Report: Grand Theft Auto DS to Have Drug Dealing Mini-game

In a move that is sure to spark controversy, the upcoming Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars for Nintendo’s handheld DS will feature a drug-dealing mini-game.

Although many grownups use the DS, it is widely regarded as a kid-friendly system. Citing a print story in Edge magazine, CVG reports:

Here’s some news that’s surely going to send mainstream newspapers (and Nintendo’s PR department) mental. It’s emerged that for DS features a full-on drug-dealing mini-game.

Revealed in the latest Edge magazine, the drug-dealing feature lets you flog heroine, cocaine, weed, ecstasy, acid and downers. Selling the six type of drugs makes you a ton of in-game cash and help you gain experience of market conditions, says the mag.

Rockstar exec Dan Houser is also quoted:

We wanted to have a drug-dealing minigame in lots of the GTA games. We played with it a little in Vice City Stories, because it worked really well juxtaposed with the main story. It works well with what GTA is, with driving around the map, and it gives you another thing to think about – another layer or piece of the puzzle to keep you motivated. It does intersect with the main story, and things you learn from it work with the story, but it mostly runs on its own.

GP: In the video at left (sorry for the poor sound quality) Nintendo exec Cammie Dunaway announces GTA Chinatown Wars at this year’s E3.

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  1. mikese says:

    I do remember a game that was out in the 90’s called drug dealer your job was to buy low sell high, it may as well have been played in DOS. Then another where you got to grow pot and had to take care of it or it died. No one said anything about those games it’s not like people ended up in rehab programs because of them I just got better at investing.

  2. DavCube says:

    I was going more along the lines of how he gets off to school shootings so much.

    Figuratively, of course. *wink, fingers crossed*

  3. Chuma says:

    So it have a drug dealing mini game… so how is this more controversial as the drug dealing in the previous games?  Little Jacob anyone?

  4. Mr. Stodern says:

    Well, you’re not known for understanding anything nearly as well as we gamers, who are supposed to be borderline retarded, so how sad is that?

  5. sortableturnip says:

    I would believe this is more than just a "blip" just in the fact that once this becomes "news" it will make it’s way to a lot of media outlets, which is basically "free advertising", especially to stations which wouldn’t normally allow GTA advertising.

  6. SimonBob says:

    Am I the only one who was probably going to buy GTA:DS regardless of the content?  What kind of person says, "well, I wasn’t going to get it before, but now that I know it’s got a drug-selling minigame, I’m in!"  If this is really a media grab on the part of Rockstar, it’s a millimetre blip against the yardstick of their total advertising budget.

    The Mammon Industry

  7. sortableturnip says:

    Any kind of press, good or bad, will get people interested in the game.  And free press is the best kind of press.

  8. Chal says:

    Rockstar is just TRYING to bring the moral guardians down on them this time. There’s no other logical explanation for this.

  9. Leet Gamer Jargon says:

    Another double-post? I swear, if and when that "report spam" function is up and running again….


    Modified Sarge quote: "My favorite part is the part where you failed. Encore! Bravo."

  10. DavCube (not logged in) says:

    There are limits to the First Amendment, Mr. Thompson. I suggest you go back to Vanderbilt for any ten years and learn them.

    David "DavCube" Gagnon, Non-abuser of Speech, and You’re Not.

  11. DavCube (not logged in) says:

    Yeah, just like you’re familiar with that "sanction." Everything negative about you doesn’t exist, right Mr. Thompson? All the failures, all the disciplinary actions, it’s all a part of some conspiracy by the gay vampires running the ‘game industry’ and the ‘Florida Gay Bar,’ right?

    Take your ‘The End Is Nigh’ sign and stand out on the street corner with the rest of the crazy people.

    David "DavCube" Gagnon, Mature Human Being, and You’re Not.

  12. sortableturnip says:

    That would be #5, 8 and 9, Jack.

    Narcissistic Personality Disorder

    1. Behavior or a fantasy of grandiosity, a lack of empathy and a need to be admired by others. As indicated by at least five of the following:

    1. Grandiose sense of self-importance.
    2. Fantasies of and preoccupied with beauty, brilliance, ideal love, power, or unlimited success.
    3. A belief of being special and unique and can only be understood or a need to associate with people of high status.
    4. A need for excessive admiration.
    5. An unreasonable expectation of being treated with favor or excepting an automatic compliance to her / his wishes.
    6. Will use others to achieve her / his goals.
    7. Lacks empathy.
    8. Believes others are envious of her / him or is envious of others.
    9. Contemptuous or haughty attitudes / behaviors.
  13. DavCube (not logged in) says:

    No company has any sort of obligation to create products ONLY for a single audience. What, are you going to say that Viva Pinata should be a Wii exclusive? People can create what they damn well please.

  14. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    I’d be okay with this if it served an actual point and wasn’t just to stir up shit. I figure, if it’s okay to portray other criminal acts, why not drug dealing? ‘Cept they’re more than likely only doing this to feed sales.


    I wonder how they’re gonna work the controls?


