- "...the “universes” are the worlds interpreted at different definitions, 2d, 3d and high definition..."
- ―Rockstar Games during a GTA III Q&A
GTA Universes are the different fictional "universes" that GTA games are set in. They are different from eras in the sense that a game is in the same era as the most recent numbered game (ex. GTA San Andreas and GTA Vice City are in the same era as GTA III) while universes are the different sequences of events that have happened in the games. The universes are named based on the visual quality in which the game is played. They are separated based on the same principle and the events that have taken place in the universe.
There are currently three universes in the GTA series:
- 2D Universe
- 3D Universe
- High Definition (HD) Universe
2D UniverseThere are a total of four games (including two DLC's) that take place in the 2-D Universe:
This universe gave people a 2-Dimensional world with an up-down view.
3D UniverseThe 3D Universe includes a total of six games:
- Grand Theft Auto III
- Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
- Grand Theft Auto Advance
- Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
- Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
- Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
This universe has more games than any of the other universes. It has also sold more copies (over 57 million) than the others. GTA III introduced a breakthrough in gaming by giving people a 3rd person view of a 3D world that they could explore. Every GTA after that has used the 3rd person view.
High Definition UniverseThe High Definition Universe is the most recent GTA universe in the series.
So far it includes five games (including DLC's):
- Grand Theft Auto IV
- Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
- Grand Theft Auto V
This universe is the has the best visual quality of the three. Its timeline of events and setting varies greatly from the 3D Universe. Liberty City in this universe is more detailed and much larger than Liberty City in the previous universe. Los Santos is also larger and the environment around it is more vast.