Thursday, January 5th, 2012
JAN 05
Grand Theft Auto III: Asked & Answered in Full

Grand Theft Auto III - General News | @ 12:00 PM MDT | By Ash_735

Is Claude a mute?
Rockstar says:
It may now seem obvious that people should all talk in games, but this was not necessarily the case in 2001, certainly not in an open world game. We were making up a lot of procedures as we went along, and we decided that the NPCs (Non Playable Characters) should talk and we would have to figure out how to make them talk (using motion captured cutscenes, something that had never really been done before, at least not on the scale we were doing it). So we decided that the game’s protagonist would not talk, partly to aid people identifying with him, but mostly because we had so many other problems to solve and this did not seem like a major issue. We started to discuss introducing a talking lead character when working on Vice City, but it was a lot of work. While the structure of GTA3 may seem obvious or natural now, and the use of cutscenes made in the game’s engine that look and feel like the game may seem simple and easy, it really was not the case back in 2001 when we had to figure out all of these things for the first time. Oh and in San Andreas, CJ calls Claude a mute because he does not talk and CJ finds this unnerving.

Does Claude speak in THIS trailer?
Rockstar says:
This is fake. This is an old bit of gameplay footage, for sure, but we think the voices were added at a later date by someone online as at no point did we plan for Claude to have a voice or even design how a speaking protagonist would be implemented until Vice City.

What was the inspiration for Claude?
Rockstar says:
There wasn’t any one single inspiration – we just liked the idea of a strong, silent killer, who would be juxtaposed with all of these neurotic and verbose mobsters in an amusing way. He seems stronger and in control, while they seem weaker and frantic.

What is Claude's backstory?
Rockstar says:
He’s a bank robber with a noisy and psychotic girlfriend. More than that, it is hard to say. Definitely a drifter, probably from the west coast, new to Liberty City. Surname may or may not be Speed.

Did Claude kill Maria at the end of Grand Theft Auto III?
Rockstar says:
We're not sure about this. Some think he did, and some think he didn’t. Certainly in an original version of the script, Maria had a longer, really annoying speech, but then someone in the audio department wisely put an end to that. Quite what that means for Maria, who can say.

What's the story with Darkel?
Rockstar says:
Darkel was just a crazy bum who gave you some crazy missions. They were removed a few months before the game was done and long before 9/11 because they just weren’t as good as the rest of the game, and tonally they were a little odd. He started with 5 missions and they were slowly all cut. When only one or 2 were left, they were all removed as the character just didn’t work alongside the other characters.

None of these missions involved blowing up buses of school children although that is a funny rumor!

Any chance we'll ever see the Darkel missions?
Rockstar says:
No. The guys at Rockstar North are far too busy working on future stuff to ever figure out how to fix these old unfinished missions and get them running.

El Burro appears in both Grand Theft Auto 1 and Grand Theft Auto III as well appearing as graffiti in Grand Theft Auto IV, how do the Grand Theft Auto "Universes" work?
Rockstar says:
El Burro is referenced as he was also referenced in GTA 1, so it felt appropriate that he should cross “universes” – the “universes” are the worlds interpreted at different definitions, 2d, 3d and high definition, so we felt brands and radio / back ground characters would exist in both, but 3 dimensional characters would not. This is the logic (as far as it could be considered logical) behind it – so no, we don’t believe any GTA3 characters could exist in the GTA4 universe.

Who is the guy with the baseball bat in the Artwork?
Rockstar says:
He is a character from an early piece of concept art by our long standing character concept artist at Rockstar North, Ian McQue, that Stephen Bliss (who is one of the guys who illustrates our Grand Theft Auto cover art) liked and used to make a cool piece of montage art that embodied the game – we were less concerned with the art really representing characters as much as capturing the vibe of the game – so some of the characters in the art are not necessarily game characters. We did not really think the characters would be such a big deal until after the game came out.

What was changed due to 9/11?
Rockstar says:
About 1% different. We removed only one mission that referenced terrorists and changed a few other cosmetic details – car details, a couple of ped comments, lines of radio dialogue etc – the game came out a very short time later. The biggest change was the US packaging which remixed the previous packaging into what became our signature style – because the previous packaging [which was released as the cover of the game in Europe] was, we felt, too raw after 9/11. All of the more extreme rumours are amusing but impossible to have been achieved in such a short period of time.

