Rockstar Games made a lot of gamers happy yesterday when their entire website became a giant confirmation that Grand Theft Auto V was not only in development, but that they'd be showing off the game's first trailer next week.
The official Grand Theft Auto 5 logo was revealed (it even explains that V is the Roman numeral for 5) but outside of the logo and the impending trailer, not a single detail has been confirmed. We do hear that GTAV will take place in Los Angeles but what's more important than the setting is how the game will actually look and we may have our first hint that that.
Through a case of coincidence and impeccable timing, the co-owner of StickTwiddlers, Ben Cordell, had a chat two weeks ago with someone who we'll refer to as industry dude, who showed some videos to Ben of the game Eight Days.
Remember that? Eight Days is a game that was officially announced at the Sony E3 press conference back in 2006 and is in development at SCE London Studio. It's is a game not unlike Grand Theft Auto with the exception that it actually takes place over the span of 8 days, using a real-time clock and taking placing in 8 different states.
It's currently on hold so we don't know where it is in development now, but part of that may be to one of its lead animators leaving the team to join Rockstar Games. During their conversation, industry dude mentioned to Ben that the lead animator on Eight Days was in fact, working on Grand Theft Auto 5 and surprise, surprise, the game was revealed two weeks later (yesterday).
After doing some digging, StickTwiddlers found out Jim Jagger, Character & Animation Director on Eight Days left SCE London in late 2009 to join Rockstar North and has been working the Lead Animator ever since on a game that's "to be announced." How interesting.
Now, because of the connection, you must see the animations and graphics of Eight Days as it's likely the best indicator of what Grand Theft Auto 5 *could* look like:
Feels like Grand Theft Auto, right? It's a wonder why Sony didn't keep trucking on this game - they could certainly use an exclusive franchise like this.
Animations aside, what does need a big improvement in for the GTA franchise is the controls. Like all Rockstar games, including Red Dead Redemption and this year's L.A. Noire, the player and combat controls have always been awkward and for some, off-putting. This needs to be revamped for Grand Theft Auto 5.
Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.