The 10 Best Games to Play While You Wait for Grand Theft Auto 6

Make the wait for GTA 6 a little easier.

artwork from Grand Theft Auto 6
Rockstar Games

The wait for Grand Theft Auto 6 has been a long one — full of rumors, leaks, and grasping at straws. Then, in late 2023, Rockstar Games finally revealed a trailer — shortly after it leaked online. The trailer confirmed reports that GTA 6 will mark the series’ return to Vice City when it arrives some time in 2025.

That means we still have a long wait before we can go on our own virtual crime sprees, at least GTA-style. But if you don’t want to wait until then, there are plenty of other open-world games that capture the same feeling. Here are the 10 best games to play while you wait for Grand Theft Auto 6.


Saints Row 2

Saints Row is the closest you can get to Grand Theft Auto.


Of all the games on this list, Saints Row 2 is the closest to Grand Theft Auto. It’s a similarly cynical take on a life of crime, though with a bit more slapstick humor than its more popular competitor. The next game in the series, Saints Row 3, gets even more bizarre, so that one is worth checking out if your goal is sheer chaos.


Mafia: Definitive Edition

Mafia is an old-school take on open-world crime stories.

2K Games

It might be a little reductive to say that Mafia is basically old-timey GTA, but it’s not entirely wrong. Mafia: Definitive Edition breathes new life into the original game, making it the most polished and easiest to play of the series. It follows the story of the Salieri crime family, focusing on a cab driver who’s new to their sordid world.


Red Dead Redemption 2

It’s no surprise that Rockstar’s other open-world series is a great pick.

Rockstar Games

While you’re waiting for Rockstar’s next gigantic open-world game, why not play the studio’s last gigantic open-world game for a while? Red Dead Redemption 2 captures the same wild open-world spirit of the Grand Theft Auto games in a compelling Western tale. More than just an old-school take on GTA, Red Dead Redemption 2 features a surprisingly deep simulation of life on the frontier.


Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2 puts a techy spin on the GTA formula.


Watch Dogs 2 is a very different kind of open-world game. While there’s plenty of action, its focus is on hacking and clever thinking rather than just causing chaos. It’s also got a focus on story, which makes it ideal for anyone who wants their open-world playground to have a little more depth.


The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

The Witcher 3 is a great choice for fans of more fantastical stories.

CD Projekt Red

Most games on this list are set more or less in the real world, like the Grand Theft Auto series. If you need a break from reality (don’t we all) but still want GTA’s open-world vibes, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is your best bet. It captures the same feeling of absolute freedom, just with horses and swords instead of cars and guns. Make sure to check out its DLC as well, which tell some of the game’s best stories.


Cyberpunk 2077

If you think Vice City is rough, wait till you see Night City.

CD Projekt Red

Cyberpunk 2077 takes GTA’s crime-ridden open world to the next level. With plenty of inventive skills and weapons to play with, it’s a great choice for anyone who wants open-ended gameplay and a compelling story.


Just Cause 3

No one does open-world chaos like Just Cause.

Square Enix

Just Cause is a series for anyone who thinks GTA’s open-world hijinks are too tame. Its signature grappling hook makes dashing around the world a joy. The whole series is good, but Just Cause 3 tends to be the fans’ pick.


Yakuza 0

Yakuza 0’s story is serious, but it’s packed with fun diversions.

Ryu Ga Gotoko Studio

Like Grand Theft Auto, Yakuza is an open-world crime story, but with the addition of lots of silly minigames. Yakuza 0 is a remake of the series’ first game, introducing players to Kazuma Kiryu, the gangster with a heart of gold. That makes it the perfect jumping on point for a series that can hold your attention until Grand Theft Auto 6 sees the light of day.


Mad Max

Mad Max is an underrated open-world game with excellent car combat.

Avalanche Studios

Released in 2015, Mad Max is an underrated open-world gem. It’s definitely got its quirks, from a weak story to repetitive quests, but its focus on vehicular combat with a customizable car is completely unmatched. Mad Max offers a very different experience from the Grand Theft Auto games, so you can play while you wait for GTA 6 without worrying about spoiling your appetite.


Sleeping Dogs

This overlooked open-world classic is a great choice while you wait for GTA 6.

Square Enix

Its combination of martial arts, gunplay, and driving makes Sleeping Dogs feel something like a mix of GTA and Yakuza. On top of tremendously fun open-world gameplay, Sleeping Dogs also features a compelling story about an undercover cop set in a vibrant recreation of Hong Kong. Despite a good reception, Sleeping Dogs fell short of Square Enix’s expectations, so unfortunately it seems it will never get an ambitious sequel.

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