When an online gamer named Sara reached out to Rockstar Games with a request for the company to distance itself from Grand Theft Auto 4 because the main character is a Russian soldier, Rockstar provided a response that’s both educational and entertaining.
The full exchange can be seen in the screenshot below, where Sara takes to an online forum to express her distaste with the developer’s lack of distancing itself from Grand Theft Auto 4 considering “the current political climate.” She goes on to call Grand Theft Auto 4 a “horrid game” because “we know Russians are trying to control us.” She even has the gall to ask if the developers are being bribed by Russia to continue supporting their game.
Rather than leave the post as is, Rockstar decided to respond, and in a very Rockstar-epic way. First, Nick S., the Rockstar Games representative responding to Sara’s post, reminds the gamer that Niko Bellic, the protagonist from Grand Theft Auto 4 is from Serbia, not Russia. Nick then breaks down how the team at Rockstar is diverse and has team members who ascribe to many political beliefs. He also informs Sara that the Grand Theft Auto games she loves so much (besides Grand Theft Auto 4, apparently) were made, in part, by “Russian developers, artists, sound designers, and so on.”
Then comes the final cherry on top. Nick extends an official seven-day suspension on Sara’s account in the forums, with the recommendation that she reflect on her comments are “understand that these boards are not for your bigoted and racist views.” He adds that if she continues after the ban to act in such a way, she will receive a permanent ban.
This isn’t the first clever response Rockstar has had for gamers. A couple years ago, after gamers discovered a way to hack an incredibly strong vehicle from the single-player campaign to multiplayer, Rockstar incorporated a fix that made the car explode when player got in, rather than remove the car from multiplayer.
As for Grand Theft Auto 4, there’s little chance Rockstar will be taking the game off the market. In fact, when the game was approved for Xbox One backward compatibility a few months ago, Grand Theft Auto 4 experienced an 8,000 percent increase in sales.
And with the incredible success of Grand Theft Auto 5 over the last three years, there’s little chance Rockstar Games will hold back on its controversial content going forward. Here’s to a long road ahead for Grand Theft Auto.
Rockstar Games next project on the way is Red Dead Redemption 2, which is in production for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.