Yesterday was the twenty fifth anniversary of Grand Theft Auto 1’s launch, and it seems that not everybody was satisfied the collection had a future forward of it again in 1997. In actual fact, GTA was the undertaking voted “most certainly to not succeed” by devs at DMA Design (the studio now generally known as Rockstar North). It now makes half a billion {dollars} a 12 months from GTA On-line alone. I suppose hindsight is 20/20.

The story comes from a BBC interview with Colin Macdonald, a former DMA dev who joined the corporate a number of months earlier than it shipped GTA 1. Apparently, the temper across the studio was fairly sombre, a minimum of insofar as GTA was involved. Macdonald stated that, “mid-development, the path of the game wasn’t clear. It was additionally fairly buggy—you could not play it for greater than a few minutes with out it crashing”—which GTA On-line gamers would possibly recommend hasn’t modified a lot—and that “at grassroots stage there wasn’t quite a lot of confidence in [GTA 1]”.

Macdonald stated that the temper across the workplace had truly began to select up across the time he joined, since GTA was virtually finished and the staff was “truly fairly blissful as a result of that they had sort of bought shot of it”. 

In equity to DMA, it isn’t fairly the case that the devs have been able to chuck GTA within the dustbin of historical past. As a substitute, they have been trying ahead to beginning with a clear slate on GTA 2, avoiding the pitfalls and frustrations that had made the primary game’s improvement such a dispiriting quagmire. Nonetheless, it is in all probability honest to say that nobody at DMA again then would have believed you when you’d advised them what a gravity-warping, light-bending titan the GTA collection would find yourself changing into.

Nowadays, in fact, we’re all nonetheless processing the fallout of the big GTA 6 leak that passed off earlier this 12 months, which revealed two playable characters, a Vice Metropolis setting, and entailed an FBI investigation and the arrest of a 17 year-old hacker. Name me a pessimist, however I am unsure a leak of GTA 1 supplies 25 years in the past would have entailed a world prison investigation and mainstream information protection. How occasions change.