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Grand Theft Auto Fan Theories That'll Blow Your Mind

Updated October 17, 2019 26.0k votes 8.4k voters 1.5m views12 items

List RulesVote up the fan theories that make the most sense.

Any cult favorite movie or TV show usually has lots of fan theories, but in some instances, fans speculate about video games too. When you’ve got a massively popular series that has an extensive story, you’re bound to get a response, which is why there are so many fan theories about Grand Theft Auto. You might also enjoy the most popular GTA 5 YouTubers

Some of these are so out there that they could easily be classified as Grand Theft Auto conspiracy theories. But some of them make a surprising amount of sense. Vote up the GTA fan theories that are most plausible.

  • 1

    The Three Characters in GTA V Represent Three Generations of GTA

    The Three Characters in GTA V Represent Three Generations of GTA
    Photo: Rockstar Games

    This was a widely enjoyed theory that suggested the entire game was “a celebration of the series’ history.” Redditor CitizenWolfie breaks down Trevor as GTA 1 and 2, Franklin as GTA 3, Vice City, and San Andreas, and Michael De Santa as a postmodern GTA character. It’s pretty in-depth and was sensible enough to draw attention from gaming sites and GTA fans across the web. Here's how CitizenWolfie explains his idea [sic throughout]:

    "Trevor Phillips: Trevor is the crazy, unhinged, old school maniac of the trio. He represents the original, top-down games from GTA1 to GTA2. Those games were all about the thrill of running wild in an open city and featured a cast of wacky characters to interact with. Trevor is a throwback to these games, even to the point of having his very own rampage missions similar to the "Kill Frenzy" side-missions of old and even his special skill of invincibility reflects that feeling you get when you play those old games. He's angry, brutal and butt-ugly, much like those first few games. Sure, they both have their story missions, but really it's all about having fun.

    Franklin Clinton: Franklin's story is the fairly typical rags-to-riches story that was a common theme in the PS2 generation GTA games spanning GTA3, Vice City and particularly San Andreas. We see a good natured guy who wants to rise above his position in life and move beyond his deadbeat friends who are holding him back. And when he is introduced to a successful career criminal, it's his key to making a better life for himself at the risk of pulling off bigger and badder crimes. This theme is similar throughout the above games, though as mentioned Franklin is most similar to CJ from San Andreas, right down to living in a crappy area at the start to getting hold of a mansion in the hills. It's interesting too that Franklin's special skill is driving - one of the main focuses of the PS2-gen games.

    Michael De Santa: Michael is almost a postmodern GTA character - the aftermath of the "GTA lifestyle;" a man who has risen from the bottom and done it all in the criminal world, done some terrible things in the past and is trying really hard to change his ways only to find that things aren't always so easy. Michael represents the "new" GTA that was started from GTAIV (and DLC stories) - a focus on story-driven, multi-faceted characters who are struggling to make amends in an environment that moves too fast. IV's Niko, while certainly not starting from the top, is nevertheless making a new start in Liberty City, but thanks to his idiotic family and criminal connections can't quite stay out of trouble. Both men find that it's impossible for their loved ones not to end up staring down the barrel of a gun at some point and it's interesting to note that Michael's shooting skill mirrors the more gun-based gameplay of IV and V. And on a purely superficial level, both games feature some awesome heists. Likewise, the GTAIV add-ons feature protagonists who have done most of their criminal work long before their stories begin and are just trying to survive in a changing world."
    Does this make perfect sense?
  • 2

    The Epsilon Group Is A Spoof On Scientology

    At this point, saying Epsilon Group is a spoof on scientology is more of a unconfirmed fact than a ridiculous fan theory, but nevertheless, it is still interesting. Rockstar Games even went as far as to release a hilarious parody site ahead of the game's release. It might not be the most conventional piece of marketing out there but it is certainly unique to the irreverent game developer. 

    The over-the-top spoof website is not shy about asking for money and even has a comical tagline: "Many have been called. Five have been chosen."

    Does this make perfect sense?
  • 3

    The Islands In GTA Are A Metaphor

    The Islands In GTA Are A Metaphor
    Photo: Rockstar Games

    Redditor angrypuppy points out that, as anyone who plays GTA knows, the world in the game is a huge landmass surrounded by water. This person’s theory suggests that Rockstar is actually using the islands as a metaphor, stating:

    “In GTAV while walking around the streets you hear people consumed entirely by celebrities, media, social media, gossip, etc. In the grand scheme of things these issues aren't at all important, yet the citizens of Los Santos are entirely preoccupied with them. So Rockstar is basically saying that the American people don't really care for what's happening outside of their little world. They don't actually live on an island, but they might as well because they are isolated from the actual problems that plague the rest of the world. They are individualistic, ignorant, and oblivious to the rest of the world, so they might as well live on an island away from it all.”
    Does this make perfect sense?
  • 4

    Some Rockstar Games Are Set in the Same Universe as GTA

    Some Rockstar Games Are Set in the Same Universe as GTA
    Photo: Rockstar Games

    Redditor DrTatertots suggests that it essentially boils down like this.

    Red Dead Revolver = the 1880s

     Red Dead Redemption = 1911

    L.A. Noir = 1947

    They point out that GTA has multiple universes – 2D (GTA and GTA 2), 3D (GTA 3 and its spin-offs) and HD (GTA IV and GTA V). Red Dead Redemption is tied to HD, through the "Red Dead" book seen in GTA V. They further support this point with great notes such as the fact that Bullworth Academy from the video game Bully is mentioned on the radio in GTA IV.
    Does this make perfect sense?