Asked & Answered: Max Payne 3, GTA IV, GTA V

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Once again Rockstar Games is answering fan questions. Cutting right to the big story, check out Grand Theft Auto V screenshots here. And now back to everything else...

”Is there going to be an update to balance the weapons [in Max Payne 3]?” - KableTheWarChild

Weapon tuning and balancing is something that we are largely able to do dynamically on the fly - we have already done some balancing based on user feedback collected since we originally solicited the Max Payne 3 Multiplayer community’s input. If you still feel like there is something unfairly balanced however, we definitely encourage you to report it to [email protected] to let us know. That’s the address where our developers are actively looking at suggestions from our online players.

”When will we be able to customize our Loadouts on [the Social Club] website?” - Dukeofibanez
”“Rockstar, how come there aren't any individual leaderboards like in Red Dead Redemption? ... I want to know how I stack up against the best. Please start on making individual leaderboards. An acknowledgment of my request would be nice. Thanks." - Tom543
”Crews should compete on a separate leaderboard that is for large Crews only and move them off the boards shared by the smaller user created Crews because as it stands there is absolutely NO way a user created Crew even populated with top players that are active regularly in matches could ever surpass the official Crews on the boards just due to sheer volume.” - DeafAtheist

All of those things are definitely in the works and should be launching this summer as part of our continuing support for Max Payne 3 online, Multiplayer Crews, and the new Social Club community overall. We totally agree with the Leaderboard feedback and we’re creating more filters to better organize private Crew boards and Crews by size groups. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for updates along those lines plus other Social Club updates and new features like exclusive unlockable Deathmatch character skins and more.

”Any word on the limited print editions [of the Payne 3 comic book series]?” - ViceCityPD
”I wanna know if you’re gonna sell the comic?” - VolginX

For fans who’ve been entering to win a printed copy of Issue #1: “After the Fall” - as you may have seen earlier this week we have copies in hand just off the press (they’ll be shipping out to lucky winners this week). Right now, we’re only planning on giving the physical copies of those comics away as giveaways and we may include some as free bonuses with purchase at the Rockstar Warehouse. We are investigating creating a special edition of all three issues as one graphic novel for purchase.

”Rockstar, can I assume that ONE of the reasons that led you to choose Sao Paulo as a setting for Max Payne 3 is because of your continuous attempt to set your games in different parts of the world, hence re-creating different cultures and scenery in your games rather than sticking to re-created versions of USA cities?” - CDTOE-1809

The reason we did is we thought the city was interesting, both visually and socially, and a logical place for Max to end up, as you can see when you play the game. We are happy making games set in versions of New York or L.A., or in Timbuktu. There is no agenda or master plan in this regard. Just what we believe works well for the proposed gameplay and story and will be visually interesting.

”Why does it take so long for you to develop games when u have so much money and so many staff? It should be months between games not years can someone explain it to me. We live in a consumer society the customer is always right don’t forget that. Yours with anger R Harris” - received via Mouthoff

Upsetting you feel this way! It takes us a long time to make games because we take it enormously seriously, and want the game to be everything it can be so that you, our fans, are as entertained and amazed as possible. We are sorry that it sometimes seems to take a long time, but the massive amount of work it takes to imagine, design, build, and populate a digital world is simply staggering, and we are constantly striving to make sure each game surpasses the last one. The games are made up of millions of assorted assets, and built by hundreds of highly talented, highly specialized people, working incredibly hard. We try to work as fast as possible, but given the combinations of cutting edge technology, high resolution graphics and animation, and hundreds of thousands of sound files, all of which have to work perfectly, and be fun and enjoyable to play, it is not surprising the games take a while to make. Even with sequels to existing games, it is important to us that they have a lot of new elements and feel fresh and exciting. We feel it is our duty to make sure the games are as good as we can make them and as innovative as we can make them.

SPOILER ALERT - “Kill or spare Ivan Bytchkov? Kill or spare Cherise Glover? Kill Playboy X or Dwayne Forge? Kill or spare Clarance Little? Kill Francis McReary or Derrick McReary? Kill or spare Darko Brevic?
Take the deal or get revenge? I know what I'd do but I wanna know what [Niko] would do. You designed him so you know him better than I do.” - Mike Sean Clifton

That’s a very interesting question. The choices that you make in Grand Theft Auto IV while in the shoes of Niko Bellic are completely down to personal preference. Your conscience and curiosity help Niko to make decisions throughout the game, so we really don’t have a straight and true path for how the Niko ‘character’ would react in life or death situations - it’s all down to the individual who plays him, and our hope was to have a fairly even split in all of the choices, so they seemed like real dilemmas. In terms of outcomes (something Niko would not know at the time) there is a ‘best pathway’ which is the sort of thing we reveal when we do a tips post, but that is from a pure game design / mechanics perspective as some choices give you more advantages than others, not from the choices Niko might make at the time. Those are up to you.

”Is there any possibility GTA III or Vice City will become available to purchase/download on the Xbox live marketplace like San Andreas has?” - PURSER_THEPAIN

Due to compatibility issues and other technical limitations, we do not have any plans to make Grand Theft Auto III or Vice City available on the Xbox LIVE Marketplace.

