[RANT] Recent bad changes to Grand Theft Auto Online: Import/Export update

I would say I’ve spent about 8,000 accumulated hours (maybe more) playing Grand Theft Auto, my favorite series made by Rockstar games.  I have played every GTA from three to five except the one for Gameboy Advanced.  My most played game was GTA 3, the only one I completed 100%. I would not say I am an expert at playing the game, but I enjoy it.

I have been playing GTA 5 since it came out on Xbox 360, switched to PC in April 2015, and I have put a significant amount of time in it.  I’ve enjoyed most of the “free” content that has been published by the developers since day one.  But over time I’ve gotten more frustrated on how the developers treat their game.  At the time of writing this, I’ve spent 1227hrs, 57mins, and 7secs playing GTA online.  And the most recent update has put me with the least amount of play time.  This update was the Import/Export update.

I had already purchased all of the major content before this update.  A car, a garage, and a CEO building.  All I needed to do was buy a vehicle warehouse, to no suprise to me, it was expensive.  I had the cash, but after I bought that new garage, I would be spent.  I had no money to buy new vehicles or the new CEO building garage add-on.  And I still don’t as I write this.

I was so excited even purchasing the warehouse.  This update actually sounded like Rockstar gave their community a better way of making GTA$ (money).  Even if GTAO became a grind fest.  I was pleased to know that I wouldn’t have to grind missions or CEO warehouse jobs anymore.  I’ve spent 51d 3h 57m 7s into the game where about 80% of that time was dedicated to just trying to get money for new content. They stopped doing the easy double money & double rp for races and missions. All their cash grabbing comes from shark cards and adversary modes. I would rather play solo or with one other friend where I didn’t have to fight other players. I’m not good at PVP so having only double money being in PVP sessions really makes the game less fun. You have to play missions at their maximum time limit (16 minutes) to get a high pay between 16k and 25k. You have to do sightseer, head hunter, and hostile takeover so much that you’ve traveled GTA’s map so many times it equates to traveling the circumference of earth’s real life equator. Meaning I’ve traveled nearly 24,874 miles in the game. I also don’t have enough friends to play heist missions. The only one I’ve managed to grind is Fleeca Job where I probably have replayed 100x—screw Lester’s lame jokes.

Oops, I went on a short tangent there..  after doing the first job, I discovered another “Rockstar Logic” I was truly disappointed.  After doing the first mission with a friend I noticed the cost of the vehicle was significantly reduced when selling.  I had found a Cheetah as my first car.  Its purchasing price in game is $650k.  But when I sold it I only got $80K.  Which is equivalent to about 5 contact missions. (In this example it’s not the shortest time to complete it, but the longest time so you earn more money.)  When most contact missions take about 15 minutes plus loading time (each) to complete it is still better than doing contact missions.   But at that moment I was pissed.  The game shows you the “Market Value.”  The developers put that value on the screen when you’re selling to show you what you could make but will never make.  And that’s very infuriating. Youtuber: iTwisterr shows the selling process.  I sold one of the most expensive supercars in the game, the Progen Tyrus, and I got 1/25th of its retail value as commission.  The value doesn’t matter.  The commission will stay the same no matter what car it is; which isn’t how it works in real life.  Even if this game is trying to be semi-realistic.  It has its WTF moments.

BUT I have yet to explain the worst issues.  There is more game breaking bugs in this update than I’ve experienced in the 3 years playing.  The GTA Wiki describes exactly what bugs have been recorded in the making of this update (near the bottom of the page).  One particular YouTuber Gypsy has shown the issues that have come out in this update, and I wanted to explain his grief.  As you can see in the video, there’s a bug in the vehicle collection missions where you will be driving along, and on the left-hand side of the screen a list of people start leaving your lobby, this happens shortly after he goes under the freeway bridge and heads up the ramp.  Once everyone has left the lobby, your vehicle bursts into flames, destroying the cargo you were delivering, failing the mission.  There is no alternative to fixing this bug.  If it happens the only thing you can do is switch lobbies and hope it doesn’t happen again.  Hence the reason why I don’t play much anymore.  I can’t risk my emotions.  It’s not a fun experience to have. Imagine trying to beat Bowser in Super Mario, but one of those jumping flames hits you while you’re jumping.  You just have to predict when it’s going to happen.  In this case, it hasn’t happened on the first delivery.  It randomly happens after numerous missions.  In other words, don’t expect to play with your friends when you’re doing this particular job until the game is updated.  Feel free to watch Gypsy’s whole video too because he touches on another issue, adversary modes, a game mode I don’t play, and I understand his pain.  He doesn’t talk about this, but I wanted to briefly mention it.  Very rarely does this happen, but this bug has happened more than 4x since the new Import/Export DLC started; where I go into an office/warehouse, and I get a frozen loading black screen.  Similar to when PS1/PS2 would randomly freeze while playing extended periods of time.  Apparently GTA Online likes to make the same replicated joke while transversing through loading screens.  Sometimes it acts as a loading screen, but it never ends.

Then you have modders. If they weren’t allowed in online, then the prices in the game wouldn’t be so outrageous. Rockstar probably wouldn’t be so hellbent to raising the prices of almost every new vehicle to $1M. Some vehicles would never cost this much based off of their previous vehicle list.  Modders have managed to find a way to steal real money from players. It’s called the Insurance Fraud. Two videos show how it happens.  It’s when a modder will assign a golden jet rated at $10M as another person’s insured vehicle and will blow it up blaming you for the destruction of their personal vehicle costing you $93,750. And the modder can do this multiple times draining your cash by millions in seconds.

Everything about this update is an inconvenience. You need to buy a 1.5M-3M dollar vehicle warehouse to steal vehicles. You must deliver them in perfect condition in Public Lobbies (where griefers and modders live).  One bullet hole’s repair cost is equivalent to the worst wrecked car you can imagine.  And even that picture doesn’t relate to how the update functions for vehicle cargo.  You also can’t even get upgrades on your businesses without going into a public server. It appears that Rockstar’s developers are quite overwhelmed with fixing their game. They manage to take clothing glitches into precedence over gameplay glitches. You’ll always see a new clothing: helmet, mask & glasses glitch fixed before the dropped-from-server-flaming-car glitch or the infinitely loading screen.

The game went from having fun with players and friends to a toxic community of griefers, modders, and game breaking bugs.  I will still play the game.  But not to the extent that I had before this update.

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