Were you surprised that Grand Theft Auto Online got off to something of a rocky start, with problems still in evidence all over the place?
Anyone who's suffered through the recent launch of an online-centric game -- be it an MMO or "always online" experience like Diablo III or SimCity -- will know that these things rarely go as planned, with "unprecedented demand" usually being the catch-all excuse for problems in the early days. And, as expected, Grand Theft Auto Online's barely functional launch has indeed been blamed on Rockstar apparently not being ready for the number of concurrent users that have been trying to play.
Problems have ranged from not being able to start the mode at all to being unable to get through the initial tutorial mission. Others still are finding themselves with progress wiped after a session, