How to turn GTA San Andreas into GTA 5 with mods

A guide on how to transform GTA San Andreas into GTA 5 with mods (Image via Rockstar Games)
A guide on how to transform GTA San Andreas into GTA 5 with mods (Image via Rockstar Games)

GTA San Andreas, a two-decade-old game from Rockstar, is still enjoyable today, especially with mods. In fact, modders have managed to somewhat bridge the gap between San Andreas and GTA 5, the latest Grand Theft Auto title. This may sound ambitious, and it would've been so even a few years ago, but there are many mods available now that make it possible.

Here in this article, we've put together a list of mods and the steps you need to follow to transform one of the oldest Grand Theft Auto titles into the newest one. You'll find the names of each mod, as well as an explanation for what they do.


Step-by-step modding guide to turn GTA San Andreas into GTA 5

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YouTuber GRIZZLY BEAR, who is known for making comparison videos of Grand Theft Auto games, has created a brief guide on how they transformed GTA San Andreas into GTA 5. Here are the list of mods you need and what they do:

Map: The first thing you'll need is a map mod that brings over the Grand Theft Auto 5 map to San Andreas. The above video doesn't mention the name, but we can assume that it's Grand Theft Auto: ViSA. It should be noted that this mod was last updated in 2016, and it's not perfect. There are invisible holes in several parts of the map, and the NPC and traffic pathing is glitched.

Graphics: When it comes to graphics, you can install the DirectX 3.0 mod, which adds high quality lighting with realistic godrays, improved reflections, and even volumetric clouds.

What's most impressive about the mod is the rain effect. Storm clouds and ripples look extremely realistic, and the puddle reflections are quite believable as well. One drawback of the mod is that it applies a glossy effect to vehicles that aren't supposed to have it, like the Hydra.

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Vehicles: The vehicles are the most important part of any GTA game, and these can be replaced with a vehicle pack that brings over several GTA 5 vehicles to San Andreas. Now, there are several different mods in this category, so choose whichever you like. You can also choose to add some of the new cars, like the Turismo Omaggio from GTA Online.

These have to be added manually, as there aren't any packs that have been updated with the latest online cars. You can also add a handling mod, and there are multiple options here as well, with the most popular choice being Realistic Handling v6.91.

Skins and animations: Converting San Andreas to Grand Theft Auto 5 would be incomplete without bringing over the heroes. There are skin mods for all three protagonists — Michael, Trevor, and Franklin — but they won't spawn in the game world at the same time. An animation mod like Natural Parkour Animation Pack will also make the title feel more modern.

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HUD: The GTA V HUD mod by _AG is the most accurate for San Andreas, but if you want a more stable mod with less issues, you can pick the HUD mod from DK22Pac.

The former attempts to replace all menus and UI elements with that of Grand Theft Auto 5, such as the main menu, store menus, the weapon radar, the mobile, and even the black and white map. The latter instead only uses a square radar, a circular weapon wheel, and some stat menus like that of Grand Theft Auto 5.

Physics: The newer Grand Theft Auto titles use ragdoll physics, and this can be applied to San Andreas with Ragdoll Bullet Physics. Unfortunately, this mod only works on NPC peds, and not on any objects, or even the player character.

Camera: You'll definitely want to install a first-person camera mod for simulating an authentic Grand Theft Auto 5 experience, and the best choice here is First Person V3.0 (Fixed).

Other mods: Finally, you can also add some additional mods for converting Grand Theft Auto San Andreas into Grand Theft Auto 5. For instance, there are many weapon texture packs and countless other optional mods that improve the gameplay. You can find a large list of working mods from MixMods, as they have a section dedicated to conversion mods (https://www.mixmods.com.br/gta-sa/v-to-sa/).


Check our related Grand Theft Auto mod articles:

New Liberty City Stories mod || San Andreas immersive RPG mod || San Andreas USA map mod || San Andreas prequel mod || Mod brings snow to Liberty City || Modders remastering Vice City

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Edited by Abu Amjad Khan