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This article (or section) refers to content in the Enhanced version for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC release of Grand Theft Auto Online that may be absent from other versions.
For a complete list of the features of the Enhanced version for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC version of Grand Theft Auto Online, please see here.
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Arena War are a series of modes featured in Grand Theft Auto Online as part of the Arena War update.


Although the Arena War modes are essentially Adversary Modes and the concept of player/team versus another player/team is the same, they are labeled as their own series, similar to the bunker-based modes. All modes are restricted to "Arena Contenders", a small range of vehicles specifically purposed for arena combat.

These game modes contribute to the player's Arena War Career path, by earning Arena Points (once they own an Arena Workshop) and unlocking rewards.


There are various Arena War modes available to play, each one with three different maps that share the same setups:

  • Map I set the modes into an Apocalypse setup, which are depicted in a post-apocalyptic scenario, featuring large bones, wrecked vehicles, and damaged structures over a sandy, desert-like terrain.
  • Map II set the modes into a Future Shock setup, which are depicted as a modern area with clean structures, often predominated by distinctive patterns.
  • Map III set the modes into a Nightmare setup, which follows a rather colorful ambience and food-themed structures around, including large cans, doughnuts, and bottles. Several common props are also used as part of the map, being large bicycle wheels, tires and overscaled license plates.
Image Mode Game Style
Carnage Last Player/Team Standing mode. Eliminate the competition to win.
Flag War Capture the Flag mode. Score a point by taking the enemy team's flag to the base and prevent them from taking it from their own.
Games Masters Arena Team has to collect checkpoints within a limited time, while the Spectator Box Team intercepts them with arena traps and other gadgets.
Here Come The Monsters The "Contenders" have to evade the "Gladiators" until the timer runs out.
Hot Bomb Avoid the bomb by running away from the player who has it to survive until the end of the match. If the player's car has the bomb, they have to pass it to another player.
Tag Team Last team standing mode. Eliminate the opposing team and survive until the end, or swap with your ally and use the power-ups in the spectator box while the car is repaired to a limited extent.
Wreck It Race-based mode. Finish in 1st place while avoiding the competition. Repair the car by using the pit stop area.
Released during the Festive Surprise 2018 event
Buzzer Beater Survival-based mode. Collect checkpoints, perform stunts and take out enemy players to increase the timer and being the last one to win. Released on December 18, 2018.
Bomb Ball Push the bomb ball into the opposing team's area until the timer runs out to score a point, or push it onto the opposing team's goal to score bonus points. Released on December 25, 2018.


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The player is able to participate with their vehicle of choice, either the ones provided by the game (which defaults to a ram weapon) or custom ones (if the "Custom Vehicles" option is enabled by the host).

Player-owned vehicles have options to install/remove applicable modifications, being the armor, the ram weapon, and the mines. Note that the player is charged with in-game currency, in the same manner as modifying them at the Arena Workshop.

  • Armor upgrades slightly improves the vehicle's general defense against collisions and other forms of attacks. However, they may affect their overall handling (which depends of the armor level).
  • Mounted weaponry, particularly mounted .50 Cal guns, have limited ammo before it has to be reloaded, able to be used for two seconds and recharges in two seconds as well. If at least one round is fired and the guns are not used for the same two seconds, they will automatically recharge.

Players have to be careful of traps scattered through the arena. While some of them only disrupt the player's vehicle, others may damage them, potentially destroying their vehicle quickly. They can be triggered either by players when driving over them in the arena or by a spectator (with the Arena War Wheel or during Games Masters).

  • Bollards: small bollards that raise up and disrupt most vehicles. Deathbikes are able to pass through these.
  • Single Bollard: works the same as the bollards, but are often found on narrower sections of the arena.
  • Barriers: works similar to the bollards, but they block anything and may flip vehicles.
  • Flip platforms: powerful platforms that can send vehicles flying, more so than the barriers.
  • Dual elevating platforms: they lower down independently from the other to make any vehicle getting stuck, then raising up instantly to send the vehicles away.
  • Spinning platforms: circular platforms with a barrier on the middle that will spin faster upon triggering it, sending vehicles away with considerable force.
  • Fire Pits: dangerous traps that can cause severe damage to vehicles positioned over it. On Future Shock maps, there are equivalents that function as shockers, which also cause an EMP effect on the vehicles, often unable to steer temporarily.
  • Land mines: basic mines that can push vehicles away, somewhat similar to the kinetic grenades. May be dangerous for players using Deathbikes.

Turrets are an alternative form of attack for either players in the arena or spectators with the Arena War Wheel (except in Games Masters). The turrets have three different weapons the operator can switch between, although not all types are available at once.

  • Machine Gun: a standard machine gun which causes moderate damage against other contenders.
  • Homing Rockets: a moderately powerful weapon, which can cause good damage against contenders (about 3-4 missiles). However, they are restricted to fire once a target has been locked on, which takes about three seconds and may get interrupted if the target is out of the reticle.
  • Guided Missile: a slow but powerful weapon, which can destroy a vehicle in a single shot. It can be controlled to guide it towards a target and its speed can be adjusted. Once the missile is used, a cooldown of one minute is applied.

Spectators are able to use special gadgets that have higher mobility and can be used to disrupt the competition:

  • Drones: these remote-controlled vehicles can be used to disable vehicles temporarily with their electromagnetic pulses and cause good damage with the self-destruct sequence. The EMP pulse takes one minute to recharge.
  • RC Bandito: these remote-controlled cars can be used to deploy up to three kinetic mines around the arena and be also used as explosives to cause damage against other vehicles.


  • On some Nightmare maps, one can see the outer edges of the map, as well as some fences, modeled after license plates, being the usual "San Andreas" plate, along with "North Yankton" plates.