Updated Grand Theft Auto Trilogy due this fall for Nintendo Switch, latest PlayStation, Xbox consoles
The rumors are true. There really is a remastered version of some Grand Theft Auto video games in the works.
Rockstar Games says Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition, which includes the games Grand Theft Auto III, GTA: Vice City and GTA: San Andreas, will be released later this year for PlayStation 5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PCs.
No price has been announced yet but these new versions will "feature across-the-board upgrades, including graphical improvements and modern gameplay enhancements … while still maintaining the classic look and feel of the originals," the company said in a news release.
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Over the summer, rumors circulated that remastered versions of GTA games were being developed.
Rockstar is celebrating the 20th anniversary of GTA III with events marking the anniversary in GTA Online. Back when GTA III was released in October 2001 for PlayStation 2, the game was criticized by some for its criminal content because players would run prostitutes, sell drugs, commit murder and, obviously, steal cars.
"GTA3 glamorizes antisocial and criminal activity" and is "inappropriate for kids," David Walsh of the National Institute on Media and the Family, told USA TODAY at the time. Even though movies have long told such tales, "with a game, the player is in the role of perpetrator, not observer. That is a different kind of psychological role," he said.
Australia banned the game; here in the U.S. it carried a "Mature" rating for those 17 and older.
But GTA III became a critical success winning annual game of the year awards and selling more than 14.5 million copies. The subsequent games sold even better: GTA Vice City sold more than 17.5 million and GTA: San Andreas (more than 21.5 million), making them among the top-selling games of all time.
Behind Minecraft, GTA V is the second-best seller of all time having sold more than 150 million and the GTA series has sold more than 350 million copies overall, according to publisher Take-Two Interactive.
Those sales are expected to continue to grow, with the Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition also scheduled to launch on iOS and Android devices in the first half of 2022.
Rockstar will be removing existing versions of the games from digital game stores next week.
GTA Online also is coming to the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S in March 2022.
Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider.