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Former GTA dev claims Rockstar made him remove his posts about cancelled projects


A former Rockstar developer claims the company made him remove recently posted information about cancelled projects.

Former technical director Obbe Vermeij, who spent 14 years with Rockstar North before leaving in 2009, recently shared alleged details on abandoned Rockstar games, including its cancelled PlayStation spy game Agent.

However, in a new post on his blog, Vermeij says Rockstar contacted him and told him to remove the posts.

“Today (November 22, 2023) I got an email from Rockstar North,” Vermeij wrote. “Apparently some of the OGs there are upset by my blog. I genuinely didn’t think anyone would mind me talking about 20-year-old games but I was wrong. Something about ruining the Rockstar mystique or something.

“Anyway, this blog isn’t important enough to me to piss off my former colleagues in Edinburgh so I’m winding it down. I’ll maybe just leave a few articles with anecdotes that don’t affect anyone but me.

“I would love for Rockstar to open up about development of the trilogy themselves, but it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen anytime soon. Maybe I’ll try again in a decade or two.”

Vermeij’s now-deleted posts included alleged information on the studio’s spy game Agent, which was announced as a PlayStation 3 exclusive at E3 2009.

The game was planned to take place in a 1970s Cold War setting, but Vermeijs says it was ultimately abandoned for being “too much of a distraction” from the company’s work on Grand Theft Auto.

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He said the original plan was to split Rockstar North into two teams, with half working on GTA 4 and the other half working on Agent, which was codenamed Jimmy.

“The game was to be set in the 70s, be more linear than GTA with a number of locations,” he claimed. “There was a French Mediterranean city, A Swiss ski resort, Cairo and at the end there would be a big shootout with lasers in space.”

Vermeij also spoke about another cancelled project, which was going to use the GTA Vice City engine repurposed to make a zombie game set on a remote Scottish island.

According to Vermeij, it was decided the project was “too depressing” and work moved straight onto GTA San Andreas.