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Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive edition launches next month, bringing with it a complete overhaul of three classic GTA games. GTA III, GTA: Vice City, and GTA: San Andreas are coming to modern consoles with revamped graphics, re-worked controls, and a modern-feeling UI to help bring the experience up to modern standards.
However, it sounds like these changes extend beyond gameplay and visual tweaks. Fans have noticed a key detail in the recently released trailer for the remastered collection that suggests Rockstar Games has made at least one move to censor controversial imagery.
Take a look at the trailer for Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy - The Definitive Edition below. While you do that, I’ll be here wondering why Rockstar gave the collection such a ridiculously wordy name.
Soon after the trailer launched, Reddit user Chazza354 pointed out that Rockstar Games appears to have changed the look of Vice City’s Phil Cassidy so that he no longer wears a T-shirt with the Confederate flag on it. Instead, it looks like a skull logo has taken its place.
For those unaware, the Confederate flag has long been considered a highly controversial symbol, one that many have come to identify as intrinsically linked to white supremacy. It’s not hard to see why, given its history as a battle flag of the southern states who seceded from the United States in 1860 in order to uphold “the institution of slavery”.
It is, however, important to note that GTA: Vice City never celebrated the flag itself. If you’ve played the original game and know Phil Cassidy as a character, you’ll know he’s being laughed at, and never with.
Even so, Rockstar clearly thought this was the right call. It certainly won’t make any difference to how the game plays - though most fans seem to agree this wasn’t the right move.
“I dislike the confederate battle flag in real life but even I'm against removing it from games,” wrote one user. “The point of showing it in game was to be satirical and parody and make fun of said rednecks.. One of the bests ways to critique evil or shitty people is parody and comedy.”
“Phil Cassidy is a dumbass, which was strengthened by the fact that he wore a T-Shirt with the Confederate flag on it,” pointed out another.
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