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[Update: Rockstar has denied that the game supports 32 players]
Grand Theft Auto V has officially launched for the Xbox 360 and PS3. Before the game launched on console it was leaked to torrents just four days out from launch. During that time, crackers managed to dump the assets of the game from the 360 version and post some of the details online.
We've had an increasingly intense brush-in with Rockstar's legal department with some of the stuff we've been posting, so as a full disclosure before proceeding: I'm not allowed to post up images of the code, links directly to the images of the code or reprint, retype or broadcast direct lines of the code to the public. This keeps Cinema Blend in business and it keeps Rockstar's legal cronies happy. We all sort of win... yadda, yadda, yadda.
So if any of you who have been following our escapades into the leaked data of Grand Theft Auto V, you will know that originally XML config files pointed to a PS4 and PC version of the game. We also were tipped off by reader Leon Lien about the iFruit app containing references for PC assets, and following that, new information has leaked relating to PC exclusive features not available in the current gen console version of GTA V.
Instead of relying on images, PNG files and reddit posts based on 4Chan finds, I was tipped off to the actual files of the dumped version of GTA V and have been sifting through them. It's the “common” file folder that contains most of the basic configuration data for multiple platforms.
While looking through the files the “Orbis” does show up in the game's general configuration settings but most of the data is empty, so it looks like the references may have been added at the last minute or aren't complete. What is complete are the multiplayer modes and some of the activities players can participate in.
Scouring through the network configuration settings shows a number of administration tools and options that will be available. Given that this is the Xbox 360's configuration settings it surprised me to see that the game will support a max number of 32 players, even though the box indicates a max of 16 players. For those of you who have the “common” folder you'll find it in an XML for the network options – you can look through the files if you need verification.
In addition to player limit, the game will feature a “Freemode” for one through 32 players and no team options.
A co-op mode is also available, it only supports two-players and I assume this is for the GTA Online story mode. But I don't know, so don't quote me on co-op only being for story mode, it could be like Saints Row where it's just a limit of two-players and you can just run around and do stuff... I don't know.
A free-for-all “Deathmatch” or “DM” mode is also present. Again, it supports up to 32 players – or so, that's what the configuration file is showing.
A “Team Deathmatch” or “TDM” mode is also present. It supports 32 players and a max of two teams.
A “Races” mode is available, again, 32 players.
There's a reference to a multiplayer test bed, but I don't think it's an actual game mode. I could be wrong, though.
A “CnC” or “Cops and Crooks” mode is also present. It looks like there are two gang options and a cop option. It also shows support for up to 32 players. However, I'm almost under the impression that this is the max threshold and that there will be other limitations put in place so that all 32 players aren't actually playing. Then again, who knows, maybe Rockstar found a magical way to host that many players on the current gen home consoles?
The last option from out of the lobby menu is for the mission creator launcher.
One other thing worth noting is that it looks like it has an automatic filter for people who go AFK. Again, I could be wrong but there's a flag that checks for player activity, so I would assume this is what it would be used for.
Things really get interesting in an XML for the mission scripts. In this file it's possible to parse through and see what's playable and what's not in single and multiplayer modes.
**Warning: Mission Spoilers Ahead**
There is a mission for something called “Battle Buddies”, where you can call your friends in to back you up during a mission. That seems kind of cool.
There's a cinema mode for single-player, but in another file I spotted flags for a multiplayer version of the cinema mode, so I'm assuming this is like the Cinema Mode in Garry's Mod where multiple players can head to a theater and watch the in-game movies. It would be really awesome if this could be used to watch videos from the Rockstar Social Network.
There is a fairground script where you can go ride on rides and stuff.
There are multiple entries for military and prison activities, one of which includes having to snipe off an army guy at a military base. The flags seem to indicate that it's a Cops and Crooks mission.
There are a number of “Arrest” flags, where players who are in the role of a cop will be required to arrest select NPCs or other players.
Another Cops and Crooks mission seems really cool – a crook is assigned a task to assassinate another player who is online (could be either a cop or a criminal) and it's up to the cops to track him down and stop him. This seems like something straight out of APB: Reloaded.
There's another mission that describes stealing a boat and boarding another enemy boat. Crooks must eliminate all the baddies on the enemy boat before the cops arrive.
Another CnC mission involves blowing up a strip club with a car bomb. There are some coordinates for the strip club, so it looks like this mission is preset and will not randomize to different locations. There's also an odd flag noting frame-rate issues that drops down to 14fps. If that's how low it gets during multiplayer then... ouch.
There's also a really awesome asynchronous mission for CnC where your cash can get stolen by other crooks if they crash your safe house. It's like in APB: Reloaded where you steal a bunch of a stuff and if you're not careful another criminal or the enforcers can “witness” you and steal your stuff. The only difference here is that they can attack your safe house and grab your loot.
Also, much like APB: Reloaded there is a sort of prestige meter for cops; if a cop does too terrible on a series of missions they'll be relegated to lowbie missions until they redeem themselves.
(Side note: It looks like Rockstar really studied APB: Reloaded to see what worked and what doesn't and shaped their CnC mode around a lot of what actually works and works well in APB: Reloaded)
Cops can also use the scanner to check license plates for stolen vehicles. If a player is driving a stolen vehicle a squad car may be assigned to arrest them.
Cops also get a locker room where they can change their police clothes, it seems to suggest there are ranks for different outfits.
Cops have a special mission where they are assigned to do "fetch" quests. The wording of the script appears to suggest that this is a low-level mission and maybe something assigned to a player of a low reputation.
Cops also have "territories" to patrol. Patrolling the correct territory for crime will reward the cop; the wording suggests that this is similar to APB's Prestige system and the more the rules are followed the higher the rewards.
Parsing through the rest of the file shows some missions that haven't been added or won't be used, as well as all the main mission scripts.
Based on this file, majority of the multiplayer missions are centered around the Cops and Crooks mode, which makes sense given that the LCPD patrols are easily some of the most popular multiplayer “Let's Play” videos on YouTube for GTA IV. It only makes sense that Rockstar would introduce a similar mode like that as the primary focus of GTA Online. Based on the file structure it also looks like more activities could be added in, but the majority of the content is designed for CnC.
I'm still a little leery about that 32 player limit – I'm not sure how they'll squeeze that out of current gen consoles, but maybe it's based on proximity and only 16 players are actually allowed in close quarters? I don't know. I guess we'll find out on October 1st.
Thanks to Leon Lien and the guys and gals of the GTAforums for the tips.