So I love the guys & gals at Rockstar Games, but let’s keep it real. The launch of Grand Theft Auto Online was a big fail. What is regarded a work of art as a single player, is also viewed by many people as entertaining as a boat anchor when playing the online portion. So I let some time pass and recently gave it another spin to see if it has been fixed.
Blue or Red Pill?
I’ve been gun-shy about doing this because the venerable series’ online offering was practically unplayable at its launch. Spotty performance riddled the game at every corner including server disconnects, or them not responding at all. I even had to remake a character after playing a few missions, only to find out the next day it was gone. Ahhhh yesssss, the early days of GTA Online. I remember them all too well, like it were yesterday. A lot of us do.
A month passed and a few gamers I know who had already finished the single player traded their copies with stores that buy/sell used games for store credits because they were so turned off by the online problems. I also think the upcoming next gen consoles might have played a factor in their decision as well, so I recognize that my words here may fall on deaf ears for people that have made the same choice to abandon ship.
If at First You Don’t Succeed…
Shortly after I pressed the button on my controller to load the online side of the game, I was staring at my avatar standing in a rundown hood. I wanted to get my bearings and pulled up the map to see where I was. At that point I heard music over my Bluetooth headset. That confirmed I wasn’t alone. I said “sup erybody?” slang for “what’s up everybody?”, seven other people replied almost simultaneously. Great, folks to team up with. Now it was time to explore, get gear and do missions to fatten my pockets.
Chaos, is Good (Gordon Gekko voice)
Long story short, the world of GTA Online is beautiful visually but also dark and chaotic. I mean chaotic in a good way, because its supposed to be. Its Grand Theft Auto for crying out loud. This is pure escapism wrapped in a modern day video game masterpiece. I had a lot of fun, but most importantly no hiccups while playing GTA Online whatsoever. Sure there may still be some unresolved issues that still need to be addressed, but at the moment it appears to me that Rockstar truly has it under control now.
You’ve Got Bank! (AOL voice)
In a bid to woo disappointed players back to GTA Online, Rockstar is showering players with virtual money via their recently announced stimulus package. To qualify you must have played Grand Theft Auto Online during October of 2013, which is the month it went live. If you qualify, you’ll find a nice cold stash of $500,000 deposited in your in-game bank account. I got mine, did you get yours?
The bottom line is that Grand Theft Auto Online is finally running as well as originally promised by Rockstar. If you really enjoyed the single player, I recommend you take advantage of the online because you can now reliably extend your GTA-V experience.
PS: Its nice to see that there is still a lot of life left in these current gen systems. Enjoy.