GTA 6 Leak Suggests the Game Could Come Out Sooner Than You Think
It could be in the “polishing” phase.
Despite still not being officially revealed, Grand Theft Auto VI continues to leak like a boat full of holes. The latest comes from the Twitter account GTA 6 News & Leaks 2.0, which posted a few screenshots from multiple sources that seem to suggest GTA 6 is further along than initially thought.
As reported by GamesRadar, one of the screenshots links to a forum post from a Rockstar Games insider named Tez2, who says they discovered multiple files named “bankrelease,” “beta,” and “debug” builds of the game. From there, Tex2 says bankrelease is a debug build that aims at being “feature complete,” while beta adds on extra functionality and aims for being “content complete.”
If you’re unfamiliar with those terms, Feature Complete essentially means the game has full UI functionality and the core gameplay features are all there and playable. Content Complete means that all of the game’s content is now there and playable, but it may be visually unrefined and have a lot of bugs or glitches present. From a Content Complete state, the dev team would generally launch into a “polishing” phase, which can take wildly different amounts of time depending on the size of the game and the work that needs to be done to bring it up to a standard. The two other posts in the tweet show a Twitter user and a developer corroborating the idea of what feature and content complete mean.
The idea that GTA 6 is already in the polishing phase runs contrary to the massive leak of the game that happened in September 2022, with over 90 videos of early development footage being posted online. Much of that footage looked very rough and incomplete, but it seems more and more likely that those were from an early build of GTA 6 that simply isn’t indicative of where the game is at now.
What’s important to keep in mind, however, is that even if the game is in polishing mode, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to release “soon.” This leak would mean GTA 6 is absolutely further along than recent reports would suggest, but that could be the difference between releasing in late 2024 versus 2025.
For comparison’s sake, in June 2022 it was announced that Final Fantasy XVI was “content complete” and the team was focusing on polishing and debugging. With the game now coming out on June 22, 2023, that means roughly one year will be spent polishing unless the game sees another delay. This idea means GTA 6 is at least a year off, but because Rockstar hasn’t officially revealed the game we have no idea of the scope or any ambitious new mechanics and features the game might be going for.
Grand Theft Auto V was first released in September 2013, and it’s likely very early planning for the next game started around that time. That means Rockstar has had nine years to work on GTA 6, but in that time the studio consistently supported GTA Online and released Red Dead Redemption 2. That’s not to mention the shift to a new console that happened during that time. With all of that in mind, it’s little surprise development of GTA 6 has taken so long, especially for a studio with such attention to detail. At the very least, this leak could indicate that an official reveal might come sooner, rather than later.