Brace yourself: a new Grand Theft Auto 6 is on the way. Though it doesn't even have an official title yet—Rockstar Games refers to it as "the next Grand Theft Auto"—the first trailer will be revealed in December.
Thanks to some pretty big GTA 6 leaks in 2022 that included a bunch of video clips, we know a few things about the game already. It looks like it's set in Vice City, it appears to be set in modern day (after the events of GTA 5), and will have two protagonists to swap between, a man and a woman.
Beyond that, it's anyone's guess, and no one enjoys guessing more than we do. Here are 8 things we want from GTA 6.
GTA Online but it's good
Phil Savage, UK Editor-in-Chief: As much as I've enjoyed GTA Online over the years, I can't help but wonder what it could be if it wasn't a hot mess. The multiplayer branch of GTA 5 clearly outperformed Rockstar's initial ambitions, and it shows every time you log in.
It's in the way various actions are tied to entirely different menus depending on whether they were envisioned back when the game was first made or bolted on later. It's in the way there's no consistency to the reward structures of various releases, leaving older content feeling unrewarding and unwanted. It's in the way groups are forced into weird ad-hoc corporations, which have to be swapped out over the course of the session if your friends also want to be rewarded for their business investments.
GTA 6 offers a real chance for Rockstar to build an online mode that is deserving of GTA Online's immense popularity, and to build systems and structures that can support an evolving and expanding world. GTA Online could have been incredible, but instead it was a thing that allowed for genuinely great moments around mountains of crap. If Rockstar can get the underlying infrastructure right, GTA 6's multiplayer could be unstoppable.
A strong female protagonist
Lauren Morton, Associate Editor: If the GTA 6 leaks from last year are anything to go by, and it seems that they likely are, one of GTA 6's protagonists is a woman named Lucia. This felt like a really safe ask for Rockstar's next mega game even before the leaks, honestly. So what I want is more than bare minimum—an interesting woman who holds her own in the story and contributes to GTA's satire of American culture without being the butt of it.
And hold the stereotypes. If Lucia is Latina, as it's been rumored, her sole personality trait should not be femme fatale. And if she's bilingual, then for goodness' sake let Rockstar have consulted or employed bilingual writers so she speaks like a person and not a sitcom.
Mollie Taylor, Features Producer: Years of playing GTA Online as a female character has made me want a fully-fledged, well-written female protagonist to be in the next mainline game so bad. Nothing brings me more joy than smacking the shit out of guys as my biker gal OC, and I think a badass woman would be the perfect addition to GTA 6. In an ideal world, I'd like to see the ensemble cast trend continue, with a strong, smart woman who absolutely terrifies the other playable characters.
I've seen people claim that a female protagonist wouldn't feel right or fit in with the universe that Rockstar's built, but that's just plain bullshit. Women aren't excluded from being criminals or gang leaders. Now gimme.
Official mod support
Chris Livingston, Senior Editor: Modding has always been a huge part of GTA, but the hoops modders have to jump through to create them and the difficulty players have to get them running is bizarre to me, when it could be made so much easier with official mod support.
When I tune into Twitch and look at the top GTA Online streams, they're always, always, heavily modded roleplay servers. Players and viewers absolutely love them, so why not support streamers and fans with a big suite of modding tools? Rockstar tolerates mods (Take-Two, not so much) but tolerance isn't the same thing as true support. I'd love to see a change in their philosophy when it comes to mods when the GTA 6 launches.
More non-violent, mundane activities
Morgan Park, Staff Writer: I got a real kick out of Red Dead Redemption 2's sometimes-annoying commitment to treating Arthur Morgan like an actual human in the world. Pulling left trigger to bark a few basic greetings at folk getting on with their day was an effective way to give a Rockstar protagonist some verbs other than run and shoot, even if my Arthur did seem to belt out the same version of "heeeey miSTER" a few too many times.
I loved completing Arthur's little chores during long horse rides, like crafting bullets or polishing his revolvers. Grand Theft Auto could use more world interaction like this, and if the explosive popularity of GTA Online's roleplay servers are any indication, players are into mixing mundane tasks into their chaos murder games.
Not to begrudge the occasional five star police escape, but I'd love more non-violent activities in whatever coastal city we're headed to next. Rockstar has kind of already learned this in GTA Online. One of its biggest appeals is simply curating a wardrobe or collecting customized cars. Last year Rockstar added an official car meet mode to the game (that players ended up farming for XP, oops). I had a lot of fun goofing around with GTA5's triathlons and golf courses, but it'd be even cooler if things like work and leisure were integrated into a proper life sim in GTA 6.
Euphoria-like NPC interactions
Rich Stanton, News Editor: The contemporary incarnation of Grand Theft Auto began way back when with GTA 4, which was a quantum leap forwards from GTA: San Andreas as a technical achievement. There are all sorts of things to flag but Rockstar North went big on the third party physics technology Euphoria, and made the world's NPCs react much more 'realistically' to whatever was going on. I still get a slight thrill when I drive slowly near pedestrians and they put their hands on the bonnet (and, yes, sometimes floor it and cackle).
Grand Theft Auto 6 has to have a similar leap in how we think about NPCs because, frankly, Rockstar's are still the best. The current state-of-the-art in video games is still full of repetition, lines that are inappropriate for the context, and tonal deafness to the world's atmosphere and your character's actions. These can be daft and funny and laugh-out-loud, sure, but the next step from this has to be dealing with extraordinarily subtle judgments about what NPCs should say and when, and how they should act around a given player.
I don't think it's exaggerating to say that NPCs are one of the world's most important features, and the more subtle, the more contextualised, even the more long-term those reactions can be, the more magical it will all seem.
More customization in my bazillion dollar apartment
Lauren Morton, Associate Editor: I am a simple woman. I like building things. I build things in The Sims. I build things in Valheim and Minecraft and any game that will let me. I participate in combat to the extent required to unlock tat and trophies to stuff into my designated space.
Both GTA Online and Red Dead Online give players very constrained control over their space in the form of themes you can buy and apply to the properties you own. If we're dreaming up the biggest and best GTA 6, I want whatever its online side winds up being (and hey, singleplayer too) to give me control over designing and fussing with properties. I want to know the pain Mollie felt when she bought a house in FF14.
A cheat code that makes all the cars fly around and crash and stuff
Tyler Wilde, Executive Editor: The proper way to play GTA is to blow through the intro mission as fast as you can, enter a bunch of cheat codes, and then launch a knock-off Bugatti into restricted airspace while ignoring anything to do with the story forevermore. I'm sure GTA 6 will have cheat codes, because they all do, so it probably isn't a request that needed making. I just wanted it on the record.
Less open world
Andy Chalk, US News Lead: The hallmark of Grand Theft Auto is its massive, teeming open worlds. And they're great! But they're also incredibly distracting. I've never finished a GTA game, because I inevitably end up farting around with bowling or driving an ambulance or whatever, and after dozens of hours of that I lose interest in the whole thing—I have no idea what I'm supposed to be doing and I can't be bothered to find out because I've got 150 hours sunk into the game, I've accomplished basically nothing, and man, I am done.
To be clear, this is 100% a "me" problem. I love huge, sprawling game worlds filled with things to do, but I can't be trusted with them unsupervised. I need gentle guidance—a little nudge now and then to remind me that, hey, this is fun but there's shit to be doing and you need to get doing it. If GTA 6 can do that—if Rockstar is willing to dial back the sheer scale of the game in favor of a deeper, more focused (and, yes, if we want to use that word, linear) experience—then you can count me in. (For the record, I really don't expect it to happen.)