My secret to hitting Rank 100 in GTA Online: be an asshole

By Matt Martin, Thursday, 8 January 2015 15:14 GMT

When it comes down to hitting that magic number you need to sink as low as the scumbags in the streets, says Matt Martin.


“It’s time to go to bed now, give daddy a kiss. He’s working. Smashing some poor chump’s skull open until you see the white meat.”

I knew it was a crime but I did it anyway.

You have to break the law, and not just a set of arbitrary rules bundled together by some maths nerd in Edinburgh. You need to break the laws of friendship, of maturity, or responsibility and ethics. You have to do all of this to hit Rank 100 in GTA Online.

You can’t just aim to hit rank 100. That’s amateur thinking, Bucko. You need to work up in increments and meta-goals. Start modest. Earn enough RP to unlock a better weapon. Enough green to keep you in ammo for a week.

Once I got past the Rank 50 mark I refocused on earning enough cash to buy a Buzzard. Because flying an attack chopper makes the game easier, quicker and more violent. Besides, spending that much money in one go is a real high. You look around one day and realise you’re back to an empty wallet. You’ve spunked all your dollars on apartments, a tank, a chopper, all the guns and clothes you’ll never wear. Your Zentorno is fully kitted with armour, transmission, turbo, an ugly paint job and an obnoxious Colonel Bogey horn. Hoarding cash is for bankers.

You have to treat other players like the scum they are. Everyone in online games is out to stick one in your neck. Most other players would fuck a snake if they could hold its head right and if you show a moment of weakness in Los Santos you’ll be riddled like Swiss cheese. Thinking mercilessly is the only way to play. RP and cash rule everything around me.

I pushed playing during working hours to its acceptable limit. I can justify playing if I’m writing guides, news and opinion pieces. I’m fortunate like that. But I needed to schedule time in the evenings dedicated to really working the streets. Conversations with my wife were sacrificed. I’d occasionally show off a new hat that I’d bought for no good reason. She looked at me with contempt in her eyes: “I didn’t get married for this, you fat mess.”


Interacting with my children meant letting them watch me compete in online races, the least violent of any GTA activity. It’s an 18-rated game. I know, I’m a bad father. Call the cops. Sound turned down so West Coast Classics isn’t blurting out the obscenities. Explaining the bird emote as someone being very rude. Don’t copy them. It’s time to go to bed now, give daddy a kiss. He’s working. Smashing some poor chump’s skull into the pavement until you can see the white meat.

“Put them down and take their money. Friends are cheap.”

What jobs did I do to earn the most RP and cash? Sometimes it was calculated and obsessive. I cleared the cathouse three times in one day landing a chopper on the roof and flying Anna home. I stole boats from the jetty, racing to the glorious Alamo Sea with a chopper nuking Merryweather Security. I murdered crusties for their weed and meth and delivered it to a desert garage. All of this in rotation. Gimmie the loot.

But if you get locked in to a grind the fun slips away. If you can’t be spontaneous and stupid in a video game you’re doing it all wrong. Striking a balance between regimented robbery and dumb fucking shit is essential in GTA Online. While you’re at it, incite and play with complete strangers. Stick around with them on missions and deathmatches and then when you all quit out to freeroam it’s a quickdraw contest to see who shoots first. Put them down and take their money. Friends are cheap.


I packed everything in like a rasta in a weed spot. I was the scum in the gutter, the cop-killer, stealing from The Lost to give to the pimp. Scraping up every $20 note dropped by a shitbird. Executing journalists and photographing their bodies. Snatching coke, brown bags and unidentified suitcases, starting gang attacks for peanuts.

You’d think it’s hard to hit Rank 100 but it’s not; it just takes time and blind dedication. GTA Online hands out little rewards constantly. For slipstreaming, stunt jumps, crate drops, stealing specific vehicles, headshot goals and other criteria you’re not aware of until a little notification pops up. It’s never enough, but it all adds to the big wins – the 5,000 RP rewards from Vespucci Shoreline and the $30,000 Survivals. Don’t leave anything on the table.

Why do it? What else is there to do? Reality is all bills and bell-ends. You’ve got to set yourself achievable life goals. I’ll never sell a business and spend the proceeds in Maui with a hired help blowing coke up my ass. But I can spend endless nights laughing my lung up as I tear around these streets in an ugly super car. Spitting bullets at fellow psychopaths through gritted teeth and red eyes. It’s tragic as much as it is hilarious. I’m rank 104. I’ve got a grenade launcher, a cowboy suit and a gold badge to prove it. Fuck you. I’m winning.

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