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Pedestrians, also known as citizens, civilians, or peds, are non-playable characters (NPCs) that appear in all of the Grand Theft Auto games.
Pedestrians are civilians and residents of the city that the protagonist is in. However, babies, children and teenagers do not appear in any of the games (the only exceptions would be Mary-Beth Williams in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, Jill Von Crastenburg in Grand Theft Auto IV and two unnamed children shown on www.accept-the-chaos.com in Grand Theft Auto V/Online).
In Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PSP version), there are cheats that allow the player to play as an NPC since those games have single outfits mechanic; this was scrapped in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and GTA IV since these games contain buyable clothes, models, and perfect lip syncing. There are several modifications that will let the protagonist play as an NPC for GTA: San Andreas, however.
Pedestrians in the 3D Universe can often be observed undergoing a phenomenon called "clumping", in which multiple instances of the same pedestrian model can be observed in the same area, and will often interact or talk to each other. This glitch was "removed" in GTA IV, though "car clumping" (not technically a glitch), which causes many of the same car model to spawn together, remains. Pedestrians throughout the 3D Universe are identifiable due to the repeated clothing and models.
In GTA IV, pedestrian models are varied and there are many more of them, thus lowering the chance of Clumping taking place. Two pedestrians of the same model rarely appear together on the screen at one time. This is due to an implemented mechanic of "clothing" and "age" for pedestrians. For example, the businessman model has 2 variants, young and old, and both variants can have different suit colours and hairstyles.
In addition, certain pedestrians are only found in appropriate places, and their behavior is much more realistic and distinct to that particular pedestrian. For example, homeless people will hang around in back alleys, lie around on the streets and ask other people, including the protagonist, for spare change. Russian immigrants will hang around Hove Beach in Broker close to where the ships dock, rich suited businessmen can be found in Downtown Algonquin and criminals such as muggers and carjackers will hang around Bohan. Also, prostitutes only appear at night around the gritty areas of the city.
From the 3D Universe games onwards, Pedestrians carry out complex and realistic actions. Pedestrian behavior includes smoking, talking on the phone, sitting on park benches and reading newspapers, conversing with others, carrying home shopping bags and generally doing things one should expect a random person on the streets to do. Also in GTA IV, pedestrians can be seen putting something in a car's trunk or fixing a broken down engine on the side of the road. Street Criminals can also be observed stealing vehicles or carjacking other pedestrians. Under certain conditions, pedestrians will draw Melee Weapons or firearms on each other or the player. Sometimes in GTA IV and its episodes, certain pedestrians may grab the door handles of the player's car and hang on as the player drives away. This also occurs in GTA V, but much more rarely.
General appearancePedestrians come in all shapes, sizes, ages and ethnic groups. Each have their own dialogue, and interact with each other as well as with the player. There are no children in any GTA games, however, which is likely due to the controversies that might arise from including them in the game, considering that the player can kill any NPC in the game; the beta version of Grand Theft Auto III had schoolchildren as well as drivable School Buses, but were scrapped in the final version. Gang members may also qualify as pedestrians, but feature different behavior by often appearing in groups or in a specific area of the city since their first appearance in Grand Theft Auto 2.
Until GTA III, standard pedestrians were often deprived of details, and as such, few distinctions were made in where certain pedestrians appear and their appearances. From GTA 2 onwards, attempts were made to program gang members to appear in respective gang turf, and from GTA III onwards, civilians reflect what city, district, time, and setting the game is in. For example, in a college area, college students are spawned, while a Chinatown may feature people of Chinese ethnicity. In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, many civilians are dressed in 80s apparel due to its time period, while the game additionally switches between pedestrians donning swimsuits and those dressed in party attires for day and night in Vice Beach. The player will also never see a homeless person in an affluent area of town, nor would they see a businessman in the country. Also, certain pedestrians, generally, drive certain vehicles. Wealthier civilians typically drive more luxurious cars, and poorer pedestrians typically drive less appealing vehicles.
