GTA Online update pops a quality-of-life feature behind the GTA+ paywall, making it unavailable on PC

We’ve had the enshittification of Google, Facebook and the public internet at large, now for the enshittification of GTA Online. What do you mean, “it was enshittified to start with”? Take it to the comments please, because first I need to tell you about the latest GTA Online update, which allows you to collect cash accumulated in safes, request vehicles and replenish ammo using your in-game phone – but only if you pay up $8 or $7 a month for a GTA+ subscription, which is currently not available on PC.

The update in question is the Bottom Dollar Bounties update, which adds a Vinewood Club app to your character’s mobile, providing you’re a GTA+ subscriber. As Gamesradar points out, putting what is being called a “basic quality-of-life feature” behind a paywall has caused something of a scrum on the reddits, and has led to dire predictions about the monetisation of GTA 6, to say nothing of much wailing and gnashing of teeth from poor PC players who are still waiting for Rockstar to add currently PS5/Xbox Series-exclusive features such as animals to GTA Online.

GTA Online players have been calling for the ability to gather safe earnings without having to visit the property in question for yonks, which makes this a bit of a monkey’s paw situation. As one redditor puts it: “So many players requested this feature, yeah they’re “listening to our feedback” and figuring out how to monetize it. One of the slimiest things they’ve done in a while.” I don’t have a GTA Online business empire myself, but it certainly feels rather antiquated to have to show up yourself for every payout. This isn’t Goodfellas – GTA Online is set in the 21st century. Still, nothing screams “21st century” like paywalling access to a banking app.

To say a little in Rockstar’s defence, there’s more to Bottom Dollar Bounties than fury about paywalls. There are the literal walls of the new Bail Enforcement Office, where you’ll get to live the morally dubious life of a professional bounty hunter. Here’s a rundown of the highlights, via press release:

An all-new Bail Enforcement Office, offering lucrative opportunities to track down and haul Standard and more challenging Most Wanted Targets

Dispatch Work: Off-the-books activities in Freemode assisting officer Vincent Effenburger to take down LSPD’s corrupt cops — all conducted from the seat of a personal police interceptor

New Vehicles: The Imani Tech-eligible Enus Paragon S and Bollokan Envisage, the HSW-upgradable Übermacht Niobe and Annis Euros X32, the Invetero Coquette D1, Declasse Yosemite 1500, and a trio of new Law Enforcement Vehicles (Declasse Impaler SZ Cruiser, Bravado Greenwood Cruiser, and Bravado Dorado Cruiser)

Drift tuning available in three newly eligible vehicles — the Vulcar Nebula Turbo (Sports Classic), Übermacht Cypher (Sports), and Übermacht Sentinel Widebody (Sports)

New Exclusive GTA+ Benefits: A new Vinewood Club phone app from which players can claim Business earnings, replenish ammo, and request vehicles; a new Vehicle Workshop in The Vinewood Club enabling Club members to mod their personal vehicles; the ability to claim the new Överflöd Pipistrello (Super) a week early for free, and more

Experience improvements:

New Career Progress rewards for Bail Enforcement

New Creator tools allowing players to construct their own Drift and Drag Races using new props

Increased base GTA$ payouts for many activities, including Open Wheel Races, Taxi Work, A Superyacht Life, Lowriders Missions, and many more

As for GTA 6, it’s tentatively down to launch in fall 2025. Here are some things we want, based on the trailer.

Update 3rd July 2024: In the original version of this piece, I wrote that the app let you gather cash from businesses in general – in fact, it lets you gather cash from safes accumulated within specific GTA Online businesses, such as the Agency Office. Thanks to Plake for pointing out the error.

By admin

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