Written by 9:28 pm GTA V, PC Games, Review

GTA 6 release date estimate, trailer, and latest Rockstar Games news

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When is GTA 6 coming out? Given how many years it takes to create open worlds of the same caliber as GTA 5, it’s no surprise that Rockstar Games has already spent years developing GTA 6. However, like most developers, Rockstar prefers to keep its secrets close to its chest until they’re close to the end of development – and recent reports suggest that the release date is sooner than you might think.

The Grand Theft Auto 6 release date has certainly been a long time coming. Early gameplay leaks of GTA 6 surfaced online last year, along with lines of source code and development footage for the open-world game. There’s been plenty of rumors and speculation surrounding the release date since then, but you can catch up with all the confirmed details surrounding the story and setting in the GTA 6 trailer right here on PCGamesN. Here’s all the latest on the GTA 6 release date, news, and gameplay.

GTA 6 release date estimate

The GTA 6 release date is expected to fall between January and March 2025 for Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5. Rockstar Games revealed a 2025 launch window in the GTA 6 trailer, and a Take-Two investor call narrowed it down to Q1 2025. The GTA 6 PC release is happening later and could be as far as Q1 2026.

While the first GTA 6 trailer confirms the release year is 2025, a follow-up press release from Rockstar PR clarifies that this is a console-specific release date. Referring back to Rockstar Games’ road map for Red Dead Redemption 2, we expect that the GTA 6 PC release date will fall one year later.

Our quarter estimate is based on Take-Two Interactive’s targets for fiscal 2025. In a Take-Two Interactive investor call, chief finance officer Lainie Goldstein stated, “We are positioning our business for a significant inflection point in fiscal 2025 that will culminate in us delivering new record levels of operating performance next year and beyond.”

The company said that “active development for the next entry” is “well underway” and that it will enter its “next phase of growth in fiscal 2025.” While it’s possible that this is subject to change, GTA 6 is unquestionably the property that will allow Take-Two to meet their target of “over $8 billion in net bookings and over $1 billion in adjusted unrestricted operating cashflow.” Take-Two’s stock received a massive jump in share price as a result of the GTA 6 launch details being announced, and we expect that trend to continue as more is revealed.

Rockstar insiders claimed back in 2022 that the GTA 6 launch date was “at least two years away” and provided early details surrounding the crime game‘s leading characters and the return to Vice City.

Around the 20th anniversary of GTA: Vice City’s release date, actor Bryan Zampalla posted a photo of himself on social media with palm trees in the background and a Hawaiian shirt. Zampalla’s rumored ties to GTA 6 caused speculation that this was a tease at GTA 6 news. However, further photos have led many to wonder if the rumored GTA 6 voice actor is simply taking the opportunity to troll vigilant GTA 6 fans.

GTA 6 release date: The official art for the GTA 6 trailer announcement from Rockstar.

GTA 6 trailer

The GTA 6 trailer was released earlier than anticipated due to widespread leaks. It was originally scheduled to drop on Tuesday, December 5, 2023, but Rockstar Games has since made it available to view following the leak.

Rockstar Games president Sam Houser confirmed on the Rockstar Games Twitter account that the GTA 6 trailer would arrive in “early December”.

Trailer 1 confirms the GTA 6 release date year as 2025. It’s approximately 91 seconds in length and verifies long-standing rumors that the series is making a return to Vice City. It features several prominent GTA 6 locations, including the Malibu Club and Ocean Drive. We also catch a glimpse of our two main protagonists, Lucia and Jason, thrown together in unusual circumstances and forced to work together in a modern-day Bonnie and Clyde situation.

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GTA 6 leaks

On September 18, 2022, 90 videos showing off 53 minutes and 26 seconds worth of test footage were leaked in one of the biggest data breaches in history. In the early test footage, we can see the player taking the role of a male and a female character as part of a Bonnie and Clyde-like duo named Jason and Lucia, as reported by Bloomberg earlier that year.

One of the standout clips shows the player controlling Lucia as she and Jason hold up a diner, like the couple at the end of Pulp Fiction. Other videos show Lucia standing on a street corner, watching the traffic go by in broad daylight, while Jason visits a nightclub. Since the footage became public, the GTA 6 leaker has been arrested.

A further GTA 6 leak occurred on TikTok just days prior to the GTA 6 trailer release date, which included a brief glimpse of the map. However, this leak was quickly overshadowed by the GTA 6 trailer itself, which leaked on Twitter less than 24 hours prior to the official release. Rockstar Games responded by releasing the trailer wholesale shortly after the discovery of the leak, stating, “Our trailer has leaked, so please watch the real thing.”

GTA 6 release date: a man on a quad bike is jumping down a hill, with the city in the background during a peaceful, colorful sunset.

GTA 6 news

Despite the major setback of leaked game footage, Rockstar released a statement to clarify that while it is “extremely disappointed” that early footage has leaked, work on “the next Grand Theft Auto will continue as planned”. The developers also assure fans that they “will update everyone again soon and, of course, will properly introduce you to this next game when it is ready”.

At the very least, Rockstar has been developing GTA 6 since the community update on February 4, when Rockstar confirmed that “active development for the next entry in the Grand Theft Auto series is well underway”. Whatever it is, we can rest assured it will be “special”. As part of the studio’s announcement that it was winding down support for Red Dead Online, Rockstar confirmed that more resources were being diverted to “the next entry in the Grand Theft Auto series” and that it wants to ensure the new game “exceed[s] players’ expectations.”

