10 Open World Games Like GTA You Should Play

Games Like GTA

The GTA franchise isn’t just a monolith in the gaming industry; it’s the most profitable entertainment franchise of all time. Not only has GTA V clocked up an estimated 170 million sales, its live service counterpart, GTA Online, has made developer Rockstar Games billions of dollars of additional revenue since its release over 8 years ago.

While the GTA franchise has been going for 25 years, it’s GTA 5 that has really changed the gaming landscape forever. Few games offer the same open ended sandbox gameplay, explosive setpieces, and miraculously detailed open world that GTA 5 has.

Also Read: All GTA Games in Order

While few game developers have the resources of a company like Rockstar, there’s still plenty of titles out there that capture the open world mayhem that GTA has become famous for. Let’s take a look at 10 open world games like GTA.

Red Dead Redemption 2

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One

Red Dead Redemption 2

It makes the most sense to start off our list of games like GTA with Red Dead Redemption 2, which is also developed by Rockstar. While GTA sees the player making mayhem in satirical versions of modern day American cities, Red Dead Redemption 2 is rooted in the Wild West at the turn of the 19th century.

You take on the role of Authur Morgan, an outlaw who, along with his gang, is living through the decline of the Wild West as civilization threatens to destroy their way of life. Although the game takes a far more poignant approach to themes and narrative, much of GTA’s DNA runs through it. From the vast open world, exploration of the criminal underworld, open-ended sandbox gameplay, and even the controls and user-interface, GTA fans will feel right at home with Red Dead Redemption 2.

Just Cause 4

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One

Just Cause 4

Just Cause 4 takes all the crazy stuff you’ve come to expect from GTA and dials it up to eleven. While GTA is somewhat grounded in reality, Just Cause 4 puts you in the shoes of Rico Rodríguez, who’s essentially a superhero without the cape or, in many ways, the morals.

Like GTA, you’ll travel around the massive open world at breakneck pace in a variety of vehicles like cars, planes, and boats, but these are often equipped with over the top weapons and gadgets to ensure you create the biggest explosions possible. You’ll have your usual arsenal of weapons such as pistols, assault rivals and rocket launchers, but also the wackier gadgets like a rail gun, a wind gun, and a lightning gun.

Saints Row IV

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

Saints Row IV

While Saints Row IV isn’t the latest Saints Row game to come out, we’re recommending this one because the newest one isn’t so great. However, Saints Row IV, like Just Cause 4, takes everything you know and love about GTA and ups the ridiculousness tenfold.

Saints Row IV is set in a simulation, so nothing is off the table when it comes to crazy stuff you can do. The humour is over the top too (in a good way), with plenty of pop culture references and spoofs to keep you chuckling away as you vapourize, incinerate, and annihilate the world around you.

Sleeping Dogs

Platforms: Windows, Mac, PS4, Xbox One

Sleeping Dogs

Released in 2012, Sleeping Dogs might be a little dated now, but this shouldn’t stop you from checking it out. Sleeping Dogs throws you into a modern-day Hong Kong, and it just so happens to be one of the best-released urban environments in any game out there. While it’s not the largest open world we’ve ever seen, it makes up for that in its incredibly rich detail and variety of meaningful things to see and do.

Like GTA, you’ll be navigating through the criminal underworld, and while weapons and vehicles certainly play a significant role, you’ll be relying more on your fist-to-fist combat and parkour abilities to get the job done. While it’s over a decade old now, we implore you not to sleep on this one if you enjoyed GTA.

Watch Dogs 2

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One

Watch Dogs 2

In Watch Dogs 2, you’ll play as a highly skilled hacker in an incredibly detailed version of San Francisco Bay. Watch Dogs 2 gives you loads of different ways to approach missions, allowing you to make use of your hacking prowess and environmental objects to overcome obstacles, sneak past enemies, or carve a more destructive path.

Similar to GTA, traversing the open world is one of the game’s strengths. You’ll have a multitude of vehicles at your disposal, from cars to buses, quad bikes to boats, and much more. Watch Dogs 2 also leans heavily into the parkour method of getting around, with protagonist Marcus Holloway being far more nimble than Trevor, Michael, or Franklin.