Pedestrians can be run over by cars, shot, and beaten up. Many leave money when they die, which can be obtained by the player. Most of the time, if a pedestrian is killed, an ambulance will show up to heal the pedestrian, at which point the pedestrian will simply get up and continue with his/her business or enter the ambulance to be taken to a hospital. This does not always happen in 3D Universe, though, e.g. when a pedestrian's head is shot or the pedestrian is burnt with Molotov Cocktails or flamethrower, the ambulance will usually not arrive. (This is due to the change of the pedestrian models, e.g. if their head disappears, they cannot be revived.) However, it is probably not in the protagonist's best interests to kill a pedestrian unprovoked, and most likely contradicts their moral values. In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories and onward, pedestrians and cops can also swim but only for a short time before drowning.
In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Carl can have limited conversations with pedestrians. Occasionally he may hear a pedestrian make a comment about how he smells, his looks or mode of dress; he can choose to respond negatively or positively (a negative response may provoke the pedestrian and using the same control scheme used for interacting with hookers), or he can choose to ignore the comment which may result in the pedestrian criticizing Carl for ignoring him/her. Similarly, Carl may encounter drug dealers who likewise can be conversed with in this manner. Rival gang members will walk up to Carl and ask if he himself is a gang member. No matter which Carl chooses, the gang members will still chase/attack him.
In Grand Theft Auto V, pedestrians are much more interactive than before. The player can simply say hello or threaten pedestrians depending who you play as or the attitude they display towards the characters (Trevor insults pedestrians by default). Certain Pedestrians may engage in conversation with one of the three characters, in which case you may choose to react or ignore the conversation. They react to the world around them as well. Pedestrians are known to call the police or film crimes as they happen. In other cases, if the player were to stop next to pedestrians without provocation (if driving a high-end vehicle) they will sometimes take pictures of it, even complimenting the player's vehicle.
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Aside from the civilians who accidentally hit the player with their vehicles, there are even more dangerous pedestrians. Some examples include gang members, who are particularly dangerous as they are mostly armed and will almost always fight back.
In GTA IV, gang members usually leave the player alone outside of missions, unless they are provoked. This can happen with the Russian Mafia if the player open fire against everyone in their territory.
In GTA IV, if the player attacks the pedestrian, sometimes, other pedestrians will come to the aid the pedestrians. This happens more if the player attacks a female pedestrian. Women usually don't aid other pedestrians. Also, pedestrians will sometimes come to the aid of the player if he is being attacked. In certain areas, if the player fires a weapon, a pedestrian may pull a gun (usually a pistol or a micro SMG) and fire at the player in an act of defense. Sometimes in GTA III, when a player is committing a crime involving explosives, a pedestrian will act as a "good samaritan" and try to attack and stop the player. Pedestrians armed with weapons will attack each other or the player if he fires a weapon. If the player attacks a NPC unarmed or with a melee weapon, then the NPC may attack the player in self defense.
In GTA V, if the player honks their horn in front of a driver, the driver will at times become hostile and attack the player. This also happens if the player stands next to a hostile NPC, which can result the pedestrian to attack the player in the process. In GTA V pedestrians may also call the police if they see player committing a crime.
In GTA V, carjacking a pedestrian who has a weapon is considerably more dangerous. If the player fails to leave in time, the pedestrian may pull the player out of the vehicle, then repeatedly shoot them before they can get up. Some pedestrians without a weapon may also become hostile. However female pedestrians will rarely, if ever, become hostile after a carjacking. Exceptions are older women in different areas of Blaine County.
In GTA V, if the player approaches a hostile pedestrian and tries to provoke them, such as bumping into them, the player will recieve a verbal warning from the pedestrian. If the player continues to agitate the pedestrian, he/she will be attacked. Gang members, while giving verbal warnings, may also show a sign of provocation by pulling a gun out of his/her back pocket, and keeping it at his/her side, until they begin shooting at the player.
