Grand Theft Auto Series

Grand Theft Auto Series
Grand Theft Auto Series. © Rockstar Games

The Grand Theft Auto series of action/adventure video games is one of the best-selling and most critically acclaimed series of video games ever released, but it is also one of the most controversial. The GTA series has drawn the ire of many special interest groups, parents and government officials who have called for changes to the content, rating and even outright bans on the sale of the games due to the depiction of violent crimes, racial stereotypes, and sexually explicit content to name a few. In Grand Theft Auto games, players assume the role of a criminal who performs a wide variety of missions that involve criminal behavior and violent crimes that can include auto theft, robbery, extortion and much more.

The list of games in the Grand Theft Auto series includes an overview of each of the 11 games that have been released for the PC from the original Grand Theft Auto in 1997 to Grand Theft Auto V in 2015.

01
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Grand Theft Auto 1

Grand Theft Auto Screenshot
Grand Theft Auto Screenshot. © Rockstart Games

Release Date: Oct 1997

Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: BMG Interactive
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer
Expansions: London 69, London 61

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Grand Theft Auto was the first game in the Grand Theft Auto series of games which was originally released for MS-DOS and Windows-based PCs back in October 1997. In the game, players take control of a criminal who travels freely through the three main cities of the Grand Theft Auto series that have been the subject and settings of subsequent games. These include Liberty City, Vice City, and San Andreas. The missions of Grand Theft Auto are all crime based missions which will have the player take part in criminal activities such as grand theft auto, bank robbery, assault, theft, and more. Players learn of new missions by answering public telephones where crime bosses will detail specific tasks or "jobs" that need to be performed.

The original Grand Theft Auto, and Grand Theft Auto 2 features two-dimensional graphics with the camera looking down on the action from a bird's eye view of the streets from a few stories above. Like other titles in the series, the game offers freedom to complete missions at the player's leisure, however, the original Grand Theft Auto is somewhat limited and not full sandbox/open style freedom seen in later titles. The primary objective for players is to reach a certain number of points in order to complete a level and move onto the next one. Points are earned by accepting missions from Buddey Seragliano's gang and completing them, the points are also used as money to purchase various items but this takes away from your score and goal for completing levels. Missions also become increasingly difficult as the game progresses, in which case the Grand Theft Auto 1 Cheats and Codes will come in handy for those who are stuck.

Grand Theft Auto 1, as it is most commonly referred to now, was released as registered freeware by Rockstar Games in 2004. At the time of this writing, the Rockstar Classics free download series is unavailable, but the game can still be downloaded from various 3rd party sites as detailed in the Grand Theft Auto free PC game page.

02
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Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969

Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969
Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Mar 31, 1999
Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: Take-Two Interactive
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player

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Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969 is the second release in the Grand Theft Auto series however it is officially considered a mission pack expansion for Grand Theft Auto 1 rather than a full blown release since it did require the original game in order to install and play. Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969 was released in 1999 for MS-DOS and Windows-based PCs and then released for the original PlayStation console a month later that same year. The game utilizes the same basic game mechanics and graphics as the original Grand Theft Auto with the two-dimensional top-down view and overall gameplay is virtually unchanged between the two.

Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969 includes 30 new vehicles and a total of 39 missions. As the title suggests, the game is set in 1969 London where players perform all sorts of criminal activities for an organized crime gang run by the Crisp Twins. The Crips Twins in the game are based on the famous real-life Kray Twins who ran organized crime gang in London during the 1950s and 60s. Players can also name their character and choose a picture but neither then the name or appearance has any impact on gameplay.

Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969 is not currently available for digital download through any of the major download services and it was not a title that was released as registered freeware by Rockstar games so it can be harder to come by than the other games in the series. It was included in the Grand Theft Auto Classics Collection pack released in 2004, but that has since gone out of print. The best bet for finding a copy for the PC or even PlayStation is through Ebay or Amazon Marketplace.

03
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Grand Theft Auto: London, 1961

Grand Theft Auto: London, 1961
Grand Theft Auto: London, 1961. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Jun 1, 1999
Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: Take Two Interactive
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer

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Grand Theft Auto: London 1961 is an expansion pack to Grand Theft Auto and Grand Theft Auto: London, 1969. It was released in June 1999, just a few months after the release of GTA London '69 and was made available as free upgrade mission pack expansion. Unlike the previous GTA London '69 game, however, GTA London '61 was only available for the PC and requires both GTA1 and GTA London '69 in order to install and play.

