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Top 5 reasons why GTA 5 still has a massive playerbase in 2021

GTA 5 was always destined for greatness (Image via Rockstar Games)
GTA 5 was always destined for greatness (Image via Rockstar Games)
Rahul Bhushan

It will be a while before the community has new games to talk about when it comes to the GTA franchise, as Rockstar Game's schedule currently looks pretty tight. With a remastered edition of GTA 5 on the horizon, the publisher sits comfortably on a large pile of profit that only seems to be getting taller.

It would be a massive understatement to suggest that GTA 5 is a successful game as there simply is no close relative, apart from Tetris and Minecraft, maybe. Yet, it seems almost puzzling how Rockstar managed to pull off this massive feat.

However, upon closer inspection, it seems pretty obvious that GTA 5 was destined to become the industry juggernaut that it has become. Here are a few potential reasons why the game continues to boast of a large player base that keeps growing by the year.


Five main reasons for GTA 5 still having a massive playerbase in 2021

#5 - Brand name and instant appeal

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Rockstar, over two decades, has been able to cultivate a brand that has been nigh on unrivaled. The GTA franchise isn't just a massively successful game franchise; it's nothing less than a cultural phenomenon that defies all previously held notions of how successful a video game can be.

According to analysts, GTA 5 alone has generated more revenue than any other media form (books, music, movies, etc.). This fact is mind-boggling and a testament to just how big the entire series has become.

That sort of financial success doesn't just come off a massive marketing budget, but it takes brilliant games, polished and iterated to a great degree. Each title in the franchise is impeccable, with each launch coming off extremely smoothly with minor issues, at the worst.

While there have been controversies at Rockstar relating to crunch and an extremely taxing work environment, the games themselves have rarely ever given room for massive complaints.


#4 - GTA Online and RP

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GTA Online might just be the single most profitable product that Rockstar has ever released. A recent report by Take-Two Interactive detailed that it has generated more revenue in December 2020 than any other period since its launch.

Although not unheard of, that sort of continued success is extremely rare and contributes to GTA 5 being a dominant presence in the industry. However, recently, another mod-based trend seems to have taken over hugely and shot the game back to the top of every platform's streaming charts.

GTA RP or Roleplaying is essentially servers that offer a Roleplaying experience through a combination of mods unique to each server. Streamers regularly frequent these servers, which usually have a strict application process.

RP has given rise to a whole new genre for GTA gamers and an entirely new way to experience the game that perhaps no one could have predicted.


#3 - Modding community

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In tandem with the previous point, the modding community for GTA 5 has been single-handedly responsible for all the content one can watch on YouTube and other platforms about the game.

Mods are not only useful for casual audiences to enjoy and tweak their game to include new features, characters, or skins but also as a way to create content. Streamers have capitalized on these mods' potential to allow for creative content and found significant success on YouTube, Twitch, and other platforms.

This brings the game into the limelight and entices audiences who perhaps haven't played the game to try it out.


#2 - Endless replayability and value for money

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Because the game came out in 2013, chances are, players can pick up a physical or digital copy of GTA 5 for much less than $60. They can easily pick up a massive AAA game for the price of a small indie title and still have 30+ hours of content and infinite replayability in Online.

While game length isn't the only parameter by which players generally make an informed purchase, the game's unmistakable quality is also a significant factor. GTA 5 represents, in the casual audience's eye, the most quintessential AAA game that offers immense value for money and rightly so.

The game is exceptionally well-made and polished. The positive word of mouth eventually gets around, thus providing a marketing push that no amount of social media ads and billboards can get.


#1 - Multiple releases

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The fact remains that GTA 5 initially came out in 2013 and has since seen a remastered release for the PS4 and Xbox One. The game is now scheduled for another remaster for next-gen consoles: PS5 and the Xbox Series X.

To think that a title could be released on three different generations of consoles would be blasphemous. Seeing how successful the game has been and continues to be, Rockstar is making the only logical move.

With a release, remaster, or a full-fledged game, the hype surrounding it tends to intensify, and players who haven't played the game in a while might want to give it a try on new consoles out of sheer curiosity.


Edited by Ravi Iyer

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