GTA design head offers rationale behind ditching single-player DLC

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,334   +535
Staff member

One of the most common complaints regarding Grand theft Auto V is that once Rockstar saw the cash cow it had in GTA Online, it completely abandoned the single-player mode. Indeed, the multiplayer component of GTA V has netted the game maker hundreds of millions in revenue since the game’s launch.

Imran Sarwar, Rockstar's director of design, recently told Game Informer that it was not just about the money. Sarwar explained that the team did initially have content planned for the story mode of GTA V but several things prevented the developers from following through with those plans.

First, there was the next-gen version. It took the team more than a year to port GTA V to newer consoles and then a bit more time to tweak the code, fix bugs and tune graphics. Needless to say, the port to upgraded hardware consumed considerable resources.

Additionally, by the time they had the game satisfactorily polished for next-gen, GTA Online was starting to gain momentum. Seeing the potential for the online aspect of the game, Rockstar decided to focus on it to make it a fun experience for players that had finished the main story. These efforts, of course, ate up even more time and resources.

By the time Rockstar reached the point that GTA Online was living up to expectations, it was high time to start seriously working on Red Dead Redemption 2. Development on RDR2 had been slower than they had wanted and fans were getting restless. It made sense to step up production on the beloved western shooter.

“The combination of these three factors means, for this game, we did not feel single-player expansions were either possible or necessary.”

It all boiled down to matters of priority. Sarwar said that “with GTA V, the single-player game was absolutely massive and very, very complete. It was three games in one.”

They felt that while they did want to expand the story, it ultimately was not necessary. The story was already epic so other things beat it out on the priority list. Sarwar insists that it was not a matter of the company favoring the online model more than single-player stories. In fact, it is just the contrary.

“As a company, we love single-player more than anything, and believe in it absolutely,” he concluded. “For storytelling and a sense of immersion in a world, multiplayer games don’t rival single-player games.”

He added that the team would love to add additional single-player content to games in the future; it just wasn't in the cards for Grand Theft Auto V.

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ikesmasher

Posts: 3,050   +1,368
Of course they saw "potential" in gta online. It would take me a week of 2-3 hours a day of VERY tedious grinding to even start buying content from the last 3 updates without shark cards.
 
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ZackL04

Posts: 639   +395
Ive never bought a shark card.....

I dont think they abandoned anything. They drop FREE online content ALL THE TIME.

Rockstar is the best period, always a day 1 purchase, cant wait for RDR2
 
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yRaz

Posts: 3,286   +2,682
GTAV single player took twice as long as what I spent on my first Skyrim character. I easily sunk 100+ hours in GTAV single player.

It was an amazing game and offered far more for $60 than most devs over for $120 after DLC. Seriously, quit complaining about it. Let's be thankful that they keep releasing free content for GTA online instead of killing the player base by charging for DLC.

The reaction to rockstar over DLC is one of the most rediculous thing I've ever seen. First the gaming community rages about the new DLC trend and then bashes Rockstar for not releasing DLC!

I really am starting to hate the gaming community.
 
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IAMTHESTIG

Posts: 1,868   +900
GTA 5 single player was massive, and I'd agree it was complete. To top it off, the PC port was solid and well optimized. I've very happy with it. That being said, we were promised single player DLC's so surely you can understand why some of us would be sad. It just feels like there is no love for those of us who really don't care for the MP experience. Hell, even just adding the vehicles for us to obtain in SP would be a wonderful gesture.

Now here is to hoping for a RDR2 on PC, and an equally well made GTA 6 on PC.
 
