The Not So Secret Recipe to GTAV’s Continued Popularity
Have you ever noticed how certain games just have staying power? And it goes beyond games. You’re probably still holding onto one of these old gaming systems. How do you say goodbye?
The classics are different for everyone. My personal favorites have been Sim City, Rollercoaster Tycoon and Empire: Total War – in no particular order.
GTAV is a more recent addition to my list. Originally launched on PS3 and XBOX360 in 2013, at six years it’s safe to call it a classic.
Its Steam Chart tells us that the most expensive game ever developed – and the fastest selling – is being played by an average of 55,000 PC gamers every second of the day – SIX YEARS AFTER RELEASE!
Constant Development Keeps the Franchise Fresh
The game may have launched six years ago, but the most recent update (GTA Online: Arena War) was released for free on December 11th, 2018.
This is in addition to user-created content that is published across the platform. From racing highly-customized supersports, to engaging in Battlefield-esque team deathmatches, there is enough variety to keep gamers engaged.
A Vibrant Community of Twitchers
The whole “watching someone else play a game thing” is still something I’m wrapping my head around. I know, maybe I’m getting old. But I do acknowledge that it creates a new stream (pun intended) of user engagement that keeps franchises alive.
GTAV, even now, is one of the most watched games on Twitch, but the ads seem to be getting more and more disruptive.
ProTip: I discovered that I can block twitch ads with AdGuard software.
So, I’ll continue to try and wrap my head around “watching a game”, instead of “playing”. And I’m thankful the fan base is expanding to keep GTAV’s multiplayer servers full.
Jaw-Dropping Beauty in an Open World Paradise
Grand Theft Auto, as the name implies, is a franchise built around the theft of vehicles from NPCs and other players. Just like real life, public transportation isn’t up to the challenge of getting around such a huge space.
And the map is MASSIVE. It can take ten minutes to drive, throttle to the floor, from one end to the other. But that long commute is made better by the incredible sights you’ll see along the way.
Here’s just one slideshow of beautiful GTAV screenshots. It really is one of those games where you find yourself slowing down and gazing up at sunsets that make you want to buy (read: steal) one of the ridiculously overpriced yachts and sail away.
In summary, there are many things that can keep a fan base engaged with a “classic”. The open-world, multiplayer universe that GTAV has created, complete with regular updates, is always expanding to scratch new itches for dedicated fans.
So far, I’ve resisted the pull to buy “Shark Cards” – the opportunity Rockstar provides gamers to pour more of their hard-earned real-world money into the virtual platform. But with so many different aspects to explore, it’s getting harder and harder to keep my wallet closed.
And honestly, I’m glad they’re pulling in fresh dollars to support ongoing development. They’ve found a way to build a lasting franchise that is financially sustainable without resorting to pay-to-win (cough, cough, Star Wars…)