    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! For information on games and psychology, look up: Jonathan Freedman(2002)Block & Crain(2007) Just to name a few…

  15. ofofof says:

    Apparently you’re not as familiar with my "settlement" with Take-Two as I am.  I’m all over it, and you don’t even know what "it" is.  How sad.  Jack thompson

  16. DarkTetsuya says:

    I think he means the whole ‘gay porn filing’ thing … (Or it could be the ‘bunny porn’ thing, LOL.)

    Either way those things would certainly guarantee an AO rating.

    — "Jack and listen are two words that don’t go together…just like Jack and sanity, Jack and truth, Jack and proof, Jack and win…" — sortableturnip |

  17. Father Time says:

    This is an outrage, I demand rockstar gives us the ability to trade meth and shrooms as well. Why must they discriminate against meth and shroom dealers? And how about perscription drug smugglers?

    6 drugs is not enough.

    Ok I’ll stop.

    I can’t believe though that soon I won’t be able to brag to DS owners that I can play GTA on the go (PSP owner). Oh well it’s about time Nintendo got some GTA flavor.

  18. Zen says:

    Almost 90% of the DS’s we sell in our store are to adults.  Me and my wife both have one, almost every adult friend that I have has one, and a good bit of the ones I see are owned and operated by adults.  That’s like trying to say an iPod is only for kids and shouldn’t allow music that isn’t for kids.


    Zen a.k.a. Jeremy Powers

  19. sortableturnip says:

    Maybe if they put a catchy jingle to it, like the mercenary game, no one will notice!

    "Oh no you didn’t!"

  20. Anonymous says:

    Maybe this game will actually have that non-existant point system that those people keep saying these games have.

  21. Father Time says:

    You know maybe the media won’t pick up on this. I haven’t heard anyone in the media complain about the radio ads or all the sexual innuendo in the grand theft auto series and lord knows that would give them something to crow about.

    Oh well one step closer to rockstar finally putting children in grand theft auto games. Tis a good thing.

    At least now when pundits say the game lets you deal drugs we won’t have to roll our eyes at that statement.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I agree with many of the other comments.  This is just a stupid idea intended to sell games by raising negative press.

  23. Anomalous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    The NDS?

    A kid-friendly system?

    Heh. These guys obviously have not touched anything remotely Japanese. Witch touching.

  24. Evilswissmiss says:

    I agree that there needs to be more freedoms in the gaming industry and that decisions for purchases should be left up to the parent, if the gamer is a minor.  However, wtf is Nintendo thinking?  The majority of DS owners are children.  This is lame in my opinion and an attempt at using negative press to sell a game that won’t be "all that".  Keep GTA on 360 and PS3 where it belongs.  Poor decision on multiple peoples parts.

  25. DavCube (not logged in) says:

    If not JT: Please at least TRY. (90% sure this is fake)

    If JT: You’re all over SOMETHING, but i’m pretty sure that something is something that would get a game labled AO.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Nothing wrong with that, besides, if people like Thompson didn’t get all up in arms over it, then yeah, it’d die, maybe not so much since GTA is a great franchise, and it’d sell, even more so since people like Thompson help it.

  27. HarmlessBunny says:

    Nope you are not, remember your settlement with Take Two?

    LOL, No you are not all over it you idiot. Go back to law school, you are obviously uneducated.

  28. Anonymous says:

    I tottaly agree, the controversy is all that sells their games, after all the hype the games, including GTA4, just fade away. something new and inovative would be great and even better if it didn’t rely only on controversy.

  29. Cheater87 says:

    I wonder how this will be played out??? Maybe like SR1’s drug dealing game or maybe more of a haggling type.

  30. black manta says:

    Big whoop.  As others have pointed out, there have been other drug dealing games before; Scarface and Saints Row were already mentioned.  Also add to the list the remake of NARC.  Few people got up in arms about those, GTA label on it or no.  Hell there’s a even a drug dealing game on Facebook called "Dope Wars" that one of my friends on there has.  So it’s not like anything new.

  31. Anonymous says:

    Who cares? it isn’t anything a freeware game for calculators hasn’t done alreddy?


    Ok so it isn’t anything new gameplay wise, but it is still going to attract controversy.

  32. Anonymous says:

    Why can’t GTA just die already.  The last thing the games industry needs is ANOTHER sequel.  I’d love to see some form of original IP from the Houser brothers.  They seem like talentless hacks that rely on controversy to sell video games.

  33. Paulrus-Keaton? ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Big deal. "Scarface" and "Saints Row" have drug dealing/traffiking games too.

    Only differences here is the DS and the variety of drugs.

  34. sortableturnip says:

    If it’s going to be an M rated game for DS, I don’t see the problem with it.  It’s not like the DS is showing you where to buy and sell ACTUAL DRUGS.  Hell, they could rename the drug names to the names of Gobots action figures and it wouldn’t make a lick of difference!

  35. the1jeffy says:

    Is that ‘Drug Wars’ homebrew for the TI-8X series calculator still making the rounds?  This DS mini-game sounds just like it, with better game tech.

    They started using those in grade school now, to avoid having to teach math, and letting the calculator spit out an answer for you.  Where’s the outrage, homebrews have no regulation!  At least any GTA game will be rated M.

