GTA 5 has a pretty big map. It ain't the biggest, but it sure is big, and filled to the brim with content. We could go off on a tangent and speak about how wonderfully crafted this open world is and how vibrant/technically impressive/realistic/etc it is. We could speak about all the various art projects and experiments being conducted within GTA's world - but we did all that already, so we won't.
What we want to speak about today is the part of the map that is most often ignored. Sure, there are a few collectibles tossed down there in single-player, and a few wrecks were littered in it just so it isn't completely and utterly bland when one in a bloody million players goes there just once, but overall, it's like it doesn't exist.
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We are, of course, speaking of the ocean. You know, that big blue thing surrounding the map which you only ever see when Piracy Prevention is on. Yeah, that ocean. Beyond giving a place for yachts to park, there is pretty much no reason for it to exist from a gameplay standpoint, and the yachts were only introduced in Executives and Other Criminals.
Now, we've discussed before how the constant stream of new content via updates is bloating GTA Online to the point where the otherwise large map is starting to be just too small. Sure, the obvious answer to this issue is the addition of new cities, something that is not only highly anticipated, but is (or was, at least) part of Rockstar's official plan, and has recently been rumored to be coming soon.
But where's the logic in tacking another city, which will have its own island and therefore its own under-appreciated body of water, on the game when there are square kilometers of unused sea at your disposal? Making a whole new city, or just updating one of the old ones, would cost a lot of resources. Sure, it would make a pretty big splash too, but done right, so can sea-based DLC.
With the upcoming release of Red Dead Redemption 2, chances are focus will be shifted to that game, however we know for a fact that GTA Online will continue to receive resources. However, we're hoping that this shifting of the spotlight will allow the devs working on the game to get more far-out ideas greenlit. We got a glimpse of what runaway Rockstar designers can do with Cunning Stunts, which remains one of the best DLCs of the game.
Now, with the whole evil CEO thing GTA Online has going (Executives and Other Criminals, Further Adventures in Finance and Felony, Import/Export), why not up the ante and go full-fledged, secret-underwater-base-inhabiting Bond villain? This is the kind of over-the-top stuff GTA does best.
Think about it: you've gained so much cash through your illegal actions that you set your sights on another prize - world domination (because of course you do). Players will have the option to purchase one of, say, 6 different hyper-expensive secret underwater hideouts fully staffed by your own PMC mercenaries.
New "supervillain" contracts would be unlocked, and you can hire henchmen, who are basically associated with better pay, to help you out. You'll need to upgrade your base and construct a number of devious devices with which you can hold the governments of the world hostage.
In terms of gameplay, this would mean that by completing missions, you gain resources needed to craft an arbitrary doomsday device. Once you've built/bought this device, you are given certain privileges in your lobby because essentially you 'rule' the world. This means no police control over the police, for example.
However, this would be temporary. After a certain amount of time passes, a spy will be sent to your hideout to destroy the device. While the spy will always succeed, thus removing the special privileges, the number of upgrades your secret base has determines how often the spies are sent and how much damage they cause.
The damage caused to the device determines two things: how much time is needed to repair it, and how much it will cost. There would be different kinds of devices with different effects, and a nuclear submarine could be the most expensive and effective one.
Naturally, the update would come with a host of new sea-vehicles, ranging from small but elegant boats all the way to actual freaking warships. The new underwater hideouts would be joined by less malicious seaside real estate (and a new property slot). All new jobs and activities would be set on the water.
Upgrades to the secret underwater base would include various security systems, including a tidal wave generator to get rid of pesky players trying to infiltrate your base, allowing you to rain watery doom down on your foes like some tax-evading modern Poseidon.
Naturally, new sea races would be added, and for some truly awesome new gameplay, Rockstar could attempt making sea-based stunt races too, using water vehicles. Weaponized submarines and boats could be used by players of "supervillain" status, and customized to the same extent as Benny's vehicles, but obviously with different kinds of alterations. You're not going to put bobbleheads on a nuclear sub.
Sure, this all may be a tad more out there than the usual GTA Online DLC, but Cunning Stunts proves that sometimes, Rockstar is okay with breaking conventions every now and then, so it's unlikely that such a supervillain DLC would be where they draw the line. The theme would absolutely justify high prices for content (secret underwater bases aren't cheap), and it would utilize a massive chunk of the game's map that's already there without further bloating things in the city or countryside.
Plus, you know, water vehicles would start making sense. If the whole awesome supervillain angle isn't to your liking, you're bound to appreciate that, right?