GTA Video Games in Order

Discover the complete list of GTA video games in order of release.

All GTA Games by Order

The Grand Theft Auto series has been around since 1997, making it a 26 year old series this year in October. Many people’s first introduction to the series was through Grand Theft Auto V, and to this day still attracts new players with its frequent GTA Online updates. While gamers await news of GTA VI, some might wonder how the series has evolved over the years.

In this article, you will find:

  • The GTA video games in order
  • The universe of each game’s setting

The first set of Grand Theft Auto games take place in the 2D Universe of GTA games, separate from the later 3D and HD games.

The 2D Universe

These games were for PC early, focusing on top-down gameplay rather than the modern sandbox style gamers have come to love.

Grand Theft Auto (1997)

The First Game in Grand Theft Auto Series - GTA 1 Boxart


The first Grand Theft Auto game was released on October 21, 1997 for the PC, and featured a very different type of world that modern GTA players would need to adjust. The gameplay featured a top-down view. The first game took place in Liberty City, Rockstar’s parody of New York City.

Grand Theft Auto: London 1969 (1999)

The First Game in GTA Set  Outside of USA - GTA London 1969


Released on April 30, 1999, Grand Theft Auto: London 1969 was an expansion pack for the original Grand Theft Auto. The expansion featured similar gameplay to the original Grand Theft Auto, but took place in London, one of the few real world cities used in the GTA series. The game was released in a standalone version, but also packaged with the original GTA in Grand Theft Auto: Director’s Cut.

Grand Theft Auto: London 1961 (1999)

A second expansion was released on July 1, 1999, taking place eight years before the events of GTA: London 1969. The expansion was released on the internet as freeware, which was unusual for the time, but marked Rockstar’s first foray into internet distribution for their games.

Grand Theft Auto 2 (1999)

The Second Game in GTA Main Universe - GTA 2 Boxart


Grand Theft Auto 2 was also released in 1999, but featured a newer engine than the previous entries with 3D graphics and smoother visuals, though it still used a top-down view. The game focused on a series of levels the player had to clear while hitting a target score to advance. The game experimented with a retro-futuristic city called Anywhere, USA.

The 3D Universe

These games marked a departure from the top-down style (mostly) and evolved to more of what gamers have come to expect from GTA games.

Grand Theft Auto III (2001)

The First 3D Game in Grand Theft Auto Series - GTA III Boxart


Grand Theft Auto III marked a significant step forward when it comes to the GTA video games in order. Grand Theft Auto III released on October 23, 2001, and saw a return to Liberty City in a fully realized 3D environment that pushed the boundaries of what home consoles could handle. Rockstar Games rose to a new level of critical acclaim with the release.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (2002)

The Second Game in GTA 3D Universe - GTA Vice City Boxart


On October 29, 2002, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City released, and introduced Rockstar’s version of Miami. The game was critically acclaimed for its music, story, and gameplay. The open world was larger than others and again pushed the genre of open world action-adventure games to a new level.

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (2004)

One of the Best GTA Games - GTA San Andreas Boxart


Rockstar Games continued their success with the release of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas on October 26, 2004. The game had three cities the player could explore, set in the fictional state of San Andreas, which was based off California and Nevada: Los Santos (Los Angeles), San Fierro (San Francisco), and Las Venturas (Las Vegas). The game is acclaimed as one of the greatest video games ever made, and was the best selling video game of 2004, with 27.5 million copies sold as of 2011.

Grand Theft Auto Advance (2004)

The First Game in Grand Theft Auto Series That Could be Played on Nintendo Game Boy Advance


Released on October 26, 2004 on the same day as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, this entry brought the series to the Game Boy Advance. While the game is within the canon of the 3D universe, it returned to the top-down view of the original games. The game returned to Liberty City and served as a prequel to Grand Theft Auto III.

Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (2005)

Grand Theft Auto Video Games in Order - GTA Liberty City Stories Boxart


Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories was released on October 25, 2005 and served as the second prequel to Grand Theft Auto III, returning yet again to Liberty City. The game used the same map as Grand Theft Auto III, but added many of the things that its successors had like more indoor environments, motorcycles, and clothing changes.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (2006)

Returning to Vice City in GTA Vice City Stories


Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories was released on October 31, 2006 and serves as a prequel for Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. The game introduced a new empire building system alongside the traditional gameplay expected from GTA games. The game was originally released on the PSP, but received a PS2 release on March 5, 2007.

The HD Universe

The introduction of the PS3 and Xbox 360 brought GTA – and all other games – into the HD realm of gaming and TV. The increased power and functionality of those consoles and their successors pushed the series to even loftier heights.

Grand Theft Auto IV (2008)

This is the first GTA game set in the HD Universe - GTA IV


Grand Theft Auto IV was released on April 29, 2008 and was the first game in the HD Universe continuity of Rockstar Games. GTA IV created a massive city to explore that was more immersive than any game previously, and included two DLC expansions. The game took place in Liberty City and was modeled on the real-world New York City. The map was three times the size of the Liberty City in Grand Theft Auto III, and took inspiration from several of the more famous areas of New York, taking well over 100,000 photos for research. While the game is smaller than San Andreas from the previous game, it was far more detailed. The two expansions were also released as standalone products under the title Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City and did not require GTA IV.

Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (2009)

GTA Chinatown Wars is Second Game Within the HD Universe of Grand Theft Auto


Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars was released on March 17, 2009 and took place in Liberty City. The game is the second game within the HD Universe of Grand Theft Auto and was made for portable platforms. The game returned to a top down view from the older games, but included a fully rotatable camera in an open world.

Grand Theft Auto V (2013)

Newest Game in Grant Theft Auto Series - GTA V Boxart


Grand Theft Auto V is the most recent game in the series and is one of the most successful video games of all time, being released across several platforms starting with the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The game has been critically acclaimed and supported for ten years by Rockstar Games through GTA Online, continuing stories, adding new modes, and creating an advanced multiplayer mode.

Now you know all of the GTA video games in order. While it may be difficult to play some of the older ones, you can still play many GTA titles beyond GTA 5 if you need more GTA in your life.





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