GTA 6 may be delayed to 2026, new report claims

GTA 6's publicly-revealed release date may not be set in stone.
GTA 6 Protagonist

Rockstar Games’ highly-anticipated GTA 6 may not stick to its previously announced 2025 launch date, per a new report from Kotaku. Sources familiar with the game’s development reportedly told the website that while internal plans still revolve around “early 2025” there is a likely fallback plan for late 2025 or 2026.

They further alleged that production has started “falling behind” schedule and it was this realisation that may have inspired a recent “return to office” edict at Rockstar Games. In February 2024, the company told staff to return to work five days a week in the office, reportedly due to concerns over security and game quality.

Many sources speaking to Aftermath expressed frustration over the decision, and particularly with the short notice. Some alleged it was a means for Rockstar to “push out” staff without initiating layoffs.

Read: Rockstar Games’ GTA 6 officially launches in 2025

Sources speaking to Kotaku claim it was progress alone that inspired the decision, with leadership allegedly “worried” about the game missing its announced launch window. At this stage, a 2025 release still appears possible, although “early 2025” may be slipping away.

“While an early 2025 release is the goal, sources say they aren’t sure if this will happen and a [Autumn, Northern Hemisphere] 2025 launch seems more plausible and feasible,” Kotaku wrote. “Meanwhile, delaying the game to 2026 is on the table as a sort of ‘fallback plan’ or ’emergency’ option if needed.”

At this stage, it appears Rockstar plans to forge ahead with its previously announced plans, working towards its ambitious 2025 goals for as long as that seems feasible. One source speaking to Aftermath expressed concerns that this could lead to crunch at the studio, which would create its own set of issues.

For now, we’ll have to wait and watch closely to see what Rockstar Games is working on. GTA 6 will likely be one of the biggest gaming launches of the decade – but that doesn’t mean it should come at the expense of staff health or security.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.