In GTA SA
In GTA SA, if the player replies negatively to wearing Grove Street colors, the gang might leave the player alone. Taxi Drivers and other pedestrians will often respond to carjackings by trying to pull the player out and beat them, or they might simply attempt to run over the player or repeatedly ram their car or sometime just carjack their vehicle back and drive away. Pedestrians in vehicles will sometimes respond angrily to minor automobile collisions, and will try and damage the player's vehicle by hitting them with Melee Weapons, or giving chase in their own vehicle. Some pedestrians will fight back when provoked.
Sometimes, if the player responds negatively to a pedestrian criticizing CJ's attire or vehicle (which causes CJ to hurl an insult at the pedestrian), they will sometimes stand still before proceeding to beat the player up, or, if armed, use a firearm against them. This happens with any pedestrian in the game, even the likes of affluent pedestrians or females, who are usually peaceful, will still beat the player up.
Also in GTA SA, during the Los Santos Riots, pedestrians will become hostile, carry weapons and attack the player or steal their car. They will also attack the cops and other pedestrians. Also, the player needs to look out for Street Criminals that may carjack players, pedestrians, and even police.
If the player provokes a hostile gang member, all other members of that gang in present on foot will also turn hostile to the player. However, if those attacks accidentally hit a vehicle of a gangster of the same gang, the gangsters on the car will get out and turn hostile to his own homies. But bullets of gangsters from the same gang will never hit each other.
If a gangster accidentally hits a police vehicle, the police officers inside will attack all members of the gang. Any passing-by police vehicles will join the gunfight.
The player can communicate more extensively with noteworthy pedestrians. Some noteworthy pedestrians will come to the player's aid when he is hurt, or if the player harms another pedestrian, some bystanders will try to defend the victimized pedestrian that the player attacked.
In games such as Grand Theft Auto IV or Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, if the player is in a particularly crime-riddled neighborhood, the player may be attacked or car-jacked by a random Street Criminal, particularly at night when fewer police are patrolling the streets. In bad areas such as Bohan (GTA IV), the player will occasionally be held at gunpoint by a gang member or street criminal.
List of Noteworthy Pedestrians
- Crack Dealers
- Drug Dealers
- Elvis Impostors
- Gang members
- Police officers
- State Troopers
- Security Guards
- Sentinel XS Driver
- Street Criminals
- Taxi Drivers
- Sometimes, specifically in GTA San Andreas and GTA IV , the dialogue is completely off-key. For example pedestrian 1 may ask pedestrian 2, "Has your family ever let you down?" and pedestrian 2 would reply "Yeah, I agree!".
- Before the HD Universe, pedestrians' bodies would disappear 2-3 minutes after being killed if not revived. In GTA IV and GTA V, their bodies do not disappear until the player leaves the body. If the player keeps killing a lot of pedestrians and/or officers in the same directions, bodies will start to disappear. This is to prevent the system from overloading.
- When using auto aim the weapon may lock on to thin air, but there is a invisible pedestrian also referred to as a ghost. Shooting that pedestrian will cause blood splatter on the floor and money to appear. This glitch only occurs in the PS2 version of GTA San Andreas, although it has been reported in certain places in the Xbox version, as well as the Xbox 360 version of GTA IV. It may also happen on the PS3.
- In all GTA games, despite the fact that each pedestrian has their own unique voice and dialogue, their voices all sound similar when they scream, get injured, or die.
- In Grand Theft Auto III, there are "boss" pedestrians across Liberty City. The pedestrian wears green clothing, and if he attacks another pedestrian, they will flee. A "weak" pedestrian is also seen everywhere in Liberty City. He wears a blue Hawaiian shirt and blue shorts, and will flee whenever anyone attacks him.
