New Grand Theft Auto V trailer: Going back to Cali

Rockstar Games unveils the first peek at its newest addition to influential, controversial video game series.

Gaming geeks get ready— it looks like Rockstar Games has brought its infamous Grand Theft Auto series back to the West coast, site of the series’ best-selling game GTA: San Andreas.

This first trailer for GTA: V was released November 2nd at noon. Some have hypothesized it will mark the return of the Ray Liotta-voiced protagonist Tommy Vercetti from Vice City, but it’s so far unclear. Regardless, the game’s release will surely start another round of chatter around the influence of the GTA series on both video games and those that play them.

Some call it ultra-violent garbage, while others point to it as a growing art form, like film. Rockstar Games’ Dan Houser, one of the writers behind GTA: III, told Gamespot in October, “It’s still a young, young medium. I don’t think in 1925 or 1930, or whenever movies were the equivalent age to where games are now, people were taking movies anywhere near as seriously to where people are taking games right now. You can’t expect games to have the same cultural cachet as an established medium because that’s not how things work.” But like heavy metal or Dungeons & Dragons in the ’80s, its cavalier attitude toward crime and violence has also been blamed for corrupting teens.

This latest trailer comes just a couple weeks after the 10th anniversary of GTA: III, thought by many to be a watershed moment where video games began to be seen as a serious form of adult entertainment that could also rake in millions of dollars. So far, the series has shipped more than 114 million units. And by the looks of GTA: V so far, they’re about to beat that total with a baseball bat or crowbar or … you get the idea.