GTA 6 release date: a visual of the GTA 5 map to show how complicated the roads can get. It is not representative of GTA 6's map.

Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick suggests, in a 2019 interview with GamesIndustry.biz, that better development tools and bigger teams could shorten the gaps between game releases. It could also mean that “games may be a bit shorter” while still being robustly supported post-launch.

Mitigating GTA 6 crunch time is another reason the next GTA 6 could be shorter. As Kotaku says in its report in 2020, “One plan that management has laid out for the next game, a new entry in the Grand Theft Auto series, is to start with a moderately sized release (which, by Rockstar’s standards, would still be a large game) that is then expanded with regular updates over time, which may help mitigate stress and crunch”.

Rockstar employees are speaking out about the positive changes the company is making after the scrutiny it attracted following the crunch time over Red Dead Redemption 2.

GTA 6 release date: One of the citizens of Vice City living it up, throwing the horns as men wander the sun-soaked streets behind them.

GTA 6 story

The GTA 6 trailer gave us concrete details surrounding the GTA 6 story. It’s quickly apparent that GTA 6 is set in modern-day Vice City and not the ‘80s, thanks to the proliferation of social media posts that provide quick snapshots of everyday life in Rockstar’s exaggerated version of Miami, including alligator-wrangling, drive-by twerking, and a middle-aged woman in a nightie and slippers wielding two hammers. While the prospect of in-universe social media has appeared previously in GTA 5, this latest representation of Vice City already proves that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

We also get our first proper introduction to Lucia, the first of GTA 6’s two main protagonists, as she appears in orange prison garb, conversing with a prison counselor. When asked why she ended up in prison, she shrugs: “Bad luck, I guess.” It’s unclear whether this cutscene takes place at the beginning or the end of her story, but the GTA 6 story is set to chart the course of her time on the wrong side of the law.

GTA 6 release date: Lucia glances out the back window of the getaway car being driven by Jason, clutching a wad of cash as police cars give chase.

We also get a glimpse of Jason, the second GTA 6 protagonist and Lucia’s partner-in-crime, although he appears to be a less prominent figure in the GTA 6 story than Lucia. The two clearly have an intimate relationship à la Bonnie and Clyde, though their depth of romantic feelings for one another is yet to be revealed. In a brief voiceover, Lucia appears to be addressing him as she declares: “The only way that we get through this is by sticking together. Being a team.”

This teamwork is reflected in a fraught cutscene as they flee the cops in a getaway car, dollar bills clutched in Lucia’s hand. We also see multiple instances of them storming into convenience stores and other buildings, faces obscured and guns raised. One thing’s for sure: this is one crime spree we don’t want to miss.

While leaks have shown off Lucia in the past, rumors were circulating about a playable female character long beforehand. Eagle-eyed users from GTA Forums picked up on some clues, keeping track of some of the voice talent. One actor, Natonia Monet, originally lists on her CV a performance as “Tamara” under a project known by the codename “Fireball”. This profile has since been altered, but as one of their users points out, “Fireball” is the name of a song by Miami-born artist Pitbull. As it turns out, this may not be the main character, as she is named Lucia in the footage

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GTA 6 map speculation

As for the GTA 6 map itself, some fans speculate that if the calculations from the GTA 6 leak were true, this version of Vice City and the surrounding areas could be twice as large as GTA 5’s Los Santos – although a former dev has suggested that the GTA 6 map should be smaller and more densely packed.

Rumors also suggest that the campaign’s map will change through DLC to include new areas or updates to existing ones based on whatever theme the DLC has. It’s not just the campaign map that changes either, as the new GTA Online mode may take place on an ‘evolving map’ that includes alterations and tweaks with every update, much like how the Fortnite map changes with every new season.

GTA 6 release date - a screenshot from GTA 5 showing people hanging out inside an apartment.

GTA 6 gameplay

As for what GTA 6 gameplay we can see from the leaks, there’s not much different from GTA 5. In one of the leaks, we see Lucia – presumably controlled by the player – holding up a diner while trying to keep the hostages from escaping by shooting them in the back as they run. We also see Jason and Lucia evading the cops by stealing one of their cars and driving around the block. Jason also leans out of a moving car while shooting with an assault rifle.

As you might expect, driveable vehicles include GTA 6 cars and boats, while the Metro allows players to effectively travel across the city. In addition, the cars seem to allow players to adjust the wheel’s position, chair angles, and other controls.

Some raw test footage shows more about the movement mechanics, including a cover system, crouching, and crawling. The playable character can also cover their face with their hands or GTA 6 weapons to prevent headshots. At one point in the footage, we see Jason looking in a convenience store while using a new vision ability. It looks similar to how Deadeye in Red Dead Redemption works, but right now, we only see it adjust the color of the footage.

And that’s our roundup of GTA 6 release date rumors and speculation. We still have a long time to wait until the sequel to one of the best PC games arrives. In the meantime, we have compiled a list of GTA 6 cheats that we’d love to see in the sandbox game and some speculation on whether GTA 6 will be on Steam for those of you who prefer playing games on Valve’s platform.