- In GTA Vice City, there are also "boss" and "weak" pedestrians across Vice City. The first "boss" pedestrian is a businessman who wears a green suit, and if he attacks another pedestrian, they will start running; even If he attacks cops, they will also flee. The other "boss" is a man who wears a black outfit, black sunglasses, black sombrero, and is black himself. He behaves in the same manner as the first "boss". If they attack at each other accidentally, they will continue walking like nothing happened. The "weak" pedestrian is a man who wears a light-yellow t-shirt, with a camera, who will run if someone attacks him.
- In GTA III, if the player runs against elder pedestrians, they will fall down.
- In all the 3D Universe citizens have a chance of dropping large sums of cash. This is sometimes referred to as a "jackpot" by some players. It is possibly just a glitch in programming from the money drop rate. Some players have obtained over 3 thousand dollars in one kill. Sometimes, even a homeless person may leave a few thousand dollars when killed. It is unknown if this is a glitch or a reference to people who act like homeless people just to get money even though they are not homeless (some are actually rich). This feature is more notable in GTA III because the cash in the aforementioned game is inflated ten times. In GTA SA killing a drug dealer mostly gives player a large sum of money.
- Sometimes in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, a glitch occurs where a pedestrian will not get killed no matter how much punishment is dealt to them: they simply become invulnerable.
- Carjacking in GTA San Andreas will sometimes cause an NPC to say "Now I'm going to have to steal another car", or say that he stole this car first. This implies that NPCs also steal random cars, either parked or driven by other NPCs, albeit off-screen.
- In GTA San Andreas, it is possible to see a blonde lady in a white halterneck dress who appears to resemble Sharon Stone's character, Catherine Tramell, in Basic Instinct and possibly referencing Paris Hilton from her dialogue to the player and other pedestrians. Another pedestrian, a white male with long blond hair and a green jacket with ivory pants, resembles Kurt Cobain. Many fans of the game also suggest that the pedestrian that wears orange track pants, orange bucket hat and no shirt is Dr. Dre. One of the pedestrians that hangs around Grove Street resembles O-Dog from Menace II Society. An oriental San Fierro pedestrian wearing a black cheongsam and has black straight hair, is said to resemble actress Lucy Liu. The last reference is that the man seen driving the Bobcat among other vehicles is said to resemble Bishop, the character played by Tupac Shakur in Juice.
- In GTA San Andreas, pedestrians have an irritating habit of jumping into the path of the player's car. Pedestrians are scripted to jump away from the player's vehicle if he is driving towards them, but sometimes, if the player changes his direction at the last moment, the pedestrian may end up jumping into his path and getting run over.
- In GTA III, GTA Vice City, GTA Vice City Stories and GTA Liberty City Stories, bodies from dead pedestrians that disappear will be replaced with the white chalk outline of their body.
- In GTA San Andreas, when certain women are driving, sometimes their breasts raise up to their chin or disappear, but when the player carjacks them, their body will go back to normal. Tested on PC version.
- In Vice City, Liberty City Stories, and Vice City Stories, the player can assist police officers that are chasing street criminals through the street by killing the pedestrian without gaining a wanted level, the player will also receive a "$50 Good Citizen Bonus" for helping the police, in later games like San Andreas, IV, and V, the player will receive a wanted level instead.
- In GTA Vice City, If you continue to beat down the street criminal when already killed, the police may ignore the player.
- Police Officers, before GTA IV, and GTA V, unusually attack and even kill Street Criminals with their bare fists, rather than using a baton; which the latter they use in order to arrest the player.
- In the 3D Universe games, pedestrians that are given ranged weapons through cheat codes will react violently towards firearms being discharged near them. As such, they will begin firing at the original shooter, whether it was the player, gang members, other armed pedestrians, or even police officers. In GTA III, they would react similarly to Claude throwing grenades in a crowded area, regardless of whether or not they had weapons of their own.
- Sometimes, when carjacking somebody in Grand Theft Auto IV, he will say "What? I can't afford a Renault!" This might be a joke on the pricing of certain Renault cars that were quite expensive.
