GTA 5 Single-Player DLC Scrapped Due to GTA Online Being a “Cash Cow”, Per Former Rockstar Developer

Grand Theft Auto 5 - Xbox Series X-S, PS5

It’s long been rumored for years that Rockstar North’s Grand Theft Auto 5 had single-player DLC in development. Take-Two Interactive said there were “big plans” for “substantial story-driven add-on content” back in 2014, but nothing ever materialized.

Datamining from last year’s leak of the game’s source code indicated that several DLC were in the works, including Agent Trevor. Actor Steve Ogg confirmed its existence in an April 2024 YouTube stream with Ned Luke (who voices Michael de Santa). Even more alleged details have emerged, courtesy of former senior camera artist and virtual cinematographer Joseph Rubino.

In an interview with SanInPlay (transcription via VGC), Rubino, who worked at Rockstar for six years, claims, “I was one of the main editors, camera artist and doing a lot of the second unit on-stage stuff. We split our teams into two, so I stayed on GTA Online and then this DLC, which Steven Ogg was a very important part of, and then some of the team overlapped and went to Red Dead Redemption 2 early on.”

The success of Grand Theft Auto Online ultimately led to the DLC’s cancellation. “When GTA Online came out, it was so much of a cash cow, and people were loving it so much that it was hard to argue that a standalone DLC would out-compete that. I think, looking back now, I would say that you could probably do both, but that was a business decision they made.”

Rubino confesses to being “a little upset” at this, and it was “a lot of reason for me being a little sour at that time, because I was like ‘yo, what the f*** guys, this s***’s awesome, let’s keep going, let’s finish this s***.” Agent Trevor was allegedly half-finished at the time, though, “A lot of that stuff did end up making it, I believe, into later iterations of GTA Online, I think. It’s not like they wasted it. It was really, really good.”

Rockstar North has added its fair share of story-focused content to GTA Online, including “The Contract.” It focuses on Franklin Clinton, one of the three protagonists, years after the campaign and features music by Dr. Dre.

The development team is currently focused on Grand Theft Auto 6, launching in Fall 2025 for PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. It’s rumored to receive substantial content additions post-launch, but nothing is officially confirmed. Stay tuned for updates in the meantime.

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