Although the Grand Theft Auto series truly rose to prominence when it transitioned to 3D with Grand Theft Auto III, it had already been around for years at that point. From its early days to GTA V's release and subsequent four years of success, GTA has become one of gaming's most influential franchises ever over its 20-year history, helping to redefine open-world design and gameplay.
To commemorate the anniversary of developer Rockstar's much-beloved series, we're detailing the advancements and innovations that each of its entries introduced. From its humble beginnings on PS1 and PC to the staggeringly persistent sales of Grand Theft Auto V, here's a look at the evolution of GTA and how it transformed into the household name it is today.
For a visual look at what we discuss here, check out the video version of the evolution of Grand Theft Auto.
Following in the huge success of the series, its latest entry Grand Theft Auto V's online mode continues to do well. For the latest news and updates on GTA V's online mode on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC, follow our full coverage here, including details on this week's new GTA content.
If you're curious about the history and evolution of other big gaming franchises, watch our in-depth video features on the history of games and series like Uncharted, Assassin's Creed, and even games based on the Lord of the Rings.