Grand Theft Auto V's online multiplayer mode, launched worldwide today at noon UK time, is struggling to cope with early demand. Many players have taken to Twitter to complain that the game's servers are unavailable, although streaming service Twitch.tv shows players connecting and playing.
Developer Rockstar has opened an official page with the latest updates on GTA Online's launch status. It's currently investigating the following issues:
- Occasional 'Rockstar Cloud Servers Unavailable' error message
- Freezing sometimes while loading into first race in GTAO with 'waiting for other players' on the screen
- Intermittent 'Failed to Host a GTA Online Session' error messages
Rockstar warned earlier that its servers might creak under the strain of millions of players getting online all at once. "We are working around the clock to buy and add more servers, but this increased scale is only going to make the first few days even more temperamental than such things usually are," the company said in a blog post.
Some players have been able to connect to the game, but found themselves alone:
So here's my first look at GTA online.... so far I'm not impressed. #GTAonline Fail pic.twitter.com/or92loaCMJ— Adz Sherlock (@AJ_Sher) October 1, 2013
...while others have been unable to connect at all:
Worlds most viewed screen message today #GTAOnline pic.twitter.com/cIJMJ1omIb— Craig Stanley (@executiverocker) October 1, 2013
In the games I've seen running on Twitch (warning: strong language highly likely), it's generally flipped between online and offline pretty seamlessly, although players on chat have had trouble connecting. Additional features such as stock markets have been unavailable, but characters have been able to do missions and buy property.
You can buy an apartment from around $80,000 in-game currency, and it gives you a 10G achievement called 'The American Dream'. You start with a few grand and can earn cash from missions or killing other players.
You can deposit cash at an ATM to prevent other players nicking too much, with money falling out of your wallet every time you die. Rockstar will sell you virtual currency too, starting at £1.99 for $100,000 in-game currency via your Xbox or PSN account.
Buy an apartment and you can save vehicles in your garage, and tag your personal vehicle so you can always find it on the map. You can even hire a mechanic for $50 per week to fix it up for you and deliver it wherever you are.
It seems harder, with your wanted level creeping up much quicker, and ammo much harder to find. It's nicely integrated with the single-player game though, with your custom-built online avatar appearing as the fourth character in the switch menu. Your friends appear in your phone's contacts list next to characters from the game too.
I'd expect servers to remain glitchy until at least the weekend, especially at night when everyone gets home from work and school and tries to get online. Let me know if you have any luck playing in the comments, or over on our always-online Facebook page.