Hello, pretend and prospective digital criminals! Fancy open-world crime playground Grand Theft Auto V launches very, very soon, and for the next couple of days we’re going to be cramming news, screenshots, reviews, snippets of insight and maybe some silly gifs into this here article.
So join us as we prepare to set Los Santos on fire. We’ll bring the explosives.
17:10 – Matt:I’ve spent most of the day playing GTA Online, the massively ambitious MMO-like multiplayer experience that comes bolted on the side of GTA V. Far more than just a few multiplayer games, it’s a vast open world where you can become your own crime lord. I bought an exceptionally flashy penthouse apartment, and spent the sunny afternoon leaving other players choking on my tyre smoke, or coughing up blood from bullet wounds I put in their fleshy bits. It’s great fun. You should read my review-in-progress to see my detailed thoughts on it, then go play some yourself.
11:02 – Jeremy:Somebody’s come out with a GTA V FOV mod that removes the official slider’s limits. But there’s a question mark over whether or not it’ll get you banned.
00:00 – Fraser:I’ve been mucking around with the GTA V video editor.
17:31 – Matt:I’ve been playing GTA V for most of the day, and can finally start talking about what I think. Read the first part of my review here. Also: please gaze on this complimentary selfie. It looks a bit like me, if I had the money to buy fancy suits. (Yes I know you can remove the camera grid. I do now. I didn’t then.)
16:38 – Jules: It looks like GTA V is the most successful non-Valve game to be released on Steam. Ever.
15:37 – Jules: Steve’s been out scouring Vine and discovered this gem:
Finally an excuse to go and buy a fancy backlit keyboard.
14:07 – Jules:GTA V’s currently the third most played game on Steam with more than 230,000 people diving into Los Santos. It’ll have to do better than that to pass Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
I wonder how much that number will jump when it gets to 5 o’clock and it stops just being the people who skipped work playing.
13:16 – Jules: If, like me, you’re computer struggles to run GTA V then you may not want to watch this video of the game running at 4K resolutions with all the graphics settings switched to ultra. It’s certainly making me jealous:
12:50 – Jules:To those streamers out there, learn from MrBossFTW’s mistake and don’t stream your GTA activation code before applying it to your Rockstar Social Club Account:
Well guess I’m going to be known as that guy who got his GTA V Steam key stolen on stream 😛
— Ross (@MrBossFTW) April 14, 2015
11:38 – Jules:Try to keep it together,someone’s spotted a ghost in GTA V.
10:37 – Jules: Jeremy’s started a list of all the major known bugs and fixes. Check it out if you’re having any issues.
10:23 – Jules: While Matt tries to transfer my GTA install to his computer I’m downloading the Windows 10 technical beta to see if I can’t get GTA running at better than 25fps.
09:54 – Matt:On the bright side though, before the game crashed I did get to see this cat. I can confirm the fur technology in GTA V is top notch.
09:49 – Matt:My download of GTA may have finished, but the woes are far from over. I don’t know if Rockstar’s servers being hammered is at fault, or my own internet connection, or just bad luck, but my download is corrupted and causes the game to crash to desktop repeatedly. I bought from GMG, which measn you have to use Rockstar’s bespoke client rather than Steam. It’s a system that doesn’t have the ‘verify files’ function like Steam does, which means the only way to solve a corrupt install is to re-download. All 60GB of it…
09:01 – Jules: Rockstar’s discovered a problem with Windows usernames which prevents GTA V from running. Basically, if your username contains any non-alphanumeric characters you might run into problems. Valve have come up with a workaround, though, and Rockstar are working on a patch to fix the bug.
In other news. I have found my first cat.
08:53 – Jules: Over on the PC Gaming Wiki the team have pulled together all the information you need to know what features and requirements GTA V requires. As bugs crop up that will also be the place to go to find fixes.
08:31 – Jules: GTA’s feeling pretty sluggish on my PC. It’s refresh rate’s staying steady at about 25fps which is causing real trouble when driving super cars. I’ve installed the most up to date driver my PC can support but I think Windows Vista’s is holding me back from the latest driver.
For comparing specs, I’m running an i7-3770k @ 3.50 GHz, two AMD Radeon 7800s in crossfire, 16GB RAM, and Windows Vista.
I might try and install the Windows 10 technical beta if I can’t GTA running smoother.
08:28 – Jules: The Steam reviews are starting to pile in. I feel these two encapsulate Grand Theft Auto on the PC:
08:16 – Matt:I’ve been downloading it since 2pm yesterday on a fibre broadband connection. It’s still a gig away from completion. I’ve never seen a better argument for physical media in my life.
07:47 – Jules:There’s tension in the Purslow/Benson household today. Matt’s copy of GTA’s still downloading while I’m already diving into the campaign. I’ll give you some of my thoughts as I get past the tutorial.
02:05 – Fraser:Okay, it’s past 2, and I’m going to lie to you and tell you I’m going to bed, when I’m actually going to be playing more GTA V. We’ll be back tomorrow/later today to fill your head with words, pictures and ridiculous gifs from Los Santos.
02:02– Fraser: Oh yeah, and here’s my rig: Intel i5-3570K @3.40 GHz, 8 GB of RAM, GeForce GTX 970, Windows 7. With the 970 having almost 4GB of RAM, my setup doesn’t seem to struggle with anything GTA V throws its way while playing at 1080p.
01:58 – Fraser: I spent a bit of time messing with the settings, and to my surprise, I really struggled to get the game to run at less than 60 fps. I’ve currently got all the options cranked right up, including TXAA and the softest shadows. The only thing I haven’t turned all the way up is the other shadow option, shadow quality. It uses up more VRAM than any other setting.
01:50 –Fraser: So I’ve been playing for about an hour now, and I did remember to take a few snaps.
