Grand Theft Auto V to get Spring 2013 release

Rob Waugh

The long-awaited sequel Grand Theft Auto V will be released in Spring next year for the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360.

Described as the 'largest and most ambitious title in the series', the game will be set in the fictional city of Los Santos, loosely based on Los Angeles.

The often-controversial series has sold 114 million games since it launched in 1997 - set in a series of cities where the player runs riot, stealing cars and committing crimes.

Newspapers and politicians have frequently called for the games to be banned for encouraging crime - but the 'open world' games are one of the most reliable hit machines in gaming.

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Grand Theft Auto IV, the last installment, came out in 2008 - selling 22 million copies.

The new version will unfold in clearly recognisable versions of Santa Monica, Venice Beach and the hills above Los Angeles.

The announcement says that that the game's world will take in areas from 'mountaintops to the depths of the ocean', hinting that the action might be more free-flowing than previous titles.

"Grand Theft Auto V builds on everything we've learned about open world game design," said Sam Houser, Founder of Rockstar Games. "We can’t wait to share it with fans."

The game will be available to pre-order from November 2.

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