Grand Theft Auto (often simply abbreviated as GTA) is a series of sandbox video games published and developed by Rockstar Games. In the games, the player assumes the role of an outlaw who can either roam freely around an open-world city or participate in a series of missions, such as bank robberies, assassinations and other criminal activities. Widely considered one of the most critically acclaimed video game franchises to date, the franchise is known for its controversial story-lines and missions, violent game-play and adult humor.
The first title in the series was developed by Scotland-based developers DMA Design (now Rockstar North), and published by BMG Interactive, which was originally supposed to be called "Race'n'Chase" and released for MS-DOS, Windows 95, PlayStation, Sega Saturn and the Nintendo 64. However, the game never saw release to the Saturn or Nintendo 64, and was nearly scrapped after nearly 30 months in production. In the end, the game was released in 1997 to critical praise.
Grand Theft Auto
Grand Theft Auto  (GTA 1) is a top-down sandbox game that was released in 1997 for DOS and eventually ported to PlayStation, Nintendo GameBoy Color, Windows and Steam. The game takes place in three cities modeled after real locales, Liberty City (New York City), Vice City (Miami) and San Andreas (California / Nevada), which later became settings for
Grand Theft Auto 2
Grand Theft Auto 2  (GTA 2) is a sequel to Grand Theft Auto released in 1999 for Windows and PlayStation One and eventually ported to the Sega Dreamcast and Gameboy Color. set in an unspecified time in a retro-futuristic metropolis called "Anywhere, USA," the game shared most elements from GTA 1, including overhead view and abilities to steal cars or answer phone calls.
Grand Theft Auto III
Grand Theft Auto III  (GTA 3) is the third installation in the franchise released in 2001 for PlayStation 2 and eventually Windows, XBox, Steam and Mac. Set in present-day in Liberty City, a close replica of New York City, the game introduced 3D graphics and third-person point of view and became the top-selling video game of 2001. It has been often credited as the breakout title of the series and a pioneering model of open world action-adventure video games.
GTA: Vice City
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is the fourth main game in the series released in 2002 for the PlayStation 2 and eventually ported to Xbox, Windows, Steam and Mac. Set in 1986 in Vice City, a fictional city modeled after Miami, the game drew much of its inspiration for plot, design and soundtrack from the 1980s American culture.
GTA: San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is the fifth main game in the series released in 2004 for PlayStation 2 Xbox, Windows and Steam. San Andreas introduced advanced elements of action-simulation to the series, including driving, swimming, climbing and fitness meters.
Grand Theft Auto IV
Grand Theft Auto IV  (GTA 4) is the sixth main game in the series released in 2008 for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Windows and Steam. In the game, the player assumes the role of Niko Bellic, an eastern-European immigrant searching for "the American dream" in Liberty City. It is noted for being one of the most expensive games ever developed, with a total cost estimated at about $100 million and took more than 1,000 people and three and a half years to complete.
Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto V (GTA 5) is the seventh game in the series set to be released on September 17th, 2013. The game's setting returns to the fictional state of San Andreas. The title was first announced via a tweet from Rockstar's Twitter account with a hashtag #GTAV that linked to Rockstar's main website that had a GTA V logo (with the V's texture as a bank note) with a 2/11/11 trailer date.
The first two 2D universe installations of the series, Grand Theft Auto and Grand Theft Auto 2, were commercially successful and met by positive to mixed reviews, as well as stirring a controversy for its violent and graphic gameplay. However, the series found its major breakthrough with the release of Grand Theft Auto III, which went onto become the best selling game of 2001 and paved the road for the commercial success and critical acclaims of sequel releases. As of October 2013, the series has broken more than a dozen of Guinness World records relating to video games and entertainment industry.
GTA: San Andreas
In 2008, GTA: San Andreas set new world records for the Largest Voice Cast in a Video Game, Largest In-Game Soundtrack and Most Successful Entertainment Launch of All Time, though later eclipsed by Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 in 2009.
Grand Theft Auto V
In October 2013, Guinness World Records announced that Grand Theft Auto V broke seven new world records, which includes the best-selling action-adventure videogame in 24 hours, best-selling videogame in 24 hours, fastest entertainment property to gross $1 billion, fastest videogame to gross $1 billion, highest grossing videogame in 24 hours, highest revenue generated by an entertainment product in 24 hours and most viewed trailer for an action-adventure videogame.