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SirDigby

Posts: 594   +240
TechSpot Elite
I never felt that GTA V needed extra content in the form of DLC, singleplayer was good, I never really committed to GTA Online but it was fun with friends. I would have liked to play more but there's nothing there that makes me want to stay.
If only they'd push the online content into singleplayer as well (vehicles and weapons mainly), then I'd be really happy but I'm content as is....
I mean, Rockstar gotta give other game devs SOME chance at making a comparably good game. :p
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 6,943   +5,224
If they don't want to develop the single player game any more, the open it up to developers to build their own and share them. Try that for a year and see how many are developed .... that is you REAL measurement of the popularity. Rockstar has turned into a cash hungry talking head and his explanation is pure baloney. ANYONE that knows even the basic's about marketing knows you satisfy the entire community, not just the cash generators. Go to your grocery and see how many items they have "on sale", actually taking a loss on to keep people coming back again and again, knowing in the long run it will be more than profitable.
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,281
This is lip service if I've ever heard but it but I'll agree on his point about the single player mode being more than sufficient for most. After almost two years I'm still trying to complete it and I'll only consider it completed once I see '100% complete' in the stats checklist. Once that's done I'll put the game aside. I couldn't be less interested in the on line mode. I haven't even clicked on that option yet, and it's highly unlikely I'll ever do so.
 

Skjorn

Posts: 539   +378
GTAV single player took twice as long as what I spent on my first Skyrim character. I easily sunk 100+ hours in GTAV single player.
No idea how you managed that. SP takes on average 47 hours to complete Main Story + Extras. It was way easier to spend 100+ hours in Skyrim for me than GTA V SP.
They drop FREE online content ALL THE TIME.
Do they really though? With the prices inflating the way they are on in-game items its almost forcing you to buy a shark card.. The best car on day one was a flat 1mil. Now they have a similar car for 2.5mil. Planes are upwards of 5mil and going up. The yacht was like 6-8mil and does literally nothing. They hiked the prices on items because people were duplicating cars to sell...The game has literally become everything I don't want in GTA. My favorite days of GTA were the IV days. Back when you could pick someone's litter off the street throw it at them and start a fight, back when the cops would actually chase you with 1 star and had a real sense of AI and not this bulldozing crap they do now. GTA multiplayer was so fun on IV, cops and robbers, they had races too. But it wasn't all about who could grind the most or buy the most shark cards, it was just fun. The current GTAO could be a lot funner if it wasn't ALL about the grind.
I honestly fear that RDR2 will be a copy of GTAO just westernized.
GTA IV >> GTA V
 
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ZackL04

Posts: 639   +395
No idea how you managed that. SP takes on average 47 hours to complete Main Story + Extras. It was way easier to spend 100+ hours in Skyrim for me than GTA V SP.


Do they really though? With the prices inflating the way they are on in-game items its almost forcing you to buy a shark card.. The best car on day one was a flat 1mil. Now they have a similar car for 2.5mil. Planes are upwards of 5mil and going up. The yacht was like 6-8mil and does literally nothing. They hiked the prices on items because people were duplicating cars to sell...The game has literally become everything I don't want in GTA. My favorite days of GTA were the IV days. Back when you could pick someone's litter off the street throw it at them and start a fight, back when the cops would actually chase you with 1 star and had a real sense of AI and not this bulldozing crap they do now. GTA multiplayer was so fun on IV, cops and robbers, they had races too. But it wasn't all about who could grind the most or buy the most shark cards, it was just fun. The current GTAO could be a lot funner if it wasn't ALL about the grind.
I honestly fear that RDR2 will be a copy of GTAO just westernized.
GTA IV >> GTA V
I hear you, but they have it built so you keep interest in the game, you shouldnt have easy access to all the good stuff right away
 

ikesmasher

Posts: 3,050   +1,368
I hear you, but they have it built so you keep interest in the game, you shouldnt have easy access to all the good stuff right away
hard to keep interesting in spending 4 hours a day repeating the same heist, mission, or tedious public-session scavenging that can be ruined by one jerk with a military vehicle
 
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Skjorn

Posts: 539   +378
You mean you don't get sucked into multiple hour long murderous rampages, resulting in 0% progress made?
That costs a lot of money in V. But in IV that was my favorite thing to do next to cops n robbers. Ragdolls and AI were funner and much tougher in IV. A rampage in V just feels like all the peds are fragile 101-yr olds. In IV they put up a good fight, not this one and done crap they do in V. Rampages in V are even boring man...
I hear you, but they have it built so you keep interest in the game, you shouldnt have easy access to all the good stuff right away
When I rob the biggest bank in West Hollywood I expect to walk away with more than 1.25mil of basiclly only actors money. The game is a cheap grind and the missions pay like Im an illegal immigrant scrubbing toilets 9-5.