Rockstar is taking some cues from Nintendo.
Today, the studio released a new competitive mode — Land Grab — for Grand Theft Auto Online, the multiplayer component of Grand Theft Auto V. That open-world game has become one of the industry’s best-sellers of all time since its 2013 release, shipping over 75 million copies. GTA Online continues to make money every year thanks to microtransactions, and updates like this keep its players engaged.
“Land Grab pits up to four teams against one another across seven new maps,” Rockstar explained in a press release sent to GamesBeat. “Claim territory and mark it with your team’s neon color by simply running over it. The not so simple part? The army of well-armed rivals who have the exact same idea. The team with the most territory at the buzzer wins.”
Hilariously, the closest thing this reminds me of is Splatoon, Nintendo’s kid-friendly shooter that has teams competing to cover levels in ink. The first Splatoon came out for the Wii U in 2015, but Nintendo is releasing a sequel for the Switch this Summer.
Of course, it’s not an exact clone. In Land Grab, you mark territory by walking over it, not by shooting it with ink. Also, Land Grab has up to four teams fighting against each other, while Splatoon only supports two in its matches.
I also imagine, and this is just a hunch, that Grand Theft Auto’s mode is much more violent.