Like both of its predecessors, it was developed with the same game engine with the identical top-down two-dimensional graphics and game mechanics. As the title indicates the story for this expansion is a prequel to the first GTA London game set eight years prior to the events of that game. Grand Theft Auto London 1961 includes approximately six missions, 22 new vehicles, new cut scene and a deathmatch multiplayer map. This title remains one of the lesser known titles in the Grand Theft Auto series as it primarily relied on fans word of mouth and online forums posts rather than traditional marketing for its release. While the overall gameplay and graphics remain unchanged GTA London 1961 did introduce a number of new features and power-ups to the series including the first Drive-By Shooting, the Armor Shop, and power up to increase car speed. The multiplayer component of GTA London '61 also expanded the multiplayer gameplay beyond was was available in Grand Theft Auto 1.

Grand Theft Auto: London, 1961 is still available for free download from the official Rockstar GTA: London website. Simply click on the flashing Union Jack icon to show the free download link for GTA London 1961.

04
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Grand Theft Auto 2

Grand Theft Auto 2
Grand Theft Auto 2. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Sep 30, 1999
Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer

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Grand Theft Auto 2 is the second main title in the Grand Theft Auto series of games but the fourth overall title when the GTA London expansion and mission packs are included. The game, like its predecessors Grand Theft Auto 1 and GTA London, is an open world action-adventure game and played from a top-down perspective giving players a bird's eye view of the building and streets of the city. Unlike the original Grand Theft Auto and the games that followed, Grand Theft Auto 2 is set in a no-name city called Anywhere City, USA and the game is set sometime in the near future from the time of its original release. The Anywhere City is divided into three districts or sectors each of which contains three organized crime gangs that can hire players to perform missions. There are a total of seven organized crime gangs, one of which is present in all three districts and then two of the remaining six gangs are found in each district.

Missions in Grand Theft Auto 2 use the same format used in Grand Theft Auto, players will receive phone calls on public pay phones from crime bosses who want them to perform certain jobs. Grand Theft Auto 2 expands upon a number of gameplay aspects of the original, one is the aspect of multiple crime gangs. Players have the ability to perform missions for different gangs which can cause a certain level of distrust from the competing gangs of the sector a mission may take place in. Another new feature to GTA 2 is the types of law enforcement that can pursue the main character. The original game only had local police, but in addition to local police GTA also features SWAT teams, special agents, and even the army. These more advanced types of law enforcement begin to pursue players as they attain higher levels and proceed to through the three districts of the city. Grand Theft Auto 2 also features four multiplayer game modes, Deathmatch, Race, Tag and Team Deathmatch.

The PC version of Grand Theft Auto 2 allows for single player gameplay to be played in two different modes simply know as noon or dusk. Noon was set during daytime and used lower graphics settings while dusk was set during the early evening where more advanced graphics were required to account for various light sources and shadows. In addition to the PC, the game was also released for the Sega Dreamcast and PlayStation consoles and the Game Boy Color handheld system. The game was released as registered freeware from Rockstar Games but like Grand Theft Auto 1, it is currently not offered for download from Rockstar. Third party sites however still do host the game and make it available for free download.

05
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Grand Theft Auto III

Grand Theft Auto III
Grand Theft Auto III. © Grand Theft Auto

Release Date: Oct 22, 2001
Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player

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Grand Theft Auto III is a third-person action-adventure game released in October 2001 and is the first game in the series to feature gameplay in the third-person, over the shoulder viewpoint. It is also the fifth title in the series and follow-up to Grand Theft Auto 2 but does not follow the storyline setup in GTA 2. The game enhances upon the open world nature of the game's story allowing players to traverse the city and complete missions at their leisure in a non-linear fashion. Missions can be categorized as either story-based missions or side missions with players being able to complete them in virtually any order. GTA 3 also marks the return to Liberty City, one of the three main cities of the Grand Theft Auto world that was first introduced in Grand Theft Auto 1. Players take on the role of Claude, a criminal who is shot by his girlfriend during a bank robbery and subsequently arrested by police, convicted, and sentenced to jail. However, upon transfer to jail Claude and another prisoner escape and make their way to a safe house where he is introduced to a crime boss and thus begins his quest for vengeance.

