Preview

Grand Theft Auto V

GTA V: Dissecting The Trailer
by Matt Bertz on Nov 02, 2011 at 08:26 AM
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Developer: Rockstar North
Release:
Rating: Mature
Platform: PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360

How much information about Rockstar's new game can we extract from the first teaser trailer? You'd be surprised.

The trailer may not have shed light on new gameplay mechanics or who the game's protagonist will be, but the brief glimpse we got of the game gave us more than enough content with which to speculate. Here's what caught our eye.

Back To San Andreas

In Grand Theft Auto games, the cities are as much of the stars as the characters. Much like GTA IV's Liberty City captured the essence of New York City, judging by this trailer it looks like Rockstar is bringing the same impressive level of detail to making a city that looks and feels just like Los Angeles. The majority of the trailer takes place in Los Santos, the first city players encountered in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Though some city districts return from the last game (including the affluent Hollywood doppleganger Vinewood), it looks like Rockstar is exploring new areas as well. The trailer introduced us to the Pleasure Pier on Vespucci beach, which looks to be a play off Venice Beach. We also saw a highway sign for Little Seoul, the GTA equivalent of Koreatown.

And The Countryside

At this juncture we have no idea if GTA V expands its setting to Los Venturas and San Fiero like San Andreas did, but we do know that there looks to be ample room to roam the countryside. The trailer showed off an impressive mountain range, a vineyard staffed by immigrant workers, and a large expanse of rolling hills littered with wind turbines and dirt roads. If the script leaks are correct, this may be where the pot evangelist grows his cannabis crops.

Flight Is Back

Many fans cried foul when Rockstar failed to include controllable planes in Grand Theft Auto IV. Judging by this trailer, they return in a big way for GTA V. Rockstar featured three aircraft in the footage – a crop duster, a charter plane, and a fighter jet that looks very similar to the Hydra VTOL in San Andreas.

Fun Vehicles

In the trailer alone, we saw a sexy convertible sports car, a jet ski, and a blimp hovering over Los Santos. Blimp killing spree? Where do I sign up?!

Rockstar's Trademark Sense of Humor

No one in video games is better at lampooning American culture than Rockstar. The signs visible in the trailer indicate that the company's sense of humor is still alive and well. A real estate development of downtown condos is called the Mile High Club, the pest control van the characters use as cover for an assault features the slogan "Putting the FU in fumigate," the postal van slogan says, "We aim not to lose it," and the police car has "Obey and survive" on the side. Rockstar even sends up the legendary In-n-Out Burger with an Up-n-Atom Burger truck.

New Side Activities?

In Grand Theft Auto IV, players could kill time by going bowling, hitting up the strip club, playing pool, throwing darts, attending a comedy show, or even by sitting in your dingy apartment watching television. Three possibilities for new side activities the GTA V trailer introduces are yoga, hiking, and golf. Golf, you say? The Ballad of Gay Tony featured a mission where Luis hit golf balls at a union official at a Liberty City driving range, so they have already explored the mechanics. Given how seriously the company takes these side missions (the poker in Red Dead Redemption was better than most games dedicated to the card game) I wouldn't put it past them. The inclusion of yoga could also mark the return of body maintenance that so many people loved in San Andreas. We also noticed a dog on the beach boardwalk – a first for the series. Could Rockstar be introducing pets?

Amazing Scenery

Rockstar wowed us with their amazing skies in Red Dead Redemption, and it looks like the team is carrying over this technology to GTA V.

The Struggling Economy

Los Santos isn't all about glam and glitz. Well removed from the luxurious life of Vinewood residents are areas ravaged by homelessness and the struggling American economy. In multiple shots, the GTA V trailer featured homeless people lining the walls of an underpass, tent towns, and a character putting up a foreclosure sign.

The World's Oldest Profession

It wouldn't be a GTA game without a healthy presence of the ladies of the night, and they make their obligatory appearance outside a liquor store in a rougher side of town.

Multiple Characters?

Both Red Dead Redemption and Grand Theft Auto IV told stories of a character who tried to escape their past, only to get pulled back into their violent trades. Judging from the voice over on the GTA V trailer, this looks to be the case for this game as well. But we also noticed several characters making recurring appearances in the trailer. Could this mean Rockstar is introducing a branching narrative with multiple playable characters?

We look forward to finding out more about Grand Theft Auto V in the coming months.