GTA V RP server closed over anti-LGBTQ+ messages

GTA V RP server closed over anti-LGBTQ+ messages
Images via Rockstar Games

Written by 

Tom Chapman


31st Mar 2023 11:18

A whole decade after we first raced into Los Santos for GTA V, Rockstar Games' automotive adventure still has some of us logging in every day. While we've long since finished the story of Franklin, Michael, and Trevor, GTA Online has remained the lifeblood of the Grand Theft Auto series. 

Aside from Rockstar's continuous cycle of updates that most recently delivered The Last Dose DLC, the GTA V roleplay mod means the game is more alive than ever. While RP is nothing new to GTA (you might remember an obsession with San Andreas multiplayer), some dedicate their lives to being a normal citizen in GTA Online.

GTA V RP shut down over LGBTQ+ themes

GTA NoPixel Arab LGBTQ ban.
Click to enlarge

Whether being a high-flying exec working for Merryweather or a stay-at-home mum taking the kids to school, GTA V RP is a big deal in 2023. So, it's also a big deal when it gets shut down in 2023. 

As reported by PCGamesN, the popular NoPixel RP server has been shut down in Arabic territories. NoPixel has immediately axed its Arabian server after a Twitch player was asked to remove a rainbow cosmetic in-game.

An Istanbul-based streamer called "Dantexstar" apparently streamed the Arab NoPixel server via Twitch. Their in-game avatar wore rainbow-coloured bangles but soon got a DM from Arab NoPixel administrator "Zeeedo." The message asked them to remove the bangled because they're "strictly not allowed."

PCGamesN says Zeedo posted a message to the Arab NoPixel Discord reading, "As you are all aware, most of the Arab countries [sic] are Muslims, so basically it is against our religious beliefs and culture to openly support the LGBTQ community."

Although the message has been deleted, it was posted to the GTA subreddit and continues, "We cannot condone any LGBTQ actions in the RolePlay and outside the RolePlay related to Arab NoPixel."

NoPixel reacts to LGBTQ+ ban

With NoPixel supposedly being an inclusive space, those at the top of the RP server made the decision to permanently close the Arab branch of the server.

"After a thorough discussion internally between NoPixel management, we have decided to part ways and end any future partnership with NoPixel Arab," says a statement. "While NoPixel Arab were willing to make commitments and concessions we personally feel that it is in the best interest of our community to end things completely."

Arab NoPixel has released its own statement, seemingly supporting the higher-ups. "As a practising Muslim and a Grand Theft Auto player myself, it seems to this reporter hypocritical that the administration of Arab NoPixel would focus on the wearing of LGBTQI+ themed cosmetics as distinctly anti-Islamic," it reads.

They explain that "given that GTA allows for simulations of murder, drug-dealing, gambling, and myriad other activities that are both illegal and contrary to Islamic moral teachings," the streamer shouldn't have been messaged. 

On Reddit, the response was largely in support of the LGBTQ+ community. One wrote, "There's some kind of irony that you can roleplay every type of criminal on this server, except being queer," while another added, "It's GTA RP there is literally ZERO reason to involve either your Religion or Sexuality in it."

NoPixel reiterates those who've spent money on the Arab server will be refunded, but there's been no further comment from Dantexstar or the NoPixel administrators.

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