Grand Theft Auto V returns to San Andreas

[UPDATE] Rockstar confirms details on setting, scope for latest installment in open-world crime series, promises "bold new direction" in storytelling, online multiplayer.

Grand Theft Auto V

Property values in San Andreas are about to plummet, as Rockstar today released the first trailer for Grand Theft Auto V, revealing a return to the Golden State-inspired setting of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

This pest control dude means business.

The trailer features a montage of California-esque sights, such as wind farms on hillsides, muscle beaches, urban squalor, migrant fruit pickers, national parks, sprawling metropolitan areas rife with skyscrapers and shantytowns, and the distinctive sign for the movie-mad city of Vinewood (San Andreas' answer to Hollywood). An unseen protagonist narrates the commercial, explaining why he moved to the area.

"I wanted to retire," he explains, "from what I was doing, you know? From that…that line of work. Be a good guy for once. A family man."

The narrator then expresses a desire to raise his kids as a normal dad but laments, "You know how it is." The trailer also shows glimpses of the series' signature antisocial behavior, with a crew of men dressed as pest-control workers bringing assault rifles into a building, prostitutes chatting with potential tricks, and of course, people fleeing the cops, both by car and on foot.

Grand Theft Auto V has to live up to considerable expectations. Last year, Take-Two Interactive revealed that 2008's Grand Theft Auto IV sold more than 17 million copies worldwide, and the franchise has topped 100 million units sold since its 1998 debut.

[UPDATE]: Rockstar today officially confirmed Grand Theft Auto V was in "full development," and would see the game return to the city of Los Santos "and surrounding hills, countryside and beaches." The developer also said it was the largest game it had ever created and would be focused "on the pursuit of the almighty dollar in a re-imagined, present day Southern California." Rockstar also promised that Grand Theft Auto V would represent a "bold new direction" in mission-based gameplay, storytelling, and online multiplayer.

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