You can see the gallery of these and more in their original size here.
00:50 – Fraser:And we’re in! Expect screenshots soon.
00:33 – Fraser:You can’t fool us, Steam. We’ve been on holiday before. We know that it only takes 10 seconds to unpack stuff. Just empty the suitcase onto the bed and head to the bar.
00:10 – Fraser:I wonder what could possibly be causing this?
23:57 – Fraser:Steam is definitely doing something.
23:50 – Fraser:Only 10 minutes to go, if everything goes to plan. Even my partner in crime, Max the Labradoodle, is getting into the spirit of things. He’s licking his lips in anticipation.
23:45 – Tim:While I Was At Rockstar Playing GTA V on PC I had a fiddle with that editor. I shot down a helicopter using the railgun and then spent about an hour making a small action replay of it in very, very slow motion. I am not exactly Michael Mann, but I was relatively proud of what I made. Especially because I managed to follow a policeman’s face as he fell to his death. Videogames.
23:40 – Fraser:Not much to it, Rob? It’s Trevor looking his very best, like a drunk Forrest Gump, and it’s pretty slick. I can’t wait to get my hands on the editor and make absolutely nothing of worth because I’m a bit rubbish at all that stuff, if I’m honest.
23:30 – Rob:Ah, the first film made with the video editor is up on YouTube. A special commission by Rockstar, for 8-Bit Bastard. Not much to it, just shows off some of the editing and effects possible with the editor.
23:00 – Rob: I would like one of these, please.
22:20 – Fraser:Rob’s wrong, of course. The right answer is the GTA documentary film that the Beeb is making.
22:15 – Rob: All right, now that I’m thinking about Collateral… what are the top 5 LA crime movies ever made? My list, in no particular order.
- Double Indemnity
- The Usual Suspects
Okay, I see you raising your had. What’s that? The Usual Suspects isnt’t about LA? It’s mostly set in New York?
Great point, but if you look at it, The Usual Suspects is about of working-class New York criminals who get pulled into the machinations of international crimelord Keyser Soze. Then they all go to Southern California to do jobs for him, and nobody ever makes it home alive. And that is the East Coast perspective, and especially the New York perspective, on LA. It’s an alien country, unnatural. A soft and seductive trap.
22:00 – Fraser:Can I, using willpower alone, transform these console copies of GTA V into a real PC version. Find out later tonight.
21:30 – Fraser:So it’s half nine, and that means we’ve still got two and a half hours to wait. If… IF it unlocks on Steam at the right time. I’ve been staring at this bloody thing for so long that I need Nick to stand over me, applying eyedrops.
21:20 – Fraser: Of course, this might not work if I’m playing as Franklin. The cops in Los Santos… well, they’re pretty racist.
21:17 – Fraser: Then I’ll make something explode. You’ve always got to make something explode.
21:15 – Fraser: So here’s the new plan: Walking into people in GTA is fun. It’s even more fun in first-person, where you can see there’s perplexed, angry faces. I’m going to infuriate as many Los Santos residents as I can, bumping into them until they just flip out and attempt to halt my inconsiderate jostling. I’m going to make them chase me to a police station, and watch as LS’ finest bring down the full weight of the law onto their fragile faces.
21:10 – Fraser: Yeah, my plans sound positively dull in comparison now. Is it too late to change? No? Okay, great.
21:05 – Jules: Rob’s thing sounds awesome. Sign me up for that, too.
21:02 – Rob: Except coyotes probably never appear downtown in Los Santos because they are programmed not to be there. So instead I’d probably just run my stolen cab into some cop cars until I exploded.
21:00 – Rob: I would re-enact Tom Cruise’s murderous itinerary in Collateral, taking a hijacked cab from location to location over the course of one long night. At each place I would kill someone, or perhaps a few people, and then I would drive around Los Santos musing about the nature of work, dreams deferred, and the painful isolation of modern urban life. I’d catch a glimpse of a coyote walking downtown and wonder, briefly, “Is she me? Am I her? Am I just an anachronism, a leftover hunter loose in a world I no longer understand?”
20:59 – Rob: Here’s what I would do…
20:49 – Tim: That’s after I’ve spent about an hour fiddling with detail options. Oh, and pro-tip to everyone reading: you can select which camera it uses for each different play mode. So: on foot you can default to first person, shifting to third in cover, and dashboard for driving.
20:46 – Fraser:Just a regular day then?
20:45 – Tim: Get to the top of Mount Chilliad, wait until morning, and then float as far down to the beach as I can. Then probably cycle back up and murder some hikers.
20:40 – Matt: I played GTA V back when it released on Xbox 360, so in regards to story and the world of Los Santos I’ve kind of ‘seen it all’. I’m a resident these days, not a tourist. So I’m going to be on the look out for everything that’s changed thanks to the power of the PC. I’m going to experience the story entirely in the new first-person view to see how this changes my relationship with the world. And of course, getting through a few heists is very high on my priorities list.
20:35 – Jules: I’ve avoided playing anything of the new GTA till it came out on PC so I’m going to dive into the single player first and see what it’s all about.
20:30 – Fraser: I’ve played GTA V on PS3 and PS4, so I’m not all that interested in the single-player storyline. I’ll be faffing around with options to make it look as pretty as possible, then I’ll probably spend the rest of the time fooling around with the video editor with breaks for tasteful selfies.
20:25 – Fraser:Let’s imagine the very near future, where we have our greasy mitts on GTA V at last. What are you, our lovely readers, going to do first?
20:10 – Fraser: And here’s some other GTA-related stuff we’ve written about today:
20:05 – Fraser: To get us started, here’s what Tim made of his time with the game:
20:00 – Fraser: Everyone ready to stay up past their bedtime and wait for GTA to unlock?