As promised, Rockstar returned overnight with its second batch of three screens for Grand Theft Auto V. It’s amazing how exciting a few pictures can be, but surely this is priming up to another full length trailer and the revelation of a release date.
Today’s screens aren’t quite as exciting as the range of transport we got earlier this week, but do showcase some rather interesting “leisure” activities that will be available in the revitalised Los Santos.
Here’s what we saw in today’s new batch of screens.
The Sanchez is back
Dirt bikes have been a big part of the Grand Theft Auto series since the Sanchez was first introduced in Vice City. It was used more on-road back then because of Vice City’s Miami-esque terrain, but it found its true calling in San Andreas where it was used to race up and down Mount Chiliad, among other things.
It’s hardly a surprise. We could have confidently told you the Sanchez would make an appearance without the screenshot, but it’s nice to have an old favourite officially confirmed.
Dirt bike races
This leads us to believe there will be some hectic dirt bike racing; perhaps as a mini-game or even as a side mission. It’ll inevitably also make it as part of the main story, unless our yet-to-be-named hero has some uninspiring reservations about off-road bikes.
Amazingly detailed environment
This is my favourite of the new screens Rockstar has teased us with. Especially after playing San Andreas recently, the detail is spectacular for what appears to be a low-key area of the countryside. If the entire game looks this good, we could get lost for weeks just exploring every nook and cranny.
The Los Santos countryside confirmed
As well as looking fantastic, the second image suggests we’ll get quite a bit of the San Andreas countryside. There’s some debate as to how much of the world outside of Los Santos might make an appearance, and if the city will grow a little as part of its grand redesign.
The glimpse we’ve seen today suggests we’ll be getting a significant amount of the countryside that separated the major cities.
Remember this dude?
Not-Tommy was only one character that starred in the debut trailer for Grand Theft Auto V. He was joined by several others, including two characters that promoted CJ references: one dressed like Kanye West whilst riding a jet ski and another tat-covered bloke running for his life from a pursuing helicopter.
Rumours suggest GTA V may have more than one playable character. Could this parachuting man be one of the characters from the debut trailer? It seems likely, as Ned Luke’s character was subtly placed in the cockpit earlier this week. Don’t be fooled into thinking Rockstar is releasing random screenshots. As one of the smartest marketers in the business, these were very carefully selected for good reason. Rockstar knows what it’s doing, and I’d wager that this man isn’t a random character.
Jumping off Mount Chiliad
Remember doing this?
Base jumping off Mount Chiliad was one of the most rewarding moments of San Andreas; although, if you didn’t fly up there, it was a taxing climb. That’s where the Sanchez will come in handy. At over 2,000 feet high, it was the tallest mountain in the Los Santos area.
The dirt bike screen is certainly reminiscent of the trail leading up to the treacherous mountain’s peak, and if you took the bike instead of the RV off the edge, it required some skillful parachuting as seen in the second screen.
Golf in The Ballad of Gay Tony was rubbish, but I have higher hopes for tennis as a mini-game. Not only because a simple formula might be fun, but because Rockstar has already had success with a dedicated table tennis game, and let’s face it, it’s basically just a bigger version of that, right?
Will every property look this good?
On a side not to the tennis, admire the detail in the house above. Will every property look this good in GTA V, or just the main locations?
This Beverly Hills inspired house is likely to be a key location; perhaps the setting of a defining mission or the property you should aspire to purchase. Cruising around San Andreas in search of real estate was a surprisingly fun way to extend your stay, if you were cashed up at the end of the game.
By Ben Salter
What else did you pick up from Grand Theft Auto V’s ‘Leisure’ screens?