grand theft auto VI toronto

The next Grand Theft Auto game is coming and everyone wants it to be set in Toronto

The creators of one of the biggest video game franchises of all time have confirmed that a new title is in development, and there's a growing movement to bring the controversial Grand Theft Auto series, or GTA, right here to the Greater Toronto Area, also known by the same acronym.

Developer Rockstar Games threw long-salivating fans of the series a bone this week with news that the long-awaited Grand Theft Auto VI is finally in the works, though it may be quite some time before the series returns to consoles and computer screens.

If you're not familiar with the high-octane, blood-soaked video game series, well, it's a pretty big deal. Few franchises are held in such high regard, and arguably no other title has the ability to drum up such a mix of admiration and outrage from fans and concerned parents.

GTA is the fifth-highest-grossing video game franchise of all time, falling short of only the heaviest-hitting franchises like Tetris, Call of Duty, Super Mario, and Pokémon. And all of these franchises have more instalments than GTA, known for going unbearably long stretches between new titles.

The games are known for their cinematic production values, excessive violence, sex, and drug use, but one of the most intriguing aspects of the series' 21st-century instalments (earlier GTA titles were much more arcade-style in gameplay) are the rich, explorable representations of real-world cities with tongue-in-cheek renamings of well-known locales and landmarks.

It's been close to a decade since the last instalment in the franchise was released, though that 2013 title is still thriving through an active online multiplayer and numerous downloadable content releases.

And this whole time, Canadian fans of the series have been pushing for the next release to travel north of the border to Toronto, but calls grew exponentially louder this week when Rockstar Games dropped their latest hint at the series' future.

It seems like a perfect fit, with not just the Grand Theft Auto/Greater Toronto Area connection, but also the VI or "6" in the title.

Of course, Grand Theft Auto games never actually use the real names of their inspiration cities, with locations like Liberty City (NYC), Vice City (Miami), Los Santos (Los Angeles), San Fierro (San Francisco), and Las Venturas (Las Vegas). So even if the names are a good fit, any depiction of the Toronto region in Rockstar Games' alternate universe would be renamed.

But that hasn't stopped a deluge of similar comments from pouring in on social media, with many clearly hungry to see their home city represented in a dramatized world of chaos and destruction — at least more of it than we're already accustomed to in this town.

It isn't hard to imagine a Dar Robinson-style jump off the CN Tower completely armed to the teeth, or causing general mayhem on a dramatized version of the TTC's iconic streetcar fleet.

Rockstar Games does have a Canadian presence, and earlier GTA titles have taken place outside the states like London, U.K., but to cool your expectations a bit, every 21st-century release in the series has taken place in the U.S., a trend likely to continue with GTA VI.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau

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