This feature can be activated through the Interaction Menu and is free to activate. Entering Passive Mode originally cost $100, but since Title Update 1.07 the fee was waived so that "players could have more options with friends".
Players in passive mode are marked on the Radar and map by a Ø icon and this also appears above their head. Passive mode restricts weapon use, so a player in passive mode is unable to access their Weapon Wheel to access any of their weapons, and no other player can target the passive player with their weapons. Free aiming onto a passive player will disable the player's gun and they will not be able fire at the passive player. Explosive weapons will not damage a passive player's health even if they miss the player but explode close enough to have killed a non-passive player. As of update 1.10, any player who somehow kills a passive player who is not in a vehicle must now pay their hospital bills, and vice versa.
Classic Passive Mode
|This article or section refers to content in the original rendition of Grand Theft Auto V, that is only featured on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 version of the game.|
Classic Passive Mode will only be active while the player is on foot. Entering a vehicle disables passive mode immediately, since any vehicle can be used as a weapon to run over other players (and armed vehicles such as the Rhino, Buzzard, Annihilator and Lazer can be fired from the front by a passive driver), The Fire Truck also cannot use the water cannon, despite not technically being an offensive/armed vehicle, as it is capable of damaging and killing on foot players. While inside a vehicle, the player regains access to their weapon wheel and are able to shoot and get shot at and in the process, get killed. The player's vehicle is not immune to damage if they enter it in Passive Mode. Exiting a vehicle will immediately reactivate passive mode. Passive Mode ends if the passive player shoots at another player.
Conversely, a passive player on foot is also able to be killed by other players in vehicles by being run over or hit by aircraft (including helicopter blades). Medical expenses will be incurred by the vehicle driver in these circumstances.
Enhanced Passive Mode
|This article or section refers to "enhanced version" content in the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC renditions of Grand Theft Auto V and/or Grand Theft Auto Online, that is absent on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 versions.|
For a complete list of the features of the "enhanced" version of Grand Theft Auto V, please see here.
When a player is in passive mode, they will appear to all other players as a semi-transparent ghost and the passive player will see all other players as semi-transparent ghosts. Neither player will be able to harm one another. Players with passive mode enabled cannot be killed in a vehicle.
Upon entering a vehicle, a passive player will apply the ghost-mode to the vehicle. The same rules apply as for the on-foot passive mode: the passive driver will not be able to be targeted, will not suffer damage directly created by other players (explosions, bombs) and the vehicle will not collide with other players or players' vehicles. Sticky Bombs may stick on a vehicle driven by a passive player, although they will not be able to be detonated. However, if the player exits the vehicle at a later time and the rules for detonation still apply, they will be able to be detonated.
If somehow said ghost-vehicle gets destroyed, either by the use of hacks or cheats or because the vehicle the passive player is about to drive has an ignition bomb installed, it will not harm the player in any way.
It is possible to kill a passive mode player using environmental hazards, such as parked cars that the passive player is standing near, as these cars are still "real" to both players.
Players in Passive Mode will not be able to take part on Freemode Events. Likewise, activating passive mode while participating on a Freemode Event will kick the player out of said event. Some events disallow the option to enter Passive Mode after it has begun, until the player is either knocked out through other means or the Event has finished. Passive Mode is also disabled after GTA Online: Further Adventures in Finance and Felony if the player is registered as CEO or an Associate.
Additional rules in both Classic and Enhanced Passive Mode
- There is a 60 second cool-down between exiting passive mode and being able to re-enter passive mode.
- Exiting Passive mode starts a 10-15 [
] second countdown during which the player is no longer passive and able to be targeted but is unable to access their own weapons, presumably to attempt to prevent griefing.
- Passive Mode in enhanced version will go off after the countdown.
- Passive Mode cannot be activated while a bounty is active on the player's head. If a player is about to get a bounty on their head and decides to activate passive mode, the activation of the bounty will be put on hold until passive mode is disabled.
- Players cannot set bounties and call Lamar's mugger or Merryweather's mercenaries on a player that has passive mode activated.
- Rarely, in the enhanced version, entering a vehicle while in passive mode, then re-exiting it will cause the vehicle to stay in its ghost-like appearance, and will remain indestructible.
- In classic passive mode, players who exit their vehicles or activate passive mode with a nearby player will automatically disable passive mode. This is rarely a glitch.
- On the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions, if you try to hit a passive mode player in a very specific way (i.e hit them from a distance or by turning before hitting), they will get knocked over, but not receive any damage.
- In the enhanced version, if a non-Passive Mode player enters a vehicle controlled by a player in Passive Mode, it is possible for a Passive Mode player to kill the non-Passive player such as driving into the gas pump, killing both players in the process though the player in Passive Mode will be credited with a kill. This, however, results in the player who was in Passive Mode to no longer go Passive until he/she does so again.
- Rarely, killing a passive mode player too many times or more will result as a bad sport without a warning.
- Passive Mode is in some ways similar to the "Ghost" status in many games and the non-contact race mode in Races in GTA Online in which the player is practically immune to any severe damage and/or death.