That being said, I'd like to see time progress in the game, but nothing past the time period the game is released. I think it's a bad idea and unrealistic, considering the game will probably look goofy several years after its released and none of its futuristic predictions come true (similar to a lot made in Back to the Future 2). It'd still be entertaining, but quirky.
That logic is very flawed. Many sci-fi films not only made wrong predictions about the future but wildly misjudged the rate of scientific progress. For instance, how many old sci-fi movies were set in 1999? And yet here in 2017 we still don't have flying cars or rampaging aliens or Kurt Russel in tight leather hang gliding through LA.
If you honestly think the point of science fiction is to make accurate predictions about the course of history, that's an issue with your own imagination and ability to understand basic storytelling and world building rather than any fault of the author.
here's the thing, right: asking a question like this and using such extreme examples, to the point of genre change, is just silly.
I disagree. It's an extreme example, yes, but primarily because doing something so off-kilter and unexpected, from a creative standpoint, would challenge Rockstar, challenge fan expectations and most likely yield up something completely unique, rather than repeating the same exact formula over and over and over again for the next few decades.
you say the fundamental backbone of the series is 'crime', which is fine, but if anything a more accurate label would be 'mostly light hearted takes on the gangster movie genre'. from the start the gangland stuff you suggest isn't 'gangland', or organized crime, or even corporate satire. this is f*cking matrix style robo revolutionaries and making comcast a paramilitary organization on mars. these are all cool suggestions for the next red faction game, but sure as sh*t not for a gta game
First off, this isn't a concept thread and I was literally listing the first ideas which sprung to my head as a way to illustrate my point. Secondly, whilst you are correct about the series attempting to be a more comedic take on the gangster movie Rockstar have clearly grown tired of those limitations and attempted to tell more nuanced and mature stories in recent games. They were showing clear signs of boredom with pure satire as early as San Andreas, and now find themselves in a strange middle ground where they clearly have stories they want to tell, but are compelled by fan expectations to continually be irreverent and smutty. My point is that these thematic constants are fluid. The fact that the genre shift would be so jarring is actually kind of the point.
there are a bunch of ways you could 'spice things up' and 'breathe new life into the series' with just about anything else within the guidelines of the franchise's crime roots. make it a period piece, for example. go parallel lines style and take a story through different decades and points in history. do it in the style of a mafia game and focus more on a protagonist's rise and fall over the years with a focus on story telling. tell the story from a different perspective, one we haven't seen focused on: a corrupt cop, mexican cartels, so on. set it in a different country, even.
As I've said before, that would be fine, and I'd buy it. But it's still just a new coat of paint. It wouldn't excite me or intrigue me, it would be a slightly different version of stories and characters we've been seeing since, what, 2001? Even earlier?
but what you're proposing is like asking for the next lord of the rings to be a sci fi corporate satire, or asking for the next star wars to be an indiana jones-style romp through the south americas. they're both slightly capable of being described as within the same genre (they both could be considered adventure movies), but at the end of the day they're so completely, glaringly different that they're barely the same game. giving the next installment of a franchise a complete reboot of just about every factor apart from some thematic details or game mechanics is just an absurd suggestion - your idea of 'breathing new life into the series' (and im not even gonna delve into why i disagree with this kind of sentiment) is creating a fundamentally different game
This seems more like your own prejudices talking than any coherent argument. There's literally nothing precluding you from telling a crime story in a futuristic setting, but because you want to play essentially the same game over and over you can't quite process the concept. sh*t, you could tell the GTA story in Medieval England, running brothels and selling opium, it would still be a story about criminals and gangs, just reinvented beyond the confines of a psuedo-modern world. It's a lack of vision on your part, I'm afraid.
the worst part? a sci fi gta could be achieved. think ghost in the shell or even gta 2: an almost apocalyptic vision of the future with the same assortment of quirky characters and crime figures along with slightly familiar gameplay. at least it could be considered ripe for satire (an exaggeration on current fears as well as what people in the past thought the future would be like) and could still roughly fit into the series' hallmarks. you even mentioned it in your post. instead, we have f*cking red faction 5 over here
Again, that just sounds like a new coat of paint. Which is what GTA 2 was.
Also, Red Faction f*cking sucked. I played it back in 2002 and about the only thing I remember was that you could blow up walls. That's it.
No a game set in Medieval England wouldn't a GTA game. Just having crime in the game isn't what makes this series, otherwise RDR would be a GTA game. Your futuristic idea is good for a new IP, I can't think of any games about crime set in a futuristic city but it just wouldn't be GTA.
You are right that GTA has a certain formula (what franchise doesn't?) and thats honestly fine. Its not like AC where they milk it every year and people get sick of it. Rockstar is smarter than that and lets people wait and get really interested. Not to mention they do try some other things like doing a more mature darker story with IV and then multiple protagonists with GTA V.
But since they aren't even willing (yet) to do GTA games set in other countries (because this series is about satirizing America), there is no chance that anything like this ever happens.
Anyway the lack of any huge innovation isn't a problem at all. A franchise needs to retain its identity.