Rockstar is officially working on Grand Theft Auto 6, and we couldn’t be more excited.
At time of writing, it’s been ten years since the release of the last tentpole Grand Theft Auto release (not counting various GTA Online updates and content drops, of course), and that’s far too long as far as we’re concerned.
2018’s Red Dead Redemption 2 gave us the traditional Rockstar-style sandbox we’d been hoping for, but any GTA fan will tell you that Red Dead simply isn’t a replacement for the modern-day crime shenanigans of Grand Theft Auto.
Naturally, like any GTA fan, we’ve put together a wishlist for the series’ next instalment, so here are 12 things we want to see from GTA 6.
1. Multiple cities
We don’t think it’s too much to ask for Rockstar to include more than one city in the next major GTA game.
Since Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas tantalisingly let us briefly visit Liberty City, we’ve dreamed of jumping between two massive explorable locations in a GTA game, and the current console generation’s lightning-fast SSDs could make that dream a reality.
If, as has been rumoured, the next GTA game takes place in Vice City, we’d like the chance to visit either GTA 5’s San Andreas or GTA 4’s Liberty City.
2. A female protagonist
It’s time for the Grand Theft Auto series to move with the times.
The franchise has had a somewhat complicated attitude towards its female characters in the past, and it’s getting increasingly difficult for GTA to hide behind the “satire” defence when it comes to treating women with dignity.
A female playable character would go a long way towards opening up the franchise to new perspectives, and it would shake up the core formula in an exciting way too. Leaks certainly suggest this will be the case!
3. Better storytelling
Don’t get us wrong; we love Grand Theft Auto 5 for its madcap sandbox and fun characters.
However, if you’re a fan of Grand Theft Auto 4’s more sober and intricate storytelling, GTA 5 is lacking something. Certain sequences in the game are laughably tonally misjudged, and the narrative as a whole is arguably much less compelling than its predecessor.
We want to see GTA 6 return to a stronger storytelling focus, and we’re hoping that Rockstar agrees with us on this one.
4. Co-op gameplay
We know that Grand Theft Auto Online allows players to exist together in GTA’s world, but we’ve got bigger dreams.
Imagine if GTA 6, as has been rumoured, features two protagonists. Wouldn’t it be great to hand control of the other protagonist over to a second player, exploring the city together and even taking on story missions with your partner?
This would strongly reinforce the idea of an unstoppable Bonnie and Clyde-style crime duo, and it would make GTA 6’s missions a heck of a lot more fun as well.
5. More interiors
Since Grand Theft Auto 3 brought the series kicking and screaming into 3D, explorable interiors have been on our wishlist.
GTA’s cities often feel impressively like living, breathing entities, but the fact that you can’t wander into (or, indeed, break into) houses and businesses can sometimes make the open world environment feel a little surface-level.
We’re not asking for every single building to be fully explorable (although this would be amazing), but a few more interiors would go a long way towards increasing immersion.
6. Rich, detailed side stories
While GTA 5’s side stories were solid, they didn’t scratch the storytelling itch for us.
We want side missions more akin to those featured in classic GTA games, as well as the ones we got to enjoy in games like GTA 4 and Red Dead Redemption 2.
We’re talking fully-voiced, well-rounded side characters that add something meaningful to the game’s storytelling, as well as potentially handing over a tangible reward for going through their mission sequence.
7. More mission freedom
The return of the immersive sim genre has shown us that there’s another way when it comes to designing missions for open-world games.
Grand Theft Auto has always had a strange dichotomy at its core; it’s very open-ended when it comes to exploration, but its missions tend to be highly linear.
We want to see much more freedom in missions, with multiple potential routes for achieving your goal depending on your play style.
8. More realistic police
The police in GTA games have always been something of a joke, and not necessarily in the way Rockstar intended.
To put it simply, the police response to player crimes and activities hasn’t really evolved with the times, and we want to see a more realistic police implementation in GTA 6.
For instance, it might be interesting if the police tracked crimes the player had committed, rather than just ignoring them as soon as they move outside of an arbitrary circle on the minimap.
9. A more grounded approach
In our opinion, GTA 6 needs to leave the wacky comedy storytelling and tone to Saints Row.
The series is arguably at its best when it brings things down to the ground level and focuses on the struggles of its characters. As such, controversial as it might be, we want to see some of the more outlandish elements toned down a little.
It’s time, for instance, to move away from the childish pseudo-satire of names like “Tw@” and build a slightly more realistic world.
10. Major side activities
The Like a Dragon (formerly Yakuza) games often feature larger side activities that could almost be spun off into their own games.
GTA could benefit enormously from its own version of this. Imagine managing your own crime empire, for instance, issuing orders to lieutenants and deciding how best to run your day-to-day operations.
This would give a stronger sense of your rise through the criminal ranks, and it would also be a nice downtime activity after a high-octane mission.
11. Less of a focus on GTA Online
We know this one is a wishlist item in every sense of the word, because GTA Online is highly lucrative for Rockstar, and the studio isn’t about to abandon its cash cow.
However, in our eyes, the focus on GTA Online has come at a cost; the single-player game has been all but forgotten, and we think that’s a real shame.
We want to see Rockstar spin GTA Online off into its own entity for GTA 6, allowing a separate team to focus on creating meaningful single-player content. Speaking of which…
12. Single-player DLC
We’re still baffled as to why GTA 5 never received any single-player DLC.
The stories of Michael, Franklin, and Trevor might have been wrapped up with the conclusion of GTA 5 (although that’s an entirely separate debate), but there were still plenty of stories to be told.
For GTA 6, we want to see large-scale single-player DLC that significantly expands the stories of the characters and perhaps even introduces new ones.