Grand Theft Auto Online details leak before launch

By Luke Caulfield , Updated Oct 01, 2013 12:10 AM EDT
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It's always nice when Rockstar recognizes the fans, especially the ones dedicated to running a fan-site dedicated to the game series that helped put the company on the map. But it's even nicer when that fan decides to share the sum of their experience with the rest of the world.

Such was the case for Chris Phillips, who heads up TheGTAPlace.com, one of the most frequented GTA fan sites out there today. Rockstar invited Phillips and a number of other GTA webmasters to New York to experience Grand Theft Auto Online firsthand. When you run a website dedicated to a particular game, sitting on that kind of exclusive information is a difficult endeavor. Now, as big as TheGTAPlace is, Phillips headed to a place where he knew his information would be valued: Reddit.

Phillips played host to an AMA on the site, and shared some intriguing details about his experience, and GTA Online as a whole. We have the highlights below. You may have seen some of the information before, but it warrants mentioning in case some of you haven't. Yes, there are spoilers:

- Phillips was "pretty sure" all the clothes shops and tattoo parlours are open from the start
- you choose the appearance of your four grandparents, which in turn generates your own character's look. But nothing is set in stone, and certain appearances can later be customized
- properties can be purchased at "8 or 9," and include apartments and normal houses
- the bigger the house you buy, the bigger the garage it has, ergo, smaller ones will only store 2 cars while bigger ones will store up to 10
- other players are visible on the radar
- playing in passive mode, other players are shown on radar with a line through their blip
- there's a cost to enter passive mode
- most missions require at least 2 players, some can have up to 8
- many weapons aren't unlocked right from the start, and require earning ranks to be accessed
- earning money is fairly easy - something as petty as store robberies can net $3000 to $6000
- you can string robberies together, but this could be difficult as a robery yield an automatic 2 star wanted level
- methods of earning XP include doing jobs, missions, losing wanted levels, doing robberies, killing people, and more
- certain methods require headset communication between players -"Rally racing pretty much requires both players to be using their headset. The driver has no directions on the map so has no idea where to go. The co-driver will get arrows flashing up on their screen (like left, or right) when they need to make a turn, so the co-driver will need to tell the driver this information"
- players can host impromptu races
- there are unique activities that are only available online, one of which is arm wrestling
- multiplayer character's money is completely separate from the three main character's in single player
- it costs $10 to call a friend/person in your server  

Phillips explained his experience in further detail here. Grand Theft Auto Online launches bright and early, 7AM, October 1.

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