big role to play in Grand Theft Auto 5, and though we don’t know if they’ll take the same form in GTA 6, it does very much seem like they’re returning. We see a couple of shots in the trailer of Lucia and Jason breaking into a store with bandanas on their face and robbing it at gunpoint, while another shot shows them inside a car in the middle of what seems like a police chase, with Lucia holding a bunch of cash in her hand. Those sure seem like heists to us.
When exactly is GTA 6 launching then? Well, we still have a bit of a wait ahead of us. Though many had hoped that the game would release in 2024 (something that some leaks had also claimed), Rockstar Games has confirmed that Grand Theft Auto 6 will be out at some point in 2025. When in 2025? That remains to be seen.
And which platforms will the game be available on? In its press release, Rockstar has stated that in 2025, Grand Theft Auto 6 will release for PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. That means it won’t be available on PC at launch, as has become traditional for Rockstar titles, while as most of us had expected, it also won’t be coming to last-gen consoles.