Ever since the release of Grand Theft Auto V’s latest update, Ill Gotten Gains Part 2, users on PC have found that the game’s performance has taken a hit. There may be a reason for that.

The creators of the LSPDFR (Los Santos Police Department First Response) mods for the game claim that the performance issues are “related to the way in which Rockstar has started to introduce anti-modding protections.”

“In the latest update for GTA V, Ill Gotten Gains Part 2, Rockstar Games strengthened their protections against modding introduced in the first update”, they add in a Facebook post. “Included in this was a whopping 3 MB of junk code designed to confuse modders.”

They claim the junk code doesn’t confuse modders so much as it simply slows them down, obscuring the commands they used to access directly (to tweak game settings, etc) with a bunch of junk.

Problem being, that strengthening and “junk code” is affecting all users, slowing down the speed at which GTAV accesses its scripts (ie, the stuff that determines what happens in the game world). The LSPDFR team estimate that some scripts are taking five times longer to complete than before, resulting in sluggish framerates.

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A post on Rockstar’s support site raises the issue, and a rep has responded with “We have received reports of lower framerate in GTAV and GTA Online after Title Update 1.28 on PC, and we are looking into these reports now.”

Which raises the question: why would Rockstar be trying to “introduce anti-modding protections”? The company said quite clearly in May that they wouldn’t be targeting those using singleplayer mods, which suggests this might instead be a bungled effort to crack down on those cheating in the game’s online component.

We’ve contacted Rockstar for further comment.