In addition to introducing the main character with a story rich background, Grand Theft Auto 3 was also the first game in the series built using a 3D game engine and it quickly became the best-selling video game for 2001 and was praised by fans and critics alike despite some backlash surrounding the game's violent gameplay and story. The gameplay of combining a third-person shooter and driving simulation in an open world found in Grand Theft Auto III was not a new concept but it did popularize this gameplay which has been used in all the GTA games since as well as many other non-GTA games. Much like the previous titles, as the player advances levels by completing missions and committing crimes his "wanted" level will increase which triggers different levels of law enforcement who start to pursue them.

Grand Theft Auto III is still popular today and is available from most PC game digital download services, there is also a full list of cheats, codes, and walkthroughs available, those having difficulty getting past a certain mission are encouraged to try them out. GTA 3 contains only a single player mode and was originally released for Microsoft Windows-based PCs, Xbox and PlayStation consoles, it has since been released for Mac OS, Android, and iOS platforms.

06
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Grand Theft Auto: Vice City

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Oct 22, 2001
Developer: DMA Design
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player

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Grand Theft: Vice City is the sixth game in the Grand Theft Auto series of open world action/adventure games and is the second title in the GTA III era of games that contain characters, settings, and storyline that all interconnect across the games. Vice City is set in the year 1986 in the fictional city known as Vice City which is based in Miami, FL. In it players take on the role of a Mafia hitman named Tommy Vercetti who like Claude from ​Grand Theft Auto III is on a quest for revenge after a drug deal he was involved with has gone wrong. Also like its predecessor, GTA: Vice City was praised by fans and critics while receiving some backlash from many special interest groups for its violent gameplay. It was also the best-selling game of 2002 and is one of the top-selling video games of all time.

The overall gameplay and graphics in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City are nearly identical to that of GTA III, players have the freedom to travel around Vice City, completing story based and side missions at their leisure. As the story progresses and players, complete missions different areas of the city become unlocked making a new story based and side missions available. The timeline for GTA: Vice City is set some 15 years prior to the events of GTA III and it includes some of the same nonplayable characters during an earlier period in their life. GTA: Vice City more than 100 different vehicle types most of which are drivable by players, which is nearly double the number of vehicles featured in GTA III it also includes new vehicles of helicopter and motorcycles.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is available from various PC game download services and has a full array of cheats, walkthroughs, and secrets available to assist players in finishing the game or provide extra fun for those that may have completed the game.

07
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Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Oct 26, 2004
Developer: Rockstar North
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer

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Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is the seventh title in the Grand Theft Auto series of games and the largest game world of the three titles that are part of the GTA III era of games. The game is set in the state of San Andreas which is loosely based on the states of California and Nevada with most of the gameplay action taking place across three cities, Los Santos, San Fierro and Las Venturas which are based in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Las Vegas respectively. The timeline of GTA: San Andreas takes place 1992 with players taking on the role of Carl "CJ" Johnson who has just returned to Los Santos after five years in Liberty City where he is implicated in a murder by a corrupt police officer named Frank Tenpenny. They are then forced to complete missions for the corrupt police officers in hopes that they will not frame him for murder.

GTA: San Andreas open world sandbox style gameplay is mostly unchanged compared to previous GTA games, the game world itself is much bigger than previous games. Players can use nearly any means available for travel and there is also a wide array of weapons and items available for use. The game also includes a wide variety of story-based and side missions including new mission types such as burglary, pimping, and more. The game also introduced RPG style elements to the game allowing players to customize the appearance of the main character which has an impact on the reactions of non-player characters. Players must also ensure that their character stays healthy be eating properly and exercising as this will have an impact on physical attributes and activities the players can perform in the game.

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, like most games in the series, was critically acclaimed and the number one selling game of 2004. but not without controversy. The controversy surrounding GTA: San Andreas was considerably greater than previous titles due to sexually explicit content that was unlockable through a fan made a mod called the Hot Coffee Mod. The existence of this content caused a huge uproar from special interest groups and government officials alike and caused the Entertainment Ratings Safety Board to change the rating of GTA: San Andreas from Mature to AO for Adults Only. This subsequently led to major retailers suspending sales of the game and pulling it from store shelves. Rockstar Games and Take-Two Interactive responded quickly, by releasing a "Cold Coffee" patch that disabled this content. The content was then removed from the game's source code and re-released after the M rating was re-instated. Without this content Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas still contains a number of cheats and secret content that can be unlocked.

