GTA 5 has its share of callbacks and references to older games in the franchise, with Grove Street being one of them. Any callback or reference sparks speculation about the connections made or the characters' continued appearances. Some of these theories are correct, but not always.
With Grove Street appearing in one of Grand Theft Auto 5's missions, "Hood Safari", there were various theories which seemed to have misled a lot of players. GTA: San Andreas revolved around the protagonist protecting his hood in Grove Street, and the location shown in GTA 5 with the same name looked a lot different.
This article will focus on why the location shown in GTA 5 is not the same location as the one that fans of San Andreas loved and still remember fondly.
GTA 5 is not a sequel to GTA San Andreas, as many players were misled to believe
One of the most decorated games in the Grand Theft Auto franchise, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas got its happily ever after ending after Tenpenny crashed his getaway vehicle outside CJ's family home, where he died from his injuries. CJ was left in control of his neighborhood, and the game ended with the riots eventually over.
When Grove Street reappeared in Grand Theft Auto 5, many players were led to believe the neighborhood had a rather sad ending with Easter eggs indicating CJ's family never won.
Grove Street in GTA 5
The Easter eggs left for players to discover during Grand Theft Auto 5's mission in Grove Street were obvious. As players enter the street, three characters that resemble CJ, Smoke and Sweet can be seen leaving the streets on bikes, just as they do in the game. Chasing them has no effect on the game.
The street was also made to look quite similar to how it was in San Andreas. What's different from the game is the sheer amount of graffiti all over the street. The abundance of graffiti around led many to believe that the Ballas mobs eventually regained control from CJ. That, however, is not always the case.
Several characters have appeared in various timelines and games, but Rockstar Games has made certain that each universe is distinct from the others. Although Ballas did not take over Grove Street at the end of San Andreas, in an alternate universe, they would have won and taken over the entire hood.
With GTA 5, Rockstar chose to show a completely different Grove Street, with CJ most probably not being a part of the game that came out after Grand Theft Auto: SA. The assumption that Grand Theft Auto 5 did not have its version of CJ could mean Ballas has no rivals in this timeline, so gangbanging continued in the hood.
Lamar and Franklin are even seen discussing what happened to the people of Grove Street in Grand Theft Auto 5. Lamar is seen telling Franklin that the majority of them quit gangbanging, left the hood, and most likely became CEOs and became very wealthy. Lamar then tells Franklin that he aspires to be just as wealthy as Franklin.
All that being said, it's a clear indication that the Grove Street seen in Grand Theft Auto 5 isn't the same as the one from San Andreas. The throwback, however, was a good nostalgic moment for fans of the franchise to return to a memorable location.