GTA VI’s Female Protagonist Is Its Most Exciting Feature

Who run the world?


Despite not even having been properly revealed as of yet, GTA VI is already one of the most anticipated games of all time. GTA V makes its claim as perhaps the biggest and most successful game ever made at this point, so a follow-up is likely to succeed every possible expectation, but with the recent report from Bloomberg, GTA VI’s set-up and premise sounds incredibly promising.

According to the report from Jason Schreier and Bloomberg, GTA VI will be set in a modern day version of Vice City, along with a surrounding area inspired by Miami. Given how Vice City is the best setting in all of GTA history, this is an exciting prospect already, but Rockstar are also giving GTA its first ever fully fleshed out female protagonist, which has quite frankly been a long time coming.

The caveat there is that GTA VI’s female protagonist will be the first female protagonist with an actual character in the series. The original GTA and GTA 2 for the Game Boy featured women as playable characters, but the protagonists for both games, male or female, had no real personality to speak of. Functionally, there was no difference between picking the male or female avatars, but it counts on a technicality, right?

GTA Online players will also know that they can play as a female avatar there too, and while they don’t have a voice, they’re reactive and emotive during cutscenes, allowing them to have some kind of personality. They’re also completely customisable, so players can imprint their own personality or character onto their GTA Online avatar. While GTA VI’s female protagonist isn’t the first ever in GTA’s history, it’ll be the first to actually have their own voice, their own personality and their own motivations, making it historic for those reasons.

The report states that GTA VI will feature a Latina protagonist as part of a playable pair of characters, and the two characters will have a Bonnie and Clyde-esque dynamic. The Bonnie and Clyde story is one of the most legendary crime tales ever, but it’s hard to think of games that have really taken advantage of this dynamic to tell a story before. For that alone, GTA VI is going to feel like something fresh.

Of course, the real highlight of this news is the fact that GTA VI will have a female protagonist at all. Despite what all the chuds think, specifically the ones who furiously typed some kind of misogynistic nonsense on social media as soon as the report dropped, this is only going to create more interesting stories and characters for GTA going forward. As someone who much prefers GTA campaigns over the amorphous blob of content that is GTA Online, this development has been a long time coming.


Historically in the GTA series, players have only experienced the main story from the male perspective while limiting the agency and involvement of women in the story to just damsels in distress or sexual objects there to gyrate in front of the player avatar for virtual cash. Trying to think of female characters in the GTA series, especially before GTA V, to give as examples for this article felt like a herculean task because they’re typically so inconsequential.

Other than CJ’s sister in GTA: San Andreas, whose role is only really defined by the men in her life, or Catalina from San Andreas and GTA 3, there’s not really anyone else. Sure, Catalina has a bit more character and is slightly more memorable, but when one of the best examples of female representation in the series prior to GTA V is a one-dimensional villain, you’ve got a bit of a problem.

GTA V at least offered some more interesting female characters with Michael’s wife and daughter, Amanda and Tracey. They had a bit more involvement in the overall arc of Michael’s story, and were featured a bit more prominently than others in the past, but even still, they spent much of their time being the cause of Michael’s annoyance. For a lot of the game, they were just there to wind Michael up, trading barbs with the career criminal, or they’d need to be rescued/protected from someone or something.

Red Dead

What’s perhaps most disappointing, at least on a personal level anyway, is that I remember vividly reading about supposed leaks for GTA IV in the Official PS2 Magazine. The screenshots depicted a woman as the playable character, along with UI elements that were consistent with the PS2/Xbox era of GTA games, and while it would ultimately prove to be fake, it felt plausible back then. Or, it did at least to my 12-13 year old self. It’s a shame it’s taken nearly 15 years for that to actually become a reality.

To Rockstar’s credit though, their representation of women has improved since GTA V, especially with Red Dead Redemption 2. While the misogyny and bigotry is there because of the era the game is set in, RDR 2 also offers an incredibly interesting female character in the form of Sadie Adler. While she could have easily been a damsel dragged through the game by Dutch’s gang, she morphs into a strong, capable badass who should totally get their own spin-off game. Make it happen, Rockstar.

Putting a woman front and center of a GTA VI story, and a person of colour at that, is going to offer so much more in the way of representation for an entire community of players who have enjoyed the game for years but haven’t seen themselves on screen. If nothing else, it’s going to be a more unique story than just “white man does crime”. Let’s just hope this “constantly updating city” malarky doesn’t mean GTA VI is going full live service.

I just want to play the story and dip, thanks.

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