08
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Grand Theft Auto IV

Grand Theft Auto IV
Grand Theft Auto IV. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Dec 2, 2008
Developer: Rockstar North
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer

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Grand Theft Auto IV is a third-person action adventure game that is the eleventh game in the Grand Theft Auto series although the eighth released for the PC. In Grand Theft Auto IV, players return to Liberty City, the setting of the original Grand Theft Auto and Grand Theft Auto III, where they take on the role of Niko Bellic, an Eastern European immigrant hoping to live the American Dream.

Like previous games in the series, Grand Theft Auto IV was both critically praised and commercially successful earning half a billion dollars in its first week of release in April for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 consoles. Much like other games in the series, Grand Theft Auto IV is played in a large open world game environment that provides players the freedom to perform missions, side missions and jobs at their leisure. Players can travel about Liberty city on foot, by car or b a number of other modes of transportation, most of involving some sort of criminal activities.

The timeline for Grand Theft Auto IV takes place in 2008 but the storyline is unrelated to the connected storyline of GTA 3, GTA: Vice City and GTA: San Andreas and contains a much larger version of Liberty City. In GTA 4, Liberty City, which is based in New York City, has been divided into four boroughs to match the boroughs of NYC. Players will take on both story based missions that contain a set of objectives to move the overall storyline forward but there are countless side missions and jobs they can perform along the way. As in previous games, certain areas of the city are only unlocked when story based missions have been completed. The overall gameplay in GTA 4 also stays true to the series with most action occurring in the third person perspective. In fights, players can use all sorts of objects in melee attacks in addition to guns and explosives. One new feature in GTA 4 is a playable first person perspective mode that is available when driving or piloting vehicles.

Grand Theft Auto IV features both a single players story campaign mode, a multiplayer co-operative model and a competitive multiplayer mode that allows for up to 32 players to explore a portion of the single player world. Competitive multiplayer modes include deathmatch and street races. There were also two expansion packs released for GTA 4 each of which included two digital expansion packs The Lost and Damned and The Balad of Gay Tony.

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Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V 4K Screenshot
Grand Theft Auto V 4K Screenshot. © Rockstar Games

Release Date: Mar 24, 2015
Developer: Rockstar North
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Genre: Action/Adventure
Theme: Crime
Game Modes: Single player, multiplayer

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Grand Theft Auto V is a action/adventure game and the fifteenth release in the series if you include the expansion packs for Grand Theft Auto 1 and Grand Theft Auto IV and non-PC releases but the eleventh GTA game or expansion released for the PC. The game returns players to San Andreas, the fictional state based on the states of California and Nevada, and same setting for ​Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. It was initially released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in September 2013 and then for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles a year later. It was finally released for the PC in March 2015 with enhancements that take full advantage of processing and graphical power of PCs. These enhancements in the PC version of the game include greater graphical detail, support for higher screen resolutions, denser traffic, updated AI, enhanced weather effects and more.

Grand Theft Auto V contains the same open world design that is found in every other Grand Theft Auto release. GTA 5 differs a little in the fact that it can be played from the third person view or first person view and the fact that players will switch between three different main characters. The game world of GTA 5 includes the city of Los Santos and the surrounding areas and is hte largest gaming world to date in the series. As with previous titles, players will unlock different parts of the game world as the progress through the story based missions but will have the ability to take on side missions and jobs which can be completed at their leisure. The story revoles around the three protagonists and criminals, Michael De Santa, Trevor Philips and Franklin Clinton, who engage in criminal activity under threat from rival government agencies. GTA 5 also includes an RPG style aspect in the fact that each character has a set of skills and abilities that can be improved as they gain experience as they player through the game.

The online multiplayer component for GTA 5, known as Grand Theft Auto Online, is somewhat of a stand alone offering in addition to the single player story campaign. It is a persistent game world where players will create a unique character and offers various game play including racing, death match and objective based multiplayer missions. It also contains leveling which allows players to be more guns, vehicles and missions. It also includes its unlockable achievements for both the single and multiplayer games