Rockstar finally dropped solid details of GTA Online Heists yesterday. Here's everthing we've learnt - and some wild speculation - from screenshots and that awesome trailer.
Can you hear that? It's Lester on the phone, and he's finally about to offer you some of the biggest jobs in GTA Online. Heists will be here at the start of next year. Rewatch the trailer above, and try not to soil yourself.
Heists are designed for four players with one acting as leader. The leader needs to own a high-end apartment and host the planning board, from which missions can be launched. Each Heist has a number of set-up mission and a big score.
The leader assigns roles (driver, pilot, demolitions, etc) and the share of the profits. The three other members of the crew get paid after each prep mission, but the leader only gets his/her take after the entire Heist is complete. The leader also has to front the costs for the Heist, which sounds like it includes buying specialist equipment (we see drills and flares in the trailer), vehicles and such.
Those are the basics, but here's a whole lot more we learnt from watching the trailer, sifting over the screenshots and theorizing wildly in a state of hype.
Is this the five Heist locations or one Heist split into five missions? Or just random points to keep us guessing? Either way Lester has circled the bank in Downtown Los Santos (1), the Fleeca Bank in Chumash (2), uptown Vinewood (3), a train bridge (4) and of course the Casino and Vinewood race track (5). So many questions but the most important has to be - are you going to be jumping onto a moving train at some point?
Heists pay well
As this grab shows, there's $670,000 on offer for one Heist at least. Evenly split four ways that's $167,500. However, we're not expecting even splits on cash. You can see that the three crew members are getting just over £100,000 apiece and the leader is getting more than that combined. Not too shabby.
Also look at the post-it note on the map. That's the Humane Labs & Research facility at the bottom of San Chianski.
Breaking into prison is going to be hard
Bolingbroke Penitentiary has been a focal point on the map since day one, but nothing much happens in Online there apart from a race around the outside and a mission to nuke a prison bus. This grab shows off the prison break Heist.
You're going to be going up against NOOSE, the heavy armed cops who use high-powered weapons. You'll have to get inside the prison using the prison bus and break out someone called Rashkovsky. You'll be piloting a Velum plane to get him out of there, most likely parked at Sandy Shores Arifield close by. Those single-prop planes are lightweight, so you better make sure to take down all the NOOSE before leaving.
Most interesting is the payout here. The top prize is $550,000 but look on the white board and you'll see that players taking on the pilot, prison officer and demolitions roles are getting a cut worth $82,500. That would leave around $302,000 for the Heist leader. That might seem like a massive difference for the leader, but remember the leader has to front preparation costs for the Heist before it begins so part of that is recouping losses. Also, if the Heist leader designates the payout to his team, is the $82,500 a basic reward that the leader has a right to increase (or decrease)?
Disguises are crucial
In the screenshots and trailer we see crew members dressed as city waste workers, wearing weird chemistry/hazmat protection suits, cop uniforms and a new black flightsuit for pilots. It's a fair guess to say each Heist is going to require a particular outfit, and acquiring them will be one of the missions within a single Heist.
The aircraft carrier location
One of the big reveals in the trailer was the aircraft carrier as a major location for part of a Heist. According to this chap on Reddit, we'll find it in the bottom right of the map, near the port. Compare the two images above and it's damn close. That's provided it doesn't move around…
Aircraft play a massive role
That's a door-mounted machine gun and a nose-mounted minigun on the new chopper. Whoo-eee. But that's not all...
The grab above from the trailer shows what looks like a Hunter attack chopper from GTA: Vice City and the City Stories games...
...and a Hydra jet plane. That's the one with the vertical takeoff and landing, baby.
And lets not forget the magnetic hook for the Cargobob shown in the trailer. If any vehicles stick to it, imagine the fun we can have with that.
Of course there are new vehicles
This grab shows off a new bike. Is it a Nemesis, a Street Fighter, a Hakuchou or something completely different?
New sports car!
Mounted machine guns
I'd imagine these are for Heists only. But look at that bad boy attached to the Rebel. You're going to be using these for high-speed missions and it's going to get messy.
Rockstar knows you're been waiting
"I know you've been complaining, but you weren't ready," says Lester at the start of the trailer. Truth is, Rockstar isn't ready just yet as Heists are only hitting GTA Online in "early 2015".
With the PC version of the game not due until late January I would expect Heists in February at the earliest. Rockstar's official line that "Heists will be coming as a free update to Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS4, PS3 and PC in early 2015" suggests to me that it won't be shipping at the same time as the PC version of the game.
And there are so many unanswered questions…
Will any of the new vehicles, weapons, locations or equipment be available in freeroam? The new Duke 'O Death and the railgun didn't carry over from GTA V next-gen to Online, so nothing is guaranteed.
There are clues to the monetary payout but what about RP? Given that the best Jobs in GTA Online give up 5,000 RP at best, are we going to be looking at higher rewards? In an interview with IGN, lead mission designer Imran Sarwar suggests that bonuses will be handed out for completing Heists to certain specifications (time limits and such). Will those be RP bonuses? And should we also expect clothing and other unlocks for completing Heists, like we do for winning a 10-round Survival?
What else have you spotted in the trailer and screens? Let us know in the comments below.