Grand Theft Auto 5 is one of the biggest games of all time. Not only is the title incredibly successful, but it launched to critical acclaim. Yes, the constant re-releases and overpriced online content have hurt the game’s legacy a bit. But overall, it remains a fantastic open-world adventure.
This is why even though it was released all the way back in 2013, it is still as relevant as ever and has managed to maintain a player base for years. During that time, the world has learned plenty of things about the title, from silly backstage stories to eye-catching records. As such, here is a collection of some of the most interesting facts about the game.
Updated January 21, 2022 By Ben Jessey: There aren’t many games that have managed to maintain their relevancy as well as GTA 5. Despite releasing all the way back in 2013 – even before the Xbox One and PS4 hit the market – people still play and talk about the game a lot.
Over the years, plenty of information has come out about the making of the title. We put some of the more interesting facts on this list. And now, we’ve returned to the piece to add several more that will intrigue the fanbase.
9 It Was The First GTA Game To Have An Original Score
For each GTA game, Rockstar usually licenses a bunch of songs to use in trailers and for the in-game radio. This remains the case in Grand Theft Auto 5, but there are also plenty of non-licensed tracks, too.
These songs are usually non-diegetic, meaning they don’t come from the radio or other in-game sources. They appear during key gameplay moments, like when Chop is searching the boxcars in an early mission. While this is quite common in gaming, GTA 5 is the first Grand Theft Auto game to do it, as co-writer Dan Houser revealed to The Guardian.
8 The Developers Hired Real Gang Members To Voice NPCs
To make Los Santos feel as real of a place as possible, the developers added voices to a lot of the NPCs you see around the city. Therefore, as LS is home to a bunch of different gangs, plenty of their members have voices.
Lazlow Jones, who is not only an in-game character but also serves as a writer and producer on the GTA series, once revealed something interesting about several of their voice actors. He claims they hired real-life gang members to provide vocals for some NPCs. And they allowed them to go off-script to make it feel as authentic as possible.
7 Michael’s Voice Actor Was Accidently Hit With A Bat On Set
While making GTA 5, the main voice actors didn’t just sit in a sound booth and deliver their lines. They did full motion capture for the game, which made all their movements feel more real. In one scene, though, things may have gotten too real for Michael’s voice actor, Ned Luke. This is because he ended up getting hit by a makeshift bat while filming.
This occurred when he was mo-capping the scene where Michael meets Martin Madrazo. In the sequence, Madrazo gives the protagonist an example of who he is dealing with by striking him with a metal baseball bat. The person mo-capping Madrazo accidentally struck poor Ned Luke in the funny bone.
Shawn Fonteno does an excellent job voicing Franklin throughout GTA 5 and helps make the character one of the best in the game. It seems having the ability to bring a Grand Theft Auto protagonist to life is something that runs in his family, as his cousin managed to do the same.
The cousin in question goes by the name Young Maylay, who lent his tones to Carl ‘CJ’ Johnson in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Fonteno revealed this information in various interviews and panels in the build-up to GTA 5’s release, most notably during New York Comic Con.
5 A Modder Received $10,000 From Rockstar For Fixing Load Times
For a long time, the PC version of the game had a significant load problem. Anytime you tried to switch to the multiplayer mode, it took way too long. However, a modder figured out a fix to significantly decrease the time.
In response, Rockstar made the fix themselves and included it in the game’s next update. The developers didn’t forget about the modder who discovered the solution, though. They mentioned the modder in the patch notes and paid them $10,000. It might not be the flashiest mod for the game, but it benefitted everyone, including the modder’s bank account.
4 Ned Luke Put On Weight To Play Michael
Actors often transform their bodies for roles. For example, most people who get hired to play a Marvel superhero or supervillain get jacked to fit the look. As it’s mostly done for visual reasons, it doesn’t happen as often in the voice-acting world.
But while speaking to USA Today, Ned Luke said that he put on a few pounds to mocap Michael. He did so to deal with the physicality involved with the role. As a bonus, it made him look a bit more like the character.
3 GTA 5 Was The Most-Watched Game On Twitch In 2021
Grand Theft Auto 5 was originally released back in 2013. So, eight years later, you would expect the game to have fallen out of relevancy. Yet, that didn’t occur with this juggernaut of a title, as it was still the most-watched game on Twitch in 2021.
Rockstar’s constant stream of new GTA online content did play some part in achieving the feat. However, likely the biggest reason Twitch viewers spent a combined 3.1 billion combined hours watching GTA content was the popularity of GTA RP. This is where people join a dedicated GTA server and roleplay.
2 There’s A Real Life Version Of The Most Iconic Franklin And Lamar Scene
While there are many memorable cutscenes in GTA 5, one is more famous than the rest. This is, of course, the iconic argument between Franklin and Lamar, where the latter blasts his friend’s hairstyle.
Shortly after the game’s release, the hilarious scene turned into a meme, and fans made many different versions of it. However, the stand-out one is the live-action version. This is because it features the actual voice actors of the two characters – Shawn Fonteno and Slink Johnson – reprising their roles.
1 GTA 5 Is More Successful Than A Few Popular Gaming Series
It’s well-known that Grand Theft Auto 5 is successful, but some people don’t realize just how ridiculously successful it is. In February 2022, it was discovered that GTA 5 had outsold every game in the Assassin’s Creed series combined to that point, according to ScreenRant.
This is also the case with the Resident Evil series, and all the Final Fantasy games aren’t that far in front of GTA 5, either. Those are three famous series that are successful in their own right. For a single title to outsell two of those series and nearly the third is mind-blowing.