GTA V is 100% handcrafted,has unlimited draw distance
In an interview released to Buzzfeed, Aaron Garbut, who has been Rockstar North‘s Art Director since GTA III, talked extensively about the upcoming GTA V. According to him, the game world is completely handcrafted despite being absolutely huge, with a result far superior to that of GTA IV.
I want to stress that not only is this world huge but it’s absolutely handcrafted. Every little bit of this world has had a large number of extremely talented artists pore over it. There’s always something to discover, something weird or interesting to see or interact with. It’s absolutely not a massive, empty world. We’ve considered the placement of every tree. We’ve simply not copied buildings around the map or procedurally generated the terrain to pad it out. It’s all handcrafted, all unique, and we’ve gone over it all again and again and again to make sure there’s enough layering of detail that I don’t think many people will ever see everything we’ve put into the world. That in itself, though, means that most people will have different experiences.
We used to call Liberty City a living, breathing world, but this is way beyond anything we’ve done before.
He also added that the game has basically “unlimited” draw distance, and that the team was able to implement the vertical element to a much higher degree this time around.
The main thing we wanted to achieve was to pull off this sense of scale. The way we don’t limit the draw distance and draw the lights so far back really emphasizes this.
Every single light we place in the world is stored, streamed, and laid into the map, even into the distance. The entire world draws all the time: You can fly high in the air at one corner of the map, look over the miles of city and skyscrapers, over the hills and desert to the furthest ridges of the most distant mountains. It’s all there and visible. That’s amazing to see. But the really cool bit is that you can see a street light in a distant town, fly toward it for kilometers until the street itself is visible and the light bulb eventually comes into view. It’s amazing. It’s a level of solidity that I’ve never seen before.
We’ve tried to push exploration in a way that we’ve never managed before. It’s always been a feature of the game and it’s always been very much front and center in our minds when we’ve built the worlds, but we’ve just never had the ability to go as far as we’ve done this time. We’ve really pushed verticality. Most blocks are fully accessible from ground or roof, and you can climb around them and get between lots of the buildings at roof level. It adds an entirely different aspect to the game.
Just today, Rockstar Games released some new screenshots; feast your eyes with them, and remember that in just two days there will be the much hyped reveal of GTA Online, the multiplayer portion of the game. GTA V is releasing on 17 September for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, although rumors of a PC port are increasing each day, with nVidia hinting earlier today that PC gamers might get their hands on the game this Fall.