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Three iconic cities, three epic stories. Play the genre-defining classics of the original Grand Theft Auto Trilogy: Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas updated for a new generation, now with across-the-board enhancements including brilliant new lighting and environmental upgrades, with high-resolution textures, increased draw distances, Grand Theft Auto V-style controls and targeting, and much more, bringing these beloved worlds to life with all new levels of detail.
— Rockstar Games

Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition is a compilation of three remastered Grand Theft Auto games from the 3D Universe. It includes Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, originally released on the PlayStation 2 in 2001, 2002 and 2004 respectively. The three games have been marketed as a trilogy since 2005 and in online PC gaming platforms such as Steam since at least January 2011[1]. The Definitive Edition was officially announced by Rockstar Games on October 8th, 2021.

The games were released digitally on November 11, 2021 and physically on December 17, 2021, and they are available on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC; and later for Apple iOS and Android in 2022/2023. The games feature "across-the-board upgrades including graphical improvements and modern gameplay enhancements for all three titles, while still maintaining the classic look and feel of the originals". [2]

Synopsis

It all starts in Liberty City. With the freedom to go anywhere and jack anyone, the ruthless world of crime is at your fingertips, if you have enough guts to take it.
Grand Theft Auto III - The Definitive Edition official synopsis (set in 2001).
Welcome to the 1980s. From the decade of big hair and pastel suits comes the story of one man’s rise to the top of the criminal pile. Grand Theft Auto returns with Tommy Vercetti’s tale of betrayal and revenge in a neon-soaked tropical town full of excess and brimming with possibilities.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City - The Definitive Edition official synopsis (set in 1986).
It’s the early ’90s. After a couple of cops frame him for homicide, Carl ‘CJ’ Johnson is forced on a journey that takes him across the entire state of San Andreas, to save his family and to take control of the streets.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas - The Definitive Edition official synopsis (set in 1992).

Enhancements and Changes

  • New GTA V-inspired modern controls and gameplay features.
  • Across-the-board visual enhancements, but still keeping the 3D Universe aesthetic.
    • Resolution upgrades and improved visual fidelity across the world.
    • Brilliant new lighting and environmental upgrades.
    • High-resolution textures for characters, weapons, vehicles, roads, and much more for greater detail.
    • Increased draw distances.
    • Enhanced shadows, reflections.
    • Improved water and weather effects.
    • Enhanced detail on trees and foliage.
    • Parallax Interior Mapping for many buildings in all three games. (Not mentioned on the Newswire post)
  • Platform-Specific Features.
    • 4K-resolution support with 60 FPS performance for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X systems.
    • NVIDIA DLSS support for PC.
    • Touch screen camera zooming, pans and menu selections as well as Gyro aiming for Nintendo Switch.

Development

In August 2021, a report published by Kotaku detailed that Rockstar Games was developing a remastered trilogy of Grand Theft Auto titles: Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City, and San Andreas, originally developed by Rockstar North. According to the report, its development was led by Rockstar Dundee and uses the Unreal Engine. [3] In September, the Game Rating and Administration Committee in South Korea gave the trilogy a game rating. Media speculation about the game continued in early October after an update to the Rockstar Games Launcher included related data to the game in addition to logos, art, and game achievements.

Several days later, on October 8, 2021, Rockstar officially announced the remastered trilogy on its website and social media pages.

Existing versions of the three games were removed from digital retailers on October 11, 2021. Audiences and journalists criticized the move, citing concerns with video game preservation, a lack of choice between versions, and the potential removal of music due to expired licenses, which had occurred with previous re-releases. [4]

Title Updates

To see a list of GTA The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition's patch notes history, see Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition/Title Update Notes

Galleries

Screenshots

See more, Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition/Screenshots

Artwork

Trailers

See more, Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition/Trailers
Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition Coming Soon
Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition Trailer
Grand Theft Auto III – The Definitive Edition Comparison Video
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City – The Definitive Edition Comparison Video
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas – The Definitive Edition Comparison Video
Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition - Nintendo Switch

Videos

GTA: The Trilogy Definitive Edition - Opening Credits (GTA 3, Vice City and San Andreas)

Controversy

In the lead-up to the announcement of the remasters, Take-Two Interactive had been aggressively acting against many Modifications, especially those involving the trilogy titles and their assets, including issuing DMCA takedowns and lawsuits, leading to both speculation of the upcoming release and animosity among the modding community.[5]

After release, numerous graphical bugs and glitches[6], physics glitches from the GTA San Andreas mobile port, and a number of other issues plagued the titles. Switch users found the Definitive Edition unplayable due to framerate issues.[7]

From November 12, 2021[8] to November 15[9], the Definitive Edition was pulled from Rockstar's store and made inaccessible on PC Rockstar Games Launcher after it was found that files allegedly for the infamous Hot Coffee Modification were found in the GTA San Andreas source files, as well as 20 songs from the original GTA San Andreas release that were supposed to have been deleted due to licensing issues. In the intervening time, many customers began flooding Take Two Interactive's and Rockstar's Twitter pages with demands for refunds.[10]

Response

Hi everyone,
We want to provide an update regarding the unexpected technical issues that came to light as part of the launch of Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition.
Firstly, we want to sincerely apologize to everyone who has encountered issues playing these games.
The Grand Theft Auto series — and the games that make up this iconic trilogy — are as special to us as we know they are to fans around the world. The updated versions of these classic games did not launch in a state that meets our own standards of quality, or the standards our fans have come to expect.
We have ongoing plans to address the technical issues and to improve each game going forward. With each planned update, the games will reach the level of quality that they deserve to be.
— Rockstar Games

On November 19, 2021, Rockstar posted a notice on their newswire responding to the criticism, apologising for the issues and promising to update the Definitive Edition and restore PC access to the original version Trilogy, including gifting the original versions to anyone who purchases the Definitive Edition before June 30, 2022[11].

References

  1. The Steam store original trilogy package.

  2. "Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition and More Coming Soon" - Rockstar Newswire, Oct 8, 2021
  3. "The GTA Remastered Trilogy Appears To Be Real, And Coming To Switch" - Kotaku
  4. "GTA 3, Vice City and San Andreas fans are using Steam reviews to encourage people to buy the originals before Rockstar delists them next week" - Eurogamer
  5. GTA III & Vice City reverse-engineered code taken down on GitHub again by Take-Two DMCA
  6. https://www.polygon.com/22778127/grand-theft-auto-trilogy-definitive-edition-launch-bugs-graphics-pc-version-down
  7. https://www.videogameschronicle.com/review/gta-trilogy-definitive-edition-nintendo-switch/
  8. https://twitter.com/RockstarSupport/status/1459311246789038089
  9. https://twitter.com/RockstarSupport/status/1460037716322795528
  10. https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2021-11-13-rockstar-inundated-with-refund-requests-as-grand-theft-auto-the-trilogy-the-definitive-edition-backlash-intensifies
  11. While one of the goals of the Definitive Editions was to allow players to enjoy these games on modern platforms for many years to come, we also understand that some of you would still like to have the previous classic versions available for purchase.
    We will be adding the classic PC versions of Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas back to the Rockstar Store shortly as a bundle. Additionally, everyone who has purchased Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition for PC from the Rockstar Store through June 30, 2022, will receive these classic versions in their Rockstar Games Launcher library at no additional cost. We will update everyone as soon as these are back in the Rockstar Store.
    — Rockstar Games

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