A confederate flag has been censored in Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition, raising questions of other changes.
The character Phil Cassidy has appeared across Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Grand Theft Auto III, and more. The main claims to be a military veteran who served in the Vietnam war, while other characters claim he denied entry into the army. The character has several stereotypical features of a “redneck” (and is even called as such in his VCBI Crime Tree Record).
In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City the character wears a black shirt with a Confederate flag on it. However, players have noticed the this has been replaced with a skull in a trailer for Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – Definitive Edition. You can find it in our prior coverage of the game’s announcement, and the moment you see Cassidy’s shirt at 0:33.
The Confederate flag’s usage in modern times can be controversial at times. Some consider it a symbol denouncing the US government as it currently stands, or representing racist or white supremacist ideals.
Some felt that removing the flag from Cassidy was better, making it easier to like the character. It should be noted Cassidy is an illegal arms dealer who makes highly-explosive moonshine, resorts to murder to improve his “business,” and has a deep loathing of liberals and communists to a paranoid degree. He was rejected from service due to “drunkenness and an unsuitable temperament for combat.”
One alleged 4Chan user felt it showed the developer’s motives were to remove scenes and imagery now deemed controversial. Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy was delisted from Steam and console stores prior to release.
The Grand Theft Auto series has been considered the poster-child for controversial video games. Thanks to its depiction of sex, drugs, violence, and biting mockery and critique of many cultures, beliefs, and backgrounds; nothing was off limits. The censorship may also be surprising to some, as such moves to avoid offence are typically with minority groups in mind.
As one of the users who posted the comparison image stated “in a trilogy that laughs in the face of political correctness, what else have they altered to please a modern audience? Radio ads/discussions? Character dialogue ? Objectives?” One of our own readers may have spotted something.
S0ldierX4 noted that a sign featuring a woman had seemingly censored her cleavage (at 0:23). However, it may be other elements of the sign obscuring the cleavage. Such censorship would seem pointless, considering players can hire prostitutes and hear them “conducting business,” along with some female characters having large breasts and cleavage. We shall keep you informed as we learn more.
Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition launches November 11th for Windows PC (via the Rockstar Games Launcher), Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.
Additional Images: Grand Theft Auto Fandom Wiki