    ~~All Knowledge is Worth Having~~

  36. Zevorick says:

    Actually, I’m a bit surprised and a bit relieved to see this kind of thing in the game. Since the history of drug laws is very… very racist (see first criminalization laws of opium and punishment for crack vs heroin just to name two examples) it’s interesting to see a game where race is apparently going to be an issue would involve the selling of drugs by the player. I was actually amazed it wasnt more prominent in GTA IV and other GTA related games.  What i’m really interested in seeing is how the punishment system for drugs is going to be implemented. Are there going to be bad drug deals? What about people overdosing and their family members blaming you? Drug stings? 

    Also, I don’t think people really have a right to be offended unless they show the main character selling to schoolyard/middle school aged children. That would rightfully cause a bit of a fuss. Speaking of rightfully caused fusses… where was the political outrage over a game for the TI-86 (graphing calculator) called pimpquest? What about DRUG WARS? Kids were playing that all through the day at my school, and nobody seemed to car. (Oh God, the text based mayhem!!!)

    Yes, people will get pissed, but yes they’ll get over it eventually. This won’t stop another GTA from being released.

  37. Magic Taco says:

    (Insert Random jack "douchebag" thompson quote here)

    Im taking a guess he is going to check this site and type some random crap.

    The wizard behind the curtain…MAGIC TACO!

  38. Anonymous says:

    I think it is because Rockstar doesn’t know any other way to advertise their games, then by generating a giant media frenzy by adding something controversial.  Doesn’t matter any more if the controversial item actually adds anything to the gameplay, it just has to be even more controversial then the last GTA game.

    imho very irresponsible on their part, given the anti-game sentiment it inevitably stirs up and the problems it causes for the rest of the industry.

  39. Jozu says:

    The funniest thing about Jack’s latest legal bluster? Someone writes:

    "Incoming old senile crackpot Florida lawyer with multiple personality disorders."

    and Jack assumes, "hey, that must be me!" So Jack, do you admit that you are a senile crackpot with mpd? And if so, why are you complaining when someone points it out? Either it applies to you, in which case it’s true, or it doesn’t, in which case you have no grounds to assume this post referred to you.

  40. HarmlessBunny says:

    Fantastic, this is going to garner more controversy than what anyone needs. *rolls his eyes* Can we say "will be used as a political scapegoat?" I know you can! Speaking of opportunistic governments and lawyers willing to jump on this…

    Incoming old senile crackpot Florida lawyer with multiple personality disorders.

  41. Anonymous says:

    What about in other countries where it’s the other way around. Something tells me that this won’t see the light of day in Austrila giving the Fallout 3 deal, though I don’t think Rockstar would cave the way Bethesda did and change all the versions.

  42. Anonymous says:

    Because its inevitable.  Heck, even when threads are not about GTA or him, he appears sometimes anyways, might as well get it over with.

  43. Jackalman says:

    It’s still amazing to me how people in this country think sex is more controversial/inappropriate than violence

    Seriously, which would you most likely run away from, some dude shooting people or a couple having casual sex in a supermarket…




  44. Anonymous says:

    Clearly hidden sex minigames wern’t controversial enough. I think the fairest thing you can say about their decision to include this in the game is that it’s a tad unwise

  45. Father Time says:

    Why must people summon him in every thread?

    Quick say his name three times fast and throw some salt over your shoulder and he’ll go away.

  46. Anonymous says:

    I have that game, its pretty cool, but no, it didn’t have the GTA label on it, so it passed right over the radar.

  47. cullarn says:

    now heres the thing thats gonna make you all laugh . . . remember the movie scareface?  did you know they made a game out of that (its actually pretty fun in my opinion) guess how you made money in that game? thats right buying and selling cocaine! in other words its been done before and the world didnt end

  48. King of Fiji says:

    I don’t see the point of adding it when lord knows GTA already has enough controversy to deal with. 

  49. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Here comes the lawyers, the senators, the goveneors, all ready to jump on another controversy.  Idk, this does seem kinda pushing the limit with the Game. I like the idea but I’m not so sure otheres will.

  50. Benjamin Snow says:

    Ready your arms and weaponry!  This won’t go down well.


    Of course, movies with drug dealing will win awards!  Video games with drug dealing will win controversy!

  51. King of Fiji says:

    Considering GTA already has enough to be controversial about you’d think they’d just skip on something like a drug dealing mini game.

    I mean its not a big deal as if kids do drugs from playing this game then lets blame the parents for not monitoring what their kids play but still for the sake of pointless controversy was such a mini game needed for the success of the DS GTA game? 


    Also lets play a game called "How Long Will It Be Before the Asian Community Gets Offended by This Game?"  xD

  52. Tarosan says:

    Yeah I agree… I thought I heard a scream of frustration.

    When Life gives you lemons, you find a new god.

  53. Geoff ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Alright gamers, get your supplies into the castle and raise the drawbridge.  We’ve got a long siege of negative press to look forward to. (again).

    Because of this, Madworld, Dead Space (just have this feeling it’s gonna cause sh*t as well), and Fable 2 (achievement points for completing sexual acts anyone?) I’m expecting alarmist barbarians at the gates within the next few months.

Comments are closed.