GTA Online Day Three: Still Not Really Working [UPDATE]

Two days have passed since the online version of Los Santos opened up for millions of players all over the world. It’s not been smooth sailing for the debut of Grand Theft Auto Online, as it’s been plagued with technical issues and server problems. But there are signs that some things are getting better. And weirder. Like characters spawning with no arms.

GTA Online Day Three: Still Not Really Working [UPDATE]S

Various Kotaku writers have been playing—or trying to play—GTA Online since it launched and we’re pulling together our experiences to form a snapshot of where things stand right now. You could barely even enter Rockstar’s connected world in its first 24 hours. We made at least 8 attempts to go online today—two of them worked—but the majority of times, we were met with some kind of time-out message like the one seen above. But now, overall, it seems like we’ve been able to get onto GTA Online more consistently than on day one.

GTA Online Day Three: Still Not Really Working [UPDATE]

Still, trying to engage in the game’s activities with other players is proving problematic. One instance of a disappearing character seems to have been an isolated bug and everything was fine when we came back. Well, besides the armless and wearing-different-clothes situation seen above. Just when you think you’re about to get into a race or a deathmatch, the game will freeze or hang, occasionally leaving you unable to even back out. Sometimes, you’ll need to head all the way back to the console dashboard.

GTA Online Day Three: Still Not Really Working [UPDATE]S

For example, we’ve been able to join other players’ Jobs in progress with relatively little drama but trying to host our own has led to stalled games. Another time, we tried to start an arm wrestling instance and it hung on loading for a while, then froze. We've gotten that more than a few times, that the game will fail to load or time-out or something, then it'll freeze mid transition in the clouds. Time-outs, foreboding error messages and a vague, frustrating inability to connect all add to GTAO’s frustration.

When it does work, GTA Online adds a nice dose of extra randomness to the already authored chaos of Rockstar’s open-world. People honking at you to hop into their cars or shooting at you just because you’re there. Launching races seems to work pretty consistently as does teaming with other players in the Jobs generated by AI quest-givers. Nevertheless, people should be learning about all GTAO’s various systems right now but the experience is still too spotty to be able to do that. We'll have more to say about what it's like in GTA Online tomorrow.

Rockstar said that they'd be issuing another status update "soon" when contacted by Kotaku, but said that players should be keeping an eye on the official support page.

How about you? Have you been able to consistently connect to Grand Theft Auto Online? Anything weird or interesting happen once you get in?

Update: Rockstar has just pass along new of an upcoming title update that they hope will make things better:

We're currently working on a title update for both PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 to address commonly reported issues with GTA Online. We hope to have it out for download as soon as tomorrow.

To contact the author of this post, write to evan@kotaku.com or find him on Twitter @EvNarc