Mafia: Definitive Edition

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One

Mafia Definitive Edition

Mafia: Definitive Edition in a modern take on a classic game. The original Mafia came out in 2002, and the Definitive Edition takes the best aspects of that game – the narrative, the missions, and the city – and rebuilds it for the modern generation. There’s plenty of new additions sprinkled in, too.

While some of the gameplay elements might feel a little dated, we think there’s plenty for a GTA fan to love here. The fictional city of Lost Heaven (based on 1930s Chicago) is a sight to behold, and the story of the rise and fall of warring Mafia gangs still holds up to this day. While you won’t find as many things to do in Mafia compared to GTA, it’s still a dozen or so hours well spent.

L.A Noire

Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

L.A Noire

Set in the 1940s, L.A Noire is different to most games in this list in that you play on the right side of the law. Rather than spending your time robbing banks, running away from cops, and taking down rival criminal gangs, you’ll be tasked with solving a number of different crimes across Los Angeles.

In many ways, L.A Noire plays out like an interactive movie as you investigate crime scenes, trace down leads, and integrate crooks. That being said, it isn’t difficult to draw parallels with GTA in quite a few areas, such as the well-written dialogue, chase sequences, shootouts, and more. It makes sense, given that L.A Noire was also developed by Rockstar.

Far Cry 6

Platforms: Windows, PS4 / 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S

Far Cry 6

In Far Cry 6, you’re both the good guy and the criminal. That’s because you’re fighting to overthrow a fascis regime run by Antón Castillo, a ruthless dictator portrayed by Giancarlo Esposito. Like GTA, you’ll have a massive open-world to cause havoc in, with a variety of vehicles, weapons, and gadgets to see you through.

Unlike most games on this list, Far Cry 6 is played from a first-person perspective (we’re assuming most of our readers play GTA in third person), which offers a nice shift if you’re coming off the back of 100s of hours with GTA. It helps make the action feel more up close and personal, while providing an immersive way to enjoy the sun-soaked sands of a Cuba-inspired island.

Marvel’s Spider-Man

Platforms: Windows, PS4 / 5

Marvel’s Spider-Man

While GTA doesn’t give you access to superpowers (without mods, anyway), flying through the skies in a jet or blowing up car after car with your rocket launcher can, at times, make you feel superhuman. GTA gives you a tonne of freedom around how you explore the map, and so does Marvel’s Spider-Man.

As the titular character, you’ll swing and sling your way through an awe-inspiring recreation of New York. While not quite as detailed as GTA 4’s version, it provides you with a fantastic playground to climb skyscrapers and beat up bad guys. Like GTA, there’s also some great characters and an incredibly well-written story if you’re interested in the superhero genre.

Cyberpunk 2077

Platforms: Windows, PS4 / 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S

Cyberpunk 2077

While CD Projekt Red’s hotly anticipated Cyberpunk 2077 might have been in a rough spot at launch, two years of optimisations and updates have ironed out most of the technical issues. Night City’s neon-soaked streets are an absolute feast for the eyes, and if you’re looking for a science fiction take on the GTA formula, Cyberpunk 2077 won’t disappoint.

You’ll be working with and against some truly horrific criminal masterminds as you drive, shoot, and hack your way through a highly detailed cityscape that’s impossible not to get immersed in, as long as you have the hardware to power it. Cyberpunk 2077 leans much further into RPG territory than GTA, with countless customization options for your skills, weapons, augments, appearances, and more.

Final thoughts

Although Rockstar are, in many ways, the top dogs of the open world gaming experience, there’s still plenty of games out there that capture the mayhem, freedom, and humour that GTA offers. In different ways, the games we’ve discussed today share at least some of the components that make GTA great, and are definitely worth your time.

Kristian Longden

Kristian is a writer, gamer, and music lover. He's been writing about video games for several years, and he's probably better at writing about them than playing them. His favourite games are Bloodborne, Final Fantasy 14, and Jak and Daxter.

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