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GTA 5 Gameplay: What We Learned Today

Rockstar Games delivered the first gameplay video for Grand Theft Auto V this morning as promised. The nearly five-minute video tells us a lot about the game's features

We already knew that GTA V's game world was going to be huge. Rockstar previously said that it will be bigger than several of their past games combined. However, this video gives us a good sense of the game's scale. We're treating to numerous shots of the city of Los Santos as well as its surrounding wilderness. Maybe the most impressive moment, though, was when we saw this vertical shot of the mountain outside town. As big as Los Santos itself is, the game world is even bigger:

While I like seeing all of the locales in the game, the video would have been a disappointment. We need to know that the game plays differen in addition to looking different. Fortunately, after a minute or so of footage, Rockstar starts showing off specific features of the game.

They began by looking at character swapping. GTA V has three main characters who will team up to perform heists. In one mission, the player starts out as Michael rappelling down a building. After crashing through a window and taking a businessman hostage, the player swaps to Franklin. As Franklin, the player covers Michael with a sniper rifle as he makes his escape.

During the swap, a list of attributes for each character is visible in the bottom-right corner. These attributes range from physical abilities like stamina and lung capacity to skills like driving, shooting and flying. Presumably these skills will be upgraded over time through gameplay.

Players can swap between characters at will outside of missions as well. When doing so, the camera pans out to an overhead view of Los Santos before then zooming in to the other character. When they're not being played, these characters are living their everyday lives. When the player swaps to Michael, he's finishing up a bike ride with his son. When he swaps to Trevor, he's running away from the police. Each character has their own story, as well as their own minigames. Trevor is seen hunting while Michael plays tennis. I assume there's a large pool of minigames that can be accessed by any character as well.

During the aforementioned car chase, we get a look at the customization options for cars hinted at by Rockstar. Players will be able to choose from 75 different primary colors for the paint job and 26 different wheels. Each vehicle has four attributes: top speed, acceleration, braking, and traction. It's possible that these attributes will change as you swap in different parts.

One of the more amusing side activities in GTA IV was using the in-game web browser. This feature will make a return in GTA V, with new wrinkles. The player can now browse the stock market and buy or sell shares in companies. They can also use a real estate site to buy a new piece of property.

The video closes with a tease of the game's multiplayer mode, called Grand Theft Auto Online. The player looks out his window to see about a dozen players roaming through the city in cars, helicopters and airplanes. Guess we know what the next gameplay video will be showing us.

You can see more scenes from the gameplay video in the gallery below.

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Pete Haas

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.