How Grand Theft Auto Led the Charge for Urban Video Gaming

How Grand Theft Auto Led the Charge for Urban Video Gaming

Grand Theft Auto V Launch Trailer” (CC BY 2.0) by BagoGames

Through the decades, Rockstar Games has helped to shine a spotlight on urban culture thanks to its hugely successful Grand Theft Auto video game franchise. Grand Theft Auto V remains the third best-selling video game of all time, with the 2013 release generating sales of more than 95 million copies worldwide. GTA, as the fans know it, has drawn heavily upon gang culture and was embraced by street gang members who felt it was a realistic depiction of urban life for many with underprivileged upbringings.

While some argue that the GTA franchise has caused millions of gamers around the world to have a flippant attitude towards gang culture and crime, it can also be a positive, helping to open the eyes of others to urban life. GTA: San Andreas was a game which truly represented the ‘hood’ and gave those in urban environments a video game where they could truly relate to the characters involved.

When you consider that Grand Theft Auto V was named by Empire as the eighth greatest video game of all time, it’s clear that even those not related to urban culture find the streets a fascinating place. The success of the GTA franchise helped to glamorise urban culture to the extent that iGaming software developers also wanted a piece of the action. The Hotline video slot, developed by NetEnt, features a super-slick synth soundtrack set in the 1980s era of Miami Vice when crime was rife on the streets. Hotline, which is a popular title on the portfolio of games offered at Hopa Casino, is a full-throttle retro urban experience. If you’ve never played at Hopa Casino before, it’s a good idea to read these tips for Hopa players and information on their $200 deposit bonuses before channelling your inner Don Johnson.

saints row 2” (CC BY 2.0) by yellowblade67

Volition also developed a popular franchise based on street culture called Saints Row. This has often competed head-on with GTA in terms of the most accurate depiction of urban life. Saints Row arguably places an even heavier emphasis on urban warfare, with the protagonist character part of a hip-hop cultured street gang known as the 3rd Street Saints. Contrary to popular belief, the success of GTA and Saints Row in driving sales of urban-themed video games wasn’t solely to due the glamorisation of gang culture. The accuracy of their depictions has to be applauded, helping to bring to light some of the core societal issues within big city areas. By taking it back to the streets, just like Papoose has, there’s a chance that some kind of positive change can happen.

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