Snow isn’t the first type of weather that comes to mind when thinking about Grand Theft Auto. From the beaches of Vice City to the sun-drenched highways and byways of Los Santos, the fair-weather series seems to have an affinity for warmer climates than cold — which should be of little surprise, considering Rockstar North is based in Edinburgh.
While the game’s developers might be fighting the chill of Scotland by creating virtual sunspots, one modder has set about turning down the heat on Grand Theft Auto 5. By tinkering with the game’s code, it’s now possible for players to add a blanket of snow to their game world.
If you’ve spent much time with Grand Theft Auto 5, you’ll know that snow is already in the game. A couple of missions that take place outside of the normal map boast a decidedly colder climate, and this mod likely uses the settings coded in for those parts of the game.
In fact, Rockstar used the same technique to add some festive cheer to the console versions of the game around Christmas. Now, players will be able to unleash havoc in a winter wonderland all year round, just so long as they are comfortable with running a third party mod.
With the PC port of the game still so fresh, it might be worth being cautious before players go crazy with mods. This sort of content vastly extended the lifespan of Grand Theft Auto 4, and Rockstar is well aware of that — but the studio has stated that they plan to snuff out any attempts to meddle with GTA Online.
Since the microtransaction-supported currency used in GTA Online likely supplements development of free content packs, there’s a definite risk of mods undercutting the systems Rockstar has in place. This snow mod doesn’t directly impact the game’s economy, but the developers could well make an example of it to nip GTA Online mods in the bud.
A PC release makes the inner workings of any game far more accessible than on console — just last week, modders made several NPCS from Mortal Kombat X playable — and with that power comes responsibility. The modding community are a creative bunch, but it’s important that their creativity is channeled towards the right types of content.
Expect to see further official word on mods from Rockstar sooner rather than later. If Grand Theft Auto 5 is to have as vibrant a modding scene as the previous installment in the series, the community and the title’s developers are going to have to find a common ground on what areas of its code are fair game.
Grand Theft Auto 5 is available now for Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PC.