from the more-like-grand-theft-notto-amirite? dept
You may recall that a couple of months ago we discussed Rockstar and Take2, the game studio and publisher behind the Grand Theft Auto series, taking down a fan-made GTA4 mod that aimed to put all of the cities from previous games in one massive map. While this was a labor of love by dedicated fans of the GTA series, it escaped nobody’s attention that this action was taken on a mod started in 2014 just as Rockstar was about to release GTA Trilogy, consisting of remastered versions of GTA3, Vice City, and San Andreas. The very cities the mod looked to input into GTA4. In other words, the fan project was only shut down when the game companies decided to try to make money off this retro love themselves.
So how’s it going? Well, not too fucking great on the PC side considering that the PC version was pulled down basically everywhere.
Something has gone very, very wrong since yesterday’s launch of GTA Trilogy on PC. As of last night, all mention of a PC version has been removed from Rockstar’s own site, and the Rockstar Games Launcher app has gone completely offline. Anyone who bought the remastered collection before it vanished is currently unable to play.
It has been at least 18 hours since the sudden disappearance of the PC’s GTA Trilogy, and Kotaku can confirm that the Launcher is not working. Which means all Rockstar PC games, including Red Dead Redemption 2 and GTA Online, are currently impossible to play.
You read that right. The PC Rockstar Launcher, responsible for letting gamers play the games they bought, was borked. On Twitter, Rockstar’s support had only been so transparent as to say that the launcher is down due to “maintenance”. Unscheduled or unannounced maintenance, as it turns out. And maintenance that lasted several days. Now, you could get the launcher to work in offline mode… for those who know how to do that. But paying customers were left to figure it out for themselves because Rockstar’s support only sent two tweets out during that downtime with barely any details.
As of Monday, Rockstar finally got its launcher working again and the GTA Trilogy back to being available for purchase and play. But as to what caused all of this, Rockstar is as opaque as ever. Whether something related to the GTA Trilogy title is somehow related to all of this isn’t entirely known…
…but it is the case that people recently bought those titles and couldn’t play them. Bad communication from the company to the public is compounding, at least in this writer’s head, with the effort it put into shutting down a fan-made work and labor of love that would have given GTA fans some retro thrills.
And to make matters a bit stranger, Rockstar had previously delisted its PC version from all 3rd party marketplaces.
For whatever reasons, Rockstar chose to remove all versions of GTAs III, Vice City, and San Andreas from alternative PC stores—including Steam—ahead of this launch, meaning its bespoke software is now the only way to buy and play the games. Or indeed, the only way to not play it.
And so Rockstar customers were left to the tender mercies of a company that doesn’t seem to feel like telling them what’s going on. All while trying to prevent fan-made game mods from being a thing. Not a great look.