GTA players mock Dan Houser’s new game as ‘Major Larceny Vehicle

GTA players mock Dan Houser’s new game as ‘Major Larceny Vehicle
Images via Rockstar Games | Absurd Ventures

Written by 

Tom Chapman


16th May 2024 12:01

When you're one of the founders of one of the most successful video game companies of all time, we imagine you can barely breathe without the media taking note. As Rockstar Co-Founder Dan Houser makes moves on his next project, it's safe to say that all eyes are on what he's cooking up at Absurd Ventures.

Serving as the Head Writer and Vice President of Creativity over at Rockstar Games, Dan Houser has had a hand in gaming Goliaths ranging from Bully to Red Dead Redemption, and most of the Grand Theft Auto games. However, as Absurd Ventures teases its first game, it seems it can't escape the shadow of GTA.

Dan Houser announces first game at Absurd Ventures

GTA Vice City Tommy and Artwork
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After founding Absurd Ventures in 2021, Houser confirmed its first two projects in November 2023. These are a graphic novel called American Caper and a podcast called A Better Paradise, which are due to release in 2024 and have have been referred to as "two universes." It was only a matter of time, but now, Absurd is teasing its first game. 

A new job listing on the Absurd Ventures website is looking for a Lead Gameplay Designer, with a specific mention of "an open world action-adventure game." The description adds that the company is aiming to deliver "best-in-class combat and third-person action across multiple game modes." 

In fact, the careers page is stocked with positions ranging from Art Director to Senior Technical Director, suggesting that whatever this is, it's in its early stages and definitely won't be released in 2024. Open world action-adventure game is a broad description that could take us anywhere in time and space, but for many, they're already defaulting to GTA.  

Major Larceny Vehicle

Most of the GTA community seems to be taking the news in their stride, happy that there could be some real competition on the market. After all, Saints Row just ain't cutting it. Over on the GTA subreddit, one post wishing Houser good luck was filled with plenty of love.

Others aren't quite so sure, thinking that Absurd Ventures' game will be a pale imitation of GTA. One sceptic wrote, "My guess: the games will have a very good concept, ideas, narrative and writing, but the lack of budget will be felt in the graphics, physics, in short the technical part."

Another mused, "People were celebrating Leslie Benzies when he announces his new game 'everywhere' and then it’s a Fortnite clone, people put too much credit into these executives, when really it’s the smaller employees who actually are working on the floor that get this sh8t done."

Others were convinced it will just be a poor man's GTA, calling it "Major Larceny Vehicle," "Stealy Wheely Automobiley," and "Big Steal Car." Ultimately, someone concluded, "Honestly looking forward to seeing if the "Dan Houser is the whole essence of Rockstar" was true, or if he's not much without the developers." 

There's a sense of irony that Bully was effectively GTA in a school, and Red Dead was basically GTA in the Wild West, but if Houser wants to shake the shackles of his past, he'll have to deliver something new. That's the other problem, though. If he doesn't make something GTA-esque, there will be as many moaning that it's not classic Houser. 

Tom Chapman
About the author
Tom Chapman
Tom is Trending News Editor at GGRecon, with an NCTJ qualification in Broadcast Journalism and over seven years of experience writing about film, gaming, and television. With bylines at IGN, Digital Spy, Den of Geek, and more, Tom’s love of horror means he's well-versed in all things Resident Evil, with aspirations to be the next Chris Redfield.
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