- In GTA IV, certain emergency workers such as doctors, nurses, paramedics, and firefighters, will attack the player if provoked. Yet unlike any other pedestrian, the LCPD will simply ignore the assault, and fighting back results in a one-star wanted level. This is unusual as LCPD officers normally arrest pedestrians for fighting, however their status as honest emergency personnel may make them exempt from arrest. However, paramedics and doctors will be attacked by the police If they run over people or other officers. This is most notably seen in firefighters, as police will sometimes open fire at the player or others NPCs (if players dialed in-game 911 for the police)
- In GTA IV, some male pedestrians have female voices they use for screaming and when in pain, this is somewhat unusual, but most of them won't fight back if attacked. These pedestrian models usually have effeminate mannerisms and styles usually associated with stereotypical homosexuality, so it may be a joke on the part of the developers.
- There have been instances in GTA IV where if there is an injured pedestrian laying on the ground that has been hurt to the point that they can't get up, another pedestrian may shoot them to death. This occurs when having a shootout between the protagonist and gang members outside of missions.
- In GTA IV and V, the pedestrians will drop the objects which they are holding including umbrellas, cellphones, brooms (for cleaners), a clip board, coffee and soda cups, shopping groceries, cigarettes, etc. Whenever they are bumped into and/or shocked/surprised. They will also drop their hats or baseball caps and also their sunglasses will fall off if pushed or ran into.
- In GTA IV, pedestrians no longer produce the sound effects of bodies being crushed while getting run over by vehicles and landing on the ground after falling from heights.
- Rarely, in GTA IV, especially in the northern parts of Aldereny, pedestrians will not respond at all to having a gun pointed at them, and they will make threats to you. If you shoot they will pull out a gun and start attacking you.
- In GTA IV, if the protagonist attacks a female pedestrian, a male pedestrian will intervene and attack the player, however, in rare instances, a man will help the player to attack the woman. The player will get the same result even if they attack a prostitute.
- In GTA IV, if an attacking pedestrian misses the protagonist and strikes another pedestrian, the attacker will then ignore the protagonist and the two pedestrians will usually begin to fight each other until one of them is injured or arrested.
- In GTA IV, if the player wounds or kills a street criminal, then the police will ignore the criminal, and start chasing the player.
- In GTA V, pedestrians will react to what you do; if you rob or kill someone, they might call the cops, film it or try to take you down themselves. If the pedestrian films your actions, there is a chance that the footage will end up on the in-game Weazel News reports.
- Sometimes in GTA V, when a pedestrian sees the protagonist or another pedestrian in an expensive looking vehicle, they will say positive responses like "Nice ride dude" or if they see an expensive looking vehicle parked, a pedestrian may pull out their phone and take a picture of it.
- A rare glitch in GTA V has pedestrians complimenting the player on their vehicle, or even asking for a lift, when the player is actually on foot and nowhere near their last car or bike.
- In GTA V, if any Pedestrians are caught in the middle of a gunfight (i.e. when Street Criminals get out of their car and shoot at the cops), they will drive recklessly trying to evade the situation. However, even after they have evaded the situation, the frightened pedestrians will continue to drive recklessly. This can also be experienced if the player shoots at a pedestrian's car near other pedestrians.
- In GTA V, one pedestrian appears to resemble Bulgarian pop icon, Azis.
- Frightened Pedestrians on foot also behave similarly to the ones in cars, for they also will not stop running and screaming even after they have gone far away from the gunfight.
- In the HD Universe, if an unarmed pedestrian is hostile to you, simply pulling out a weapon will cause them to flee. You don't even need to aim at him/her.
- If the pedestrian is holding a melee weapon, they will only flee if you draw a firearm. If the pedestrian is holding a gun, there is no way to make him/her flee.
- In GTA V, if you perform a melee attack without harming anyone, pedestrians may flee.
- In GTA V, pedestrians hostile to the player will flee if the player has a wanted level and the Police show up. Even large numbers of gang members will flee upon the arrival of a single police car. If they are hostile but the player is not wanted, they will attack the police instead of fleeing.