UPDATE: Fix now live on PC.
UPDATE 16/3/21, 7.07pm: Just a day after confirming it would be officially implementing a fan-made fix to reduce Grand Theft Auto Online’s load times by up to 70 percent on PC, Rockstar has announced the update is now live.
The fix arrives as part of GTA 5’s Title Update 1.53 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC, which – as detailed on Rockstar’s support site – includes general network connectivity improvements alongside better load times specifically for players on PC.
“Thanks to t0st for his contributions around this part of today’s title update”, says Rockstar.
UPDATE 16/3/21, 9.26am: GTA Online fan t0st has now said his efforts to cut the game’s PC load times have earned him a $10k bounty.
“Just got awarded $10k through their H1 in-game bounty as an exception :)) (usually only for security issues)” t0st wrote in an update to his blog.
As confirmed below, Rockstar has said it will make t0st’s fix official. Toast him the next time you log on.
ORIGINAL STORY 15/3/21: Rockstar has confirmed it’ll be releasing an update that officially implements a recent fan-made fix to reduce Grand Theft Auto Online’s painfully long load times by up to 70 percent.
At the tail-end of February, a programmer going by the name of t0st did a little probing into GTA Online’s notoriously protracted load times – ones that can leave players waiting upward of five minutes to start a game – and made a number of fascinating discoveries.
The full story has been handily transformed into something approaching layman’s terms by Digital Foundry’s Will Judd, but the quick version is that a quirk of GTA Online’s loading processes saw it performing nearly 2 billion (largely pointless) item checks before each game.
GTA Online: Visit the Island of Cayo Perico.
After a bit of tinkering, t0st put together a fix that managed to cut GTA Online’s load times from six minutes to one minute and 50 seconds – an almost 70 percent reduction. The fix was shared to GitHub and the world waited to see if Rockstar would respond. And now it has.
“After a thorough investigation, we can confirm that player t0st did, in fact, reveal an aspect of the game code related to load times for the PC version of GTA Online that could be improved,” the company said in a statement provided to PC Gamer.
“As a result of these investigations,” it continued, “we have made some changes that will be implemented in a forthcoming title update.”
Rockstar hasn’t shared any details of its fix – there’s no indication whether the official implementation will see a similar 70 percent load time reduction to that experienced by t0st, for instance – and there’s no word yet on a time frame for the official release.
However, Rockstar has confirmed it’s spoken to t0st regarding his discovery, “and would like to thank him again for his efforts.”
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Matt Wales is a writer and gambolling summer child who won’t even pretend to live a busily impressive life of dynamic go-getting for the purposes of this bio. He is the sole and founding member of the Birdo for President of Everything Society.
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UPDATE: Fix now live on PC.