Manhunt Arcade-Style Mode Is Coming To GTA Online
Is there any stopping Grand Theft Auto V and Grand Theft Auto Online? Even seven years after Rockstar took over consoles with its fifth main series to the controversial GTA franchise, things in San Andreas are still ticking along nicely thanks to a lot of love for the base game and its online component. While GTA Online was originally launched as a sidekick to GTA V, it has since outgrown its sibling to become an arguably bigger presence.
If the recent release of the Cayo Perico Heist and a whole new island wasn't enough, it now looks like a new GTA Online mode will be inspired by Rockstar North's Manhunt. Even though GTA is undoubtedly the jewel in Rockstar's crown, let's remember the publisher is also remembered for everything from L.A Noire to the Red Dead Redemption games. When taking things in-house, Rockstar North (formerly DMA Design) developed the out-there Lemmings franchise and delivered Manhunt back in 2003.
GTA Online Manhunt mode: What is it?
GTA Online itself is one giant Easter egg, meaning we're sure you've dived deeper into San Andreas and checked some of them out for yourselves. A unique feature is a trip to the arcade to play one of the various games within the game. It's a bit like when we've been able to play DOOM inside Minecraft (albeit in the official form).
Posting on Twitter, @GypsytheScumbag thinks they've uncovered a Manhunt-inspired arcade game lurking in the files of GTA Online. Following this, YouTuber TheNathanNS shared more placeholder assets and additional file names. By the looks of it, you'll soon be able to play Manhunt in GTA Online.
For those who need a refresher, Manhunt followed a Death Row inmate called James Earl Cash, who is forced to participate in snuff films and dispatch enemy gang members who are sent to hunt him down. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like it will be a full port of Manhunt in GTA Online - with assets suggesting it will be an on-rails shooter.
If you thought GTA was controversial, that's nothing compared to Manhunt - which was dubbed as the most violent video game of all time by some. Even those within the ranks were uneasy with its graphic violence. In 2007, former Rockstar employee Jeff Williams explained (via Rock Paper Shotgun) how staff felt "icky" about the game's violence and how "there was almost a mutiny at the company over that game". It was also tragically linked to the murder of 14-year-old Stefan Pakeerah by his 17-year-old friend Warren Leblanc in Leicestershire, England.
GTA Online Manhunt mode: Are there more Easter eggs?
Despite Manhunt's checkered past, Rockstar pushed ahead with a sequel. Manhunt 2 came out in 2007 and swapped out "some" of the violence for a more psychological horror, while talks of a possible third game have never really gone away. In terms of Manhunt being homaged in Grand Theft Auto, the GTA Online Manhunt mode won't be the first time it's hacked its way into this world.
Manhunt's fictional Carcer City was mentioned in GTA III, wanted posters of Cash appeared in GTA: San Andreas, and several Manhunt masks were rewards in GTA Online's Diamond Casino Heist. It's all part of the inter-connected Rockstar Multiverse.
Seeing classic games remade in spiritual successors is nothing new. Remember when the "Escape From Castle Wolfenstein" bonus level recreated the first level of Wolfenstein 3D inside Wolfenstein: The New Order? Now that Manhunt is getting a new lease of life GTA Online, it could be about time to reignite those talks about a possible Manhunt 3. Either way, a piece of gaming history is about to be honoured in the most profitable entertainment product of all time. Not bad considering Manhunt was once banned in several countries.
Images via Rockstar