Rockstar on GTAV: "We've considered the placement of every tree"

Art director Aaron Garbut says upcoming game "levels of magnitude" above Grand Theft Auto IV in terms of environmental elements.

The sprawling open-world in Grand Theft Auto V won't only be the largest Rockstar Games has ever created, but also the most finely detailed, according to art director Aaron Garbut.

"In terms of raw man-hours, this has been way in excess of any project we've done at Rockstar before. From the outset, we wanted to ensure that not only was the world big but that it was absolutely packed with character and life," Garbut told Buzzfeed. "It's levels of magnitude above Grand Theft Auto IV in terms of what we've done on the environment side."

Garbut admitted that, geographically speaking, there are games larger than GTAV, but none are bigger in terms of content, he said.

"I want to stress that not only is this world huge but it’s absolutely handcrafted. Every little bit of this world has had a large number of extremely talented artists pore over it," he said. "There's always something to discover, something weird or interesting to see or interact with. It's absolutely not a massive, empty world. We've considered the placement of every tree."

Garbut explained that Rockstar has not copied buildings around the map or procedurally generated terrain to "pad it out." He said Rockstar has put so much effort into handcrafting every element that he does not think many players will ever see everything the studio has created.

"That in itself, though, means that most people will have different experiences," Garbut said. "In terms of process, other than plain old hard work, this has just been an incredibly iterative process where a large number of us have existed in this world for years now and wherever we could, we've added more depth and interest. What we've got at the end is I think something quite new. We used to call Liberty City a living, breathing world, but this is way beyond anything we've done before."

GTAV launches September 17 for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Rockstar will release the first official trailer and details for the game's online mode on Thursday.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

856 comments
ScouseMelon
ScouseMelon

Well, I've been throwing my money at the T.V but nothing is happening! What gives??

csward
csward

Well now I want it even more.

RobDev
RobDev

Why? why bother, every damn tree you individually planted took time and resources away form game play and AI.

SpinDie25
SpinDie25

Considered the placement of every tree eh? So if i crash into a tree and die does that make rockstar an accessory to murder?

DeViLzzz
DeViLzzz

When a tree falls in the forest in GTA V does anybody hear it ?

razor_rj
razor_rj

"It's absolutely not a massive, empty world" small jab at just cause 2 ?

ddoggbritt16
ddoggbritt16

the only thing that would kill this game is if they take away cheat codes


Pelezinho777
Pelezinho777

More important question is what level of interactivity players will have with all that rich and moderated world? If everything sets with "it's looking nice", then...all for nothing!

tightwad34
tightwad34

So it's way beyond anything you have done before? I've heard that one before, but in this case I actually believe you because you are truly Rock*s.

1blackone
1blackone

You know what would be REALLY impressive?

If you could--maybe even in just single-player--hurl a 7 ton fighter jet  going 300 hundred miles an hour at a small tree and something happens TO THE TREE.

JachAnen
JachAnen

If they are trying to do better than GTA IV. They are doing it right, but could do better.
If they are trying to do better than GTA SA. They are doing it right and should keep on going that way because SA was their masterpiece so far, and IV is the most disappointing one.

N12K
N12K

Did anyone else think Farcry 3 when they saw the first image?

NTM23
NTM23

That's cool.

Justin Roane
Justin Roane

Why would they release all their games on PC except this one? Curious.

Ian Vance
Ian Vance

I'd recommend 8GB of RAM and maybe overclock that 2500k to 3.6Ghz or more just because. The CPU overclocking is probably unnecessary, but the 8GB of RAM is probably a good idea. Do that and it'll run fine. That is... IF they make GTA V for PC.

James Roberts-Martin
James Roberts-Martin

fallout new vegas ultimate edition, hitman absolution, and cod: bo 2 was on bluray for pc

Ian Vance
Ian Vance

James, no. As much sense as that would make, most people don't have a bluray drive.

Zxar07
Zxar07

Great, only thing that could make this game better is custom soundtracks, not saying GTA has horrible music it just can't be streamed so it'll be the same tracks all the time. I really want to listen to some Nujabes or Fat Jon when I'm driving at night. Particularly, Genome.


And I'm talking about an actual radio station where my music just plays so it doesn't break the immersion, not that play over the game loudly crap even when a cutscene is playing. But like San Andreas had in the Xbox version.

krayzie88
krayzie88

Man these articles aint making the wait any easier for me.

DAMN U AUGUST. SPEED UP WILL YA!!

Dark_Dante22
Dark_Dante22

This game is going to break every (positive) video game record that exists

OldDirtyCR
OldDirtyCR

@RobDev You obviously know nothing about development or how businesses work in general so stop commenting on it.

 Artists do not code AI. Programmers do. So how the hell does having Artists work on their part of the game mean time has been taken away from gameplay and AI?

 On the resource side, you have no idea the budget of this game. So that comment is equally dumb. Game's of this scope are not made by a single person. It's not a constant battle for time. You have hundreds of people each working on their specific task.

RobDev
RobDev

@razor_rj I wouldn't have thought they would even consider Just Cause 2 a rival.

Crush_Project
Crush_Project

@ddoggbritt16 lol cheat codes are for nubs, the only thing that could ruin gta is if the physics are as borked as gta 4.

RickyFalcOne
RickyFalcOne

@1blackone  brings me back to the days of GTA 3 when some of the bushes you could drive through  and the others were harder than a car goin 80 mph and you would just bounce back

Warful
Warful

@nait2k4 He probably can't connect with the main characters, they are too shady leaving their houses late at night. 8/10.

YummyMango
YummyMango

@JachAnen I am glad there are still gamers like you out there who agree with my sentiments. GTA SA was pure blast and GTA 4 was a pile of horse shit. 

Kevlar101
Kevlar101

@N12K I thought Skyrim.   Hehe.... *feels like a fool*

OldDirtyCR
OldDirtyCR

@Justin Roane Go look at all the release dates for GTA games. PC always took at least 5-12 months more than the initial console versions

Hordriss
Hordriss

@Zxar07 Agree 100%, the Xbox version of San Andreas has the best custom radio of any game I've played.  I loved GTAIV, but was disappointed that the custom radio was a massive step down from what they'd managed to do with a game on the previous console.

Viral-venom13
Viral-venom13

@Zxar07  

Agreed, it's the exact  thing i've been stressing over at their website for some time now!!

el_swanno
el_swanno

Good news: it's already August. Personally I'm waiting for September 17.

zhurnivuurg
zhurnivuurg

@Dark_Dante22 

Best JRPG 2013: Grand Theft Auto V

xeoneex66
xeoneex66

@Dark_Dante22 While I know this game is going to break alot of records, it's not going to break EVERY record.  But it's going to be a DAMN good game!

abramburic
abramburic

@Crush_Project I'm 100% agree with you! Exactly like you said, cheats are for nubs so, leave him be...

Crush_Project
Crush_Project

@beardface21 your not exactly understanding the point professor but whatever...