Any chance we'll see the content cut due to 9/11?
Rockstar says:
No. As above, it really was not very much stuff – just one mission and other than that some superficial and cosmetic details.

Is Ghost Town meant to be a part of Liberty City?
Rockstar says:
Yes – it is meant to be part of Liberty City.

Why was the Ghost Town Island taken out of the game?
Rockstar says:
We didn’t take an island out of the game. There were only ever the three. We think what people refer to as “ghost town” is just the small area of a city we built for the bank heist scene at the very start of the game. It never had a name, but we wanted it to be somewhere separate from the liberty map and so we built these few streets floating in space and assumed no one would ever find them. We noticed someone built a bridge mod so you can actually drive there now - amazing…

Why is the Dodo difficult to fly?
Rockstar says:
Because we were making a driving and shooting game - even that, as a combination of core gameplay elements, was very, very radical at the time. The Dodo was never meant to be flown very much at all, and it certainly wasn’t grounded as a result of 9/11 – it was just a fun thing that people then went crazy with when they figured out various bugs that let them fly it!

Why were the tunnels on Shoreside Vale blocked off? And where did they lead to?
Rockstar says:
There was never meant to be anything on the other end of the tunnel, we were just playing with ways to make the world feel like it continues past the physical boundary. It’s something that we’ve been pushing in all sorts of ways ever since, making the world you experience as a player feel like it’s part of something bigger. This tunnel was one of our first little baby steps in that direction.

What happened with the Multiplayer in Grand Theft Auto III (as seen leftover in the PC versions files)?
Rockstar says:
We played around with the idea of multiplayer back then but never got very far with it. At the time, we decided to make Vice City instead of dedicating a big team to multiplayer, as we did not feel it would ever really be good enough. When we finally made a multiplayer game, we wanted it to rival the fun and experience of single player, and this was something not possible until much later.

Where did the 'Squish' noise come from?
Rockstar says:
The pedestrian squishing sound was made up from a combination of squelchy sounds that Rockstar North Audio Designer, Allan Walker recorded live (Rockstar North Lead Music Producer, Craig Conner seems to recall crushing fruit and raw chicken in a vocal booth...) and then they added a few more layers from our SFX library.

Is the Ammu-Nation clerk Dan Houser?
Rockstar says:
No, not true. However it does look (but not sound) like a relative of his.

How long was the script for Grand Theft Auto III?
Rockstar says:
They are long. Very long. And they only seem to get bigger with each subsequent Grand Theft Auto production. Check out the image set below which shows a picture of the GTA3 script alongside the GTAIV script for some sense of what we mean.

Viewer Comments
Registered User

Registered: May 2004
Posts: 2,998
I love the last picture in terms of evolution.
01-05-2012 12:11 PM
Registered User

Registered: Jun 2006
Posts: 926
That was a fantastic read, I hope the info on Claude is what they originally intended because it certainly worked for the overall feel of the game
01-05-2012 01:05 PM
Registered User

Registered: May 2006
Posts: 4,426
Some really awesome information from Rockstar.
01-05-2012 02:20 PM
Registered User

Registered: Aug 2003
Posts: 6,204
Thanks to Rockstar for doing all this! Awesome information
01-05-2012 04:55 PM
Registered User

Registered: Nov 2004
Posts: 329
We've come a long way, GTA. Great stuff!
01-05-2012 06:31 PM
Registered User

Registered: May 2004
Posts: 2,998
I called that tunnel-bullshit ages ago btw.

Posted this oct 1 2005

"When will people know that the ghost town is only, and only there for the cutscene. It was never meant to be a 4th island or carser or carson city or whatever... damn. The tunnels aren't closed becouse of the robbery, and they lead to nothing, they have no meaning. Not in GTA III, and i doubt they'll have in GTA LCS, the only reason they were there, to make a sort of connection, that liberty city is stuck to the mainland."
01-09-2012 12:15 PM
Registered User

Registered: Oct 2004
Posts: 80
The script picture would be more amazing if 2000 pages weren't "Hey Niko, lets go bowling!"
01-09-2012 05:56 PM
Registered User

Registered: Sep 2009
Posts: 256
That was gret. A very informative article that helped close some loops in the rumour mill. Nicely done R*!
01-09-2012 06:06 PM

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