Most games don’t get upgraded for a new console generation even once, let alone twice. After first coming out on Xbox 360 and PS3 back in 2013, Grand Theft Auto V will finally get an “enhanced and expanded” version on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S later this month, but with one pricey wrinkle: GTA V will be $20 cheaper on Sony’s new-gen console.
As first reported by VGC, pre-orders are up in some territories for the new version of GTA V launching digitally on March 17. The full package, including both story mode and GTA Online, has a standard price of $40. For the next three months, however, the game will be 50% off on Xbox Series X/S and 75% off on PS5. That’s because GTA Online will be free on PS5, though players will still need PS Plus to play it.
This is already getting confusing so let’s break it down a bit more:
- Standard price on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S: $40
- Discount price on Xbox Series X/S: $20
- Discount price on PS5: $10
- GTA Online discount price on Xbox Series X/S: $10
- GTA Online discount price on PS5: Free
As VGC points out, this price difference appears to come from an existing promotion to have GTA Online be free on PS5. In addition, since the new-gen version of GTA V comes bundled with both the story and online modes, Xbox Series X/S owners don’t have the option to just buy the single-player campaign for the same $10 as those on PS5. I’ve already done too much math for a game that came out nearly a decade ago.
The upgraded version of GTA V comes with three graphics modes, faster load times, and a number of improvements to things like vehicle variety, vegetation density, better lighting, and improved explosions. It will also support one-time story and online character migrations between the old and new gen versions of the game. Effectively, players’ existing saves will transfer, but only once. While this data can be moved between PS4, Xbox One, PS5, and Xbox Series X/S, any previously purchased GTA$ currency has to stay within the console family where it was originally bought.
Rockstar Games originally announced GTA V for PS5 and Xbox Series X/S back in June 2020, three months into the global pandemic. Like almost everything else, it ended up being significantly delayed. The game continues to sell like gangbusters though. Publisher Take-Two announced it had reached over 155 million lifetime sales last year. Maybe that’s why the company hasn’t been in a rush to release GTA 6 anytime soon, especially with the growing expectations for it to be one of the biggest games of all time on the back of GTA 5’s success.
Correction: 3/8/22, 1:12 p.m. ET: Clarified that PS Plus is not required to download GTA Online for free on PS5.