There has been plenty of talk and speculation for years about what a Grand Theft Auto 6 game could look like, what world it would be set in and how it might work. It’s not an industry secret that GTA V is a money-making machine, still making a tidy profit in the seven years it has been out.
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 was recently released and it is a next-gen marvel. The game uses a combination of real-life data (Bing Maps run through a 3D algorithm) combined with real weather and air traffic, you’re flying in a realistic living world.
Now, imagine if that same real-life meets game technology in MSFS 2020 made its way into GTA 6? There have been plenty of rumours and alleged leaks detailing an expansive game that will not be set in one era and transition through different decades as the world changes.
However, there are some key differences between GTA and MSFS 2020. The biggest difference being you can’t get out of your plane in Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 and Grand Theft Auto is based on travelling by foot, car, bike, plane, boat and other means of transport. A living city built using real map data would require a more substantial algorithm to generate something of that scale.
However, there is the possibility that GTA 6 could focus on main cities in the game like Los Santos, Vice City, Liberty City (detailed cities with interiors and interaction like GTA V) and so on, filling in the blanks with algorithmically generated terrain using map data.
There is also the possibility that real-life data is irrelevant in a controversial game like GTA. It has always blended arcade with realism, real, but not too real. Even in GTA V, you had realism mixed with arcade nonsense like outlandish weapons such as the Atomizer or Peyote plants that allowed you to turn into different animals.
If some of the leaks that have come out around GTA VI have an ounce of truth to them, we could be getting weather events (hurricanes, storms, fires, tsunamis, earthquakes) and I think adding in weather in itself would be a nice dose of realism to the GTA world.
I fired up GTA V and played for a couple of hours before I wrote this post and honestly, the game has held up. The casino DLC and other improvements have made this living game stand the test of time and graphically, it still looks impressive for a 7 year old game.
It is clear that Rockstar Games are in no rush, with GTA V being announced for next-gen consoles, clearly the cash cow GTA V is still lucrative and popular enough to release on yet another gaming console. This means GTA V will have been on 3 different generations of gaming console, which has to be some kind of record.