Rockstar Games giving away ‘GTA: San Andreas’ on PC to drive Rockstar Game Launcher adoption

‘Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas,’ first released in 2004, is still considered one of the best games of all time. — Picture from Rockstar Games via AFP-Relaxnews
‘Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas,’ first released in 2004, is still considered one of the best games of all time. — Picture from Rockstar Games via AFP-Relaxnews

NEW YORK, Sept 18 — Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption studio Rockstar Games is joining a host of other game publishers by providing its own game launcher app for PC players and is encouraging early adoption by giving away 2004’s well-received Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Set within a facsimile of California, as its name suggests, and including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Nevada’s Las Vegas within its virtual territory, the highly rated Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is being given away for free by Rockstar Games.

That geographic setting foreshadowed one of the best-selling video games of all time, glitzy and grimy 2013 open world criminal adventure Grand Theft Auto V, whose multiplayer mode is still being updated with extra content.

Greeted with rave reviews and commercial success upon its debut, PlayStation 2 game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas has since been released on a host of other console, computer and mobile platforms, including PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android and iOS.

The San Andreas giveaway is available for a limited time, Rockstar says, encouraging fans to act and boosting sign-ups to its new PC gaming service, the Rockstar Game Launcher.

The Launcher gathers players’ Rockstar games into a single application, regardless of origin or medium, providing cloud save functionality for all supported access, direct access to Rockstar’s own online store, and news about the game developer’s latest endeavors.

Eight of Rockstar’s PC game titles are supported by the Launcher from the get-go.

As well as GTA: San Andreas and Grand Theft Auto V, it supports Max Payne 3, school-age hero’s journey Bully: Scholarship Edition, then Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and then 1940s detective mystery L. A. Noire plus its virtual reality counterpart, The VR Case Files.

That leaves out the first two Max Payne titles, street racer Midnight Club II, notoriously dark action horror Manhunt, and Grand Theft Auto, Grand Theft Auto 2, Grand Theft Auto IV, and Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City.

Rockstar had already established its own online multiplayer network and copyright protection service, the Rockstar Games Social Club, which launched alongside 2008’s Grand Theft Auto IV and was integrated into subsequent releases.

The studio network’s most recent game, multi-award winning Wild West saga Red Dead Redemption 2, has not yet been released or announced for PC. It debuted on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in October 2018. — AFP-Relaxnews

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