”What is Cottonmouth [the city from Manhunt 2] based on?” - received via Mouthoff

Cottonmouth is inspired by a bunch of large southern US cities, including New Orleans, Charleston, Atlanta, but not any one in particular.

”Hi, I have one question, why is GTA4’s Liberty City so different from the Liberty City in GTA3???” - received via Mouthoff

In the same way that Liberty City in the original Grand Theft Auto is different from the version seen in GTA3, the advances in hardware that preceded Grand Theft Auto IV’s release opened up so many more opportunities to build out and re-invent the game world from what we were able to do in previous games. Liberty City in GTA3 is loosely based on a series of East Coast and mid-western cities - New York, Philly, Detroit, Baltimore etc - but without being any one in particular. With Vice City we began experimenting with cities that were more direct spoofs or impersonations of places. For GTAIV’s Liberty City, we really wanted to make a high definition, incredibly detailed digital impression of New York (but still given the Rockstar ‘twist’), as this was something we had not done before and we felt was interesting.

”Hallo, does ‘The History of Rockstar Games’ book have a release date?” - @Gunslinga_M3 (via Twitter)

We aren’t writing a history book - we’re writing a book more about the games themselves, called Digital + Analogue: The Art and Science of Rockstar Games. We don’t have a release date yet, but the book is shaping up fantastically.

”What is going on with GTAV?” - received via Mouthoff

We are very busy working on the game! Everything is going well, but the game is a huge project. We should have more information and some new assets for you soon.

”Why don’t you give us more news?” - received via Mouthoff

As we have said before, we have often had long gaps between asset releases on previous games and will continue to do so in the future. We are sorry if you find this frustrating, but please understand, we don’t do this because we ‘don’t care about our fans' 'don’t respect our fans’ 'hate GTA fans etc' - precisely the opposite! We do it because we want to make sure we only release 100% correct information, and because we want to keep plenty back for the actual game release so there are still lots of surprises when you play it. The only things we care about are that you enjoy the experience of actually playing the game and that we release accurate information. We just have not been in a position to show more of the game than the trailer and will not be for a while yet. We did, however, manage to sneak a quick screenshot out for you... it’s not much, but we thought it was pretty fun.


Then of course our art team said that no single shot could encapsulate the game properly, so they gave us another...


We will try and get some more screens for you soon and then another trailer when we are ready.

” [obviously fake video link] The above link is a video I have found of apparent lighting test of GTA V. Can you disclose weather this is real or fake. Thank you in advance smile.gif - received via Mouthoff

Now that we’ve announced GTAV, all the way up until game launch (and probably beyond) there is going to be no shortage of non-stop hoaxes, faked footage and screens, rampant rumors and speculation. As a rule, we are not going to get into the game of confirming or denying each of these as they happen as there is simply too much of it. Half of them we don’t even understand - for example, we have no idea what ‘the build model’ is, so have no idea if it is complete or not! Instead, we’ll leave it to fans like yourselves to decide what’s legit and what’s phony. Please assume if you don’t hear it here, it is probably mostly fakes and almost definitely not the complete truth.
One thing we’ll say definitively though is - there is absolutely no ‘beta’ test for the game. If you see ads or solicitations to join a beta program, beware as this could be a dodgy online phishing scam. Your best bet is to only trust information as official if you’re seeing it announced here at the Rockstar Newswire.

”Hey guys hope everything is good over there in Rockstar. Just a question referring to GTA 4, the game was brilliant and I really enjoyed and still do, but what disappointed me was the lack of planes and jets... Can you tell me why you didn't include them, I'm sure you have a very valid reason?” - via Mouthoff
The city was simply too small for effective and enjoyable flying. It was the first time we made a high definition open world, and it was a massive amount of work to make something on that scale - we simply could not make an environment big enough for planes to work properly. Fear not, they are returning in what is our biggest open world game to date.

”All I wanna know is is there goin to be a new Red Dead game any time soon?” - via Facebook
”Will there ever be a sequel or prequel to #RDR I am Red Dead mad!!” - @liquidh20stevew (via Twitter)

Awesome, we love Red Dead too - and are thrilled that so many of you loved John Marston’s tale and are excited for more epic Western action. As we mentioned in our last set of Asked & Answered to similar questions about the future of other game franchises like Bully and L.A. Noire, we don’t always rush to make sequels but that does not mean that we won’t get to them eventually. Stay tuned for further announcements about the future of the Red Dead series.

”Is it true that the hosts from the 'Opie & Anthony Show' were in RDR? Example: Anthony played the shoekeeper in the Gunsmith stores and Opie's picture showed him as a bounty? I was just wondering?” - FeelThePayne

Good question! As you may know, we’re long-time friends with the guys from the Opie & Anthony show - guesting on occasion on-air and also getting some of them involved in our Social Club multiplayer events as they’re pretty serious gamers themselves. To clarify rumors of them making cameo appearances in Red Dead, we can confirm that yes Anthony is the gunsmith, but Opie is not in the game.

”@RockstarGames will you ever release a #socialclub app for smart phones?” - @GamerGuy2O9 (via Twitter)

This is among many things we are looking into for the future of the Rockstar Games Social Club, but we cannot confirm anything yet.

Awesome info and especially the new Grand Theft Auto V screens! Join us at the GTA 5 forums!