It is no secret that the PSVita didn’t do very well, especially in the West, and one of the reasons was the lack of AAA titles (and another was stupidly expensive flash memory). One AAA title that many in the community wanted from day one was a Grand Theft Auto port but unfortunately, we never got it… until now as a mostly finished beta build of GTA IV for the Vita has been leaked online!

  • Originally, the game was slated for release on February 15, 2012, possibly as a pack-in game, to coincide with the PSVita’s release in North America in order to give the console a pretty good start
    • Unfortunately, the date was pushed back by a few months as Sony took a little too long to deliver functional dev kits to Rockstar Games

  • The game was meant to be a direct port of the PS3 title and this was achieved quite well through heavy optimisation techniques
  • The reason why the game never saw the light of day was simply because it was too large for the PSVita game cartridges that Sony offered at the time, coming in at around 14GB when the maximum storage capacity of PSVita game cartridges is just 4GB even though Sony promised Rockstar that 16GB cartridges would be made available.
    • The leaker claims that Rockstar tried their best to convince Sony to make 16GB game cartridges for their game believing it would make the system insanely popular but Sony refused to budge as its management was more concerned on the upcoming PS4
    • Apparently, Sony didn’t even allow Rockstar to host the remaining 10GB on PSN for digital download due to “excessive infrastructure costs”

  • As previously mentioned, the beta build of GTA IV for the PSVita is mostly finished and apart from some bugs, everything works. From the video (below) that accompanies the leak’s Reddit thread, the following could be derived:

    • The game looks extremely similar to the PS3/X360/PC version of the game but some textures seem to be of reduced quality (compared to the PS3 version) presumably for better performance
    • When it comes to framerate, the game seems to hover in the 20-30 FPS range which is pretty good considering that the PS3/X360 ports also have some frame drops
    • Loading times are somewhat long so you’ll need to be a tad patient
      • This is because Rockstar had been trying to compress certain portions of the game to reduce its size to fit in an 8GB cartridge but they ultimately failed.

    • All the weapons, cars, missions and even cheats are present
    • There is audio but there are occasional stutters in it. However, these won’t affect the gaming experience greatly

    The leaker notes that there are some odd bugs such as NPCs that are too tall, cars sometimes ramming into each other for no reason and people with faces of Flying Rats (pigeons in GTA slang).

    As it’s not legal to distribute beta builds of commercial games, Wololo will not provide a download link to the GTA IV beta build but it could be easily found by looking around Reddit. Obviously, the game only works a hacked PSVita / PSTV consoles (FW 3.60-3.68) and requires you to have NoNpDrm installed.
    To see a video of it in action, . On the other hand, if you’re not a fan of the HD GTA games, you can always check out TheFlow’s native resolution patch for GTA VCS/LCS (PSP).