Few franchises have carved out a significant cultural and commercial impact like Grand Theft Auto. Fans worldwide are eagerly waiting for every bit of information about the next entry in the series, Grand Theft Auto 6. Now, an intriguing piece of information from a well-regarded insider has given us a clue about what Rockstar Games is planning for GTA 6 and its multiplayer component.
Tez2, a trusted source within the GTA community, shares that the development team will be sticking to the non-dedicated server model for the online portion of GTA 6.
Rockstar's parent company, Take-Two Interactive, made the strategic decision not to invest in dedicated servers for GTA Online, presumably due to cost considerations, many years ago. Such a decision exemplifies Take-Two's careful and calculated approach to guaranteeing the long-term viability of each GTA installment.
Unfortunately, this rumored decision in respect of the next version of GTA Online isn't currying GTA 6 any favors from fans. A problem this might create in GTA 6 is the continued presence of in-game issues in GTA Online, which continue to persist in today's version. But, Rockstar has been actively and consistently working on resolving these issues, demonstrating its commitment to their player base.
It's worth noting that while dedicated servers are common in gaming, they're not a perfect solution. The added financial burden is an issue, especially since such servers still don't 100% guarantee server uptime. Besides, GTA Online and others, like Destiny 2, have flourished without dedicated servers. Bungie, the makers of Destiny, for example, relies on using complex networking systems, much to the satisfaction of their communities.
Rockstar might feel confident that it can develop a similar solution if it hasn't already. If this is the case, then the lack of dedicated servers might not have any impact on the overall player experience in GTA 6 Online at all.
One way of looking at the decision not to implement dedicated servers is an innovative if brave strategy. It proves that Take-Two and Rockstar are confident that they can deliver an engaging and reliable online experience without resorting to the norm. After all, if GTA 5 sold over 180 million copies since 2013 without dedicated servers, why won't GTA 6 have the same amount of success?
Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick's recent statements suggest that GTA 6 could be released anytime between mid-2024 and late 2025. This timeline gives Rockstar enough time to perfect the server situation for GTA 6 and/or explore better networking solutions.