Australian Target Stores Ban
On November 29th, 2014, three women claiming to be survivors of violence launched a petition on Change.org urging target to refuse to withdraw copies of Grand Theft Auto V from their shelves, arguing that the game "encourages players to commit sexual violence and kill women" (shown below). Within the first week, the petition received over 46,500 supporters.
On December 3rd, Target Australia released a statement announcing that they would cease selling Grand Theft Auto V after receiving "strong feedback from customers that this is not a product they want us to sell." On the following day, critics of the ban launched a petition on Change.org for Target to remove the Holy Bible from stores because it "encourages readers to commit sexual violence and kill women." In less than 24 hours, the petition gathered upwards of 30,600 supporters.
OpenIV Cease and Desist
On June 14th, 2017, the lead developer for the GTA V modding software OpenIV published a post on the GTAForums revealing that Take-Two Interactive sent him a cease-and-desist letter to stop all development and distribution of OpenIV.
"It was a hard decision, but when any modding activity has been declared illegal, we can't see any possibilities to continue this process, unless top management of Take-Two company makes an official statement about modding, which can be used in court."
That day, a petition was created on Change.org titled "Save OpenIV," which gathered upwards of 59,600 signatures within six days. On June 17th, Redditor talkido submitted the peition to /r/pcgaming, where it received upwards of 8,300 points (93% upvoted) and 690 comments within 72 hours.
On June 19th, Rockstar Games released a statement commenting on Take-Two Interactive's cease-and-desist:
"Take-Two's actions were not specifically targeting single player mods. Unfortunately, OpenIV enables recent malicious mods that allow harassment of players and interfere with the GTA Online experience for everybody. We are working to figure out how we can continue to support the creative community without negatively impacting our players."
According to 4chan founder m00t, the “Rickroll” prank began on /v/ (videogame board) circa May 2007, when someone posted a link to Rick Astley’s 1987 music video for "Never Gonna Give You Up" disguised as the first sneak preview for the highly anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV. Due to the the trailer’s high demand at that time, many GTA fans on /v/ fell victim to the bait-and-switch prank and the joke became quite popular on 4chan.
Y U DO THIS?
On April 24th, 2008, the video gaming blog GameFront posted an article reporting that the developers of Grand Theft Auto IV were disappointed to find out that a leaked copy had been downloaded tens of thousands of times via torrent sites, which was accompanied by a LOLcat image macro with the caption “y u do dis?” (shown below).
Let's Go Bowling!
In GTA IV, the main character (Niko Bellic) can receive calls from NPC friends. These calls usually invite the player on a date with the NPC to do extracurricular side missions (such as getting drunk). After a while, Niko is constantly being harassed with phone calls from his cousin, Roman, sometimes during actual missions. The phrase "Let's Go Bowling!" has been used in several GTA parodies, most notably being Grand Theft Awesome.
When Niko is drunk, he can call out to a cab as an alternative to driving. Instead of calling the taxi by name, Niko shouts, "YELLOW CAR!", which the Gmod community parodied. Soon after, several YTMNDs were created as well.
GTA Cover Parodies
Grand Theft Auto Cover Parodies are fan-made parodies of the box art of Grand Theft Auto games. Grand Theft Auto III was the first GTA game to use a collage of guns, characters and locations with the game title in the center. This style of box art has been used with all major GTA games since.
Grand Theft Auto Logic (often abbreviated GTA logic) is an image macro series used to point out unrealistic protocols or physics-defying glitches that are found in gameplay.
GTA: San Andreas Myths
There have been numerous Internet-based rumors about the existence of mythical creatures in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, which includes alleged sightings of the Bigfoot, Mothman and UFOs. Several screenshots and videos, often blurred and of low quality, have been posted claiming to show the creatures in the game.
Follow The Damn Train, CJ!
Follow The Damn Train, CJ! (or “All we had to do, was follow the damn Train, CJ!”) is a memorable quote from the open world action Video Game Series Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. The quote is spoken by Big Smoke in the mission “Wrong Side of The Tracks” if the player fails the mission. Due to the difficulty of the mission and the negative nature of the quote, the quote has since become infamous among fans of the series.
 Guinness World Records – CONFIRMED: GRAND THEFT AUTO 5 BREAKS 6 SALES WORLD RECORDS