Last week in the wake of an underwhelming E3, it came to light that publisher Take-Two Interactive issued popular GTA V modding tool OpenIV a cease and desist. OpenIV’s lead developer posted on the GTA forums detailing the situation. Further, the OpenIV team sadly explained they would no longer distribute the modding tool.
With such a passionate and strong community behind it, a Save OpenIV petition now has over 50,000 signatures. In addition, GTA fans have flooded GTA V steam reviews causing overall reviews to fluctuate between overwhelmingly negative and mixed. No surprise from a community who have already been playing GTA games for years. In fact, some GTA fans joined the community solely because they were able to mod the game.
The situation calls to mind EA’s The Sims 4 and the lack of support for modding tools in later games. Most likely in order to promote EA’s social services. But much like the GTA community, modding is a huge part of what keeps The Sims 4 interesting after all these years and truly improves game details.
Publisher Take-Two Interactive is responsible for publishing games such as Sid Meier’s Civilization series, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, the Max Payne series, and Red Dead Redemption series. While it’s a strange choice to many players for Take-Two Interactive to alienate big parts of their game’s communities with this action. Perhaps it’s not a concern to Take-Two if they’re expecting large success with new games like Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption 2.
So what’s the big deal with OpenIV and Take-Two Interactive?
OpenIV is a free multi-purpose modding tool for PC games Grand Theft Auto V, GTA IV/EFLC, and Max Payne 3. Massive communities surround great tools and development teams like that of OpenIV and game worlds stay vibrant and interesting for long-time fans. Not only that, but tools such as OpenIV promote creativity and enable gamers to delve into programming and mod creation. Considering that, one would think it’d be a good idea to promote and support mod communities. Rockstar responded to PC Gamer on the matter saying
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.
OpenIV’s lead developer responded
OpenIV, “Liberty City in GTA V” and all other mods/projects from my team and me are only specific for Single player. Rockstar must be well aware about the fact that you cannot access GTA Online while you have installed any OpenIV mod…The statement “Unfortunately OpenIV enables recent malicious mods[…]”, is just wrong and they know it. OpenIV does not allows or supports any kind of GTA Online mods. We always supported Rockstar in their right to protect GTA Online from hacks and cheats. But, Take-Two’s C&D was specific for our Singleplayer mods and have no mentions about GTA Online.
Some controversy surrounds this topic with confusion over what’s a mod and what are GTA V cheats or hacks. To be clear, OpenIV has measures in place to prevent users altering online gameplay or taking the tool online. Other programs such as Menyoo and Force Hax have also since been taken down from GTA 5 Mods. These are used for online cheating or griefing other players and shouldn’t be supported if mods are to survive.
Save OpenIV Petition and GTA V Rockstar and Take-Two Interactive Roast
I leave you with the perfect roast of Take-Two Interactive thanks to YouTube channel GTA Series Videos. It’s an homage to the fantastic modding community that is currently rallying behind OpenIV and a middle finger to Take-Two. Sign the Save OpenIV petition here and head over to the GTA forums to show the modding community your support.