Grand Theft Auto VI at least 2 years away, will have female protagonist

PHOTO: Twitter/RockstarGames

After the phenomenal sensation that is Grand Theft Auto V, it's only natural that fans are waiting eagerly for Grand Theft Auto VI (GTA VI) to drop, hopefully, sooner than later. That, unfortunately, is unlikely to happen, in light of new details revealed in a report on developer Rockstar Games.

The write-up by Bloomberg details the changing culture at the company - previously panned for its frat-boy, misogynistic practices, difficult work environment, and long overtime hours (known as "crunch") - and how it may impact the development of its upcoming project. Most notably, the game will feature a playable female protagonist, which is a first for the series.

The woman is reportedly a Latina and will be one of a pair of leading characters in a story influenced by the bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde. Developers are also putting in extra care to not make jokes about marginalised groups, in contrast with previous GTA titles.

GTA VI will additionally be set in a fictionalised version of Miami and the surrounding areas, scrapping original plans for a world that covered many locations throughout North and South America.

This change in location was specifically made to give a more realistic scope for developers, so the burden of research and ideation can be eased without the constant need for overtime. These adjustments, however, have inevitably resulted in extremely slow progress, with the release of GTA VI expected to be at least two years away, despite being in development since 2014.

Take-Two, Rockstar Games' parent company, says that it expects the game to launch sometime in 2023 or 2024, but no official date has been firmed up yet. When GTA VI finally releases, development work will continue with new missions and cities planned for the years ahead.

If anything, at least Rockstar's aim to better itself with new and healthier policies is encouraging, and hopefully, more companies (ahem, Blizzard Entertainment) can follow in its footsteps.

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This article was first published in Geek Culture.