Rockstar Games is one of the most well-respected game development studios in the world. People will buy anything and everything that they produce. However, with such adoration comes high expectations, and while the GTA games have always had a reputation for being clanky (kind of like Bethesda with The Elder Scrolls and Fallout), fans have come to accept such flaws as part of the charm of Rockstar's award-winning titles. Unfortunately, it appears that Rockstar might have gotten a bit too complacent with Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition.
The remastered re-release of GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas, has been fraught with controversy and issues, but it appears that its biggest problem is yet to come. According to several data miners, San Andreas' canned mini-game, most commonly known as "Hot Coffee", is still in the game's files.
Rockstar's negligence could cost them millions - AGAIN
Rockstar's handling of the launch of Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition has been a mess - they've even had to go so far as to take down the Rockstar Games Launcher for nearly two days. The bundle remained unavailable to play and purchase as Rockstar explained that it was working to "remove files unintentionally included in these versions." Because of the urgency of the takedown, many believe that this was related to the "Hot Coffee" mod that Rockstar should have already removed from the remastered version of the game before it launched.
Rockstar hasn't clarified which "unintentional files" are still in the games, but data miners have proven that Rockstar did a sloppy job as far as remasters go. The game still has the files for all the music with expired licenses in Vice City and San Andreas, except that the respective games no longer play them. What's even more interesting is that there remains an uncompiled version of the collection's code that contains all the cut and missing content, as well as developer notes and scripts.
With that said, it makes sense if Rockstar would want to make the collection unavailable temporarily to remove these files. After all, the "Hot Coffee" mini-game cost Take-Two more than $20 million in legal costs over a decade ago.
In the original San Andreas version, gamers would only see an exterior view of Carl Johnson's girlfriend's house after she invites CJ back in for "coffee". However, using the "Hot Coffee" mod, players could control CJ's actions while he and his girlfriend engage in very close relations.
Rockstar ultimately disabled this "mini-game" for the final versions of San Andreas, but fans eventually discovered references to the sexually explicit content in the game's files and modded it so that anyone could have access to that particular aspect. This led to classification boards to reclassify San Andreas as an "Adult Only" game and effectively turned it into arguably the most controversial GTA game ever.
Following the discovery, Rockstar had to release a new version of San Andreas that did not contain any trace of the "Hot Coffee" files all the while facing several legal problems that culminated in Take-Two settling a class-action lawsuit for $20 million.
In other GTA news, fans have already found a "newer" Red Dead Redemption 2 easter egg in GTA: San Andreas Definitive Edition. Meanwhile, some leakers claim that GTA IV remastered is going to release in 2023, along with a remaster of 2010's Red Dead Redemption. This will all reportedly lead up to a GTA 6 reveal and eventual release sometime in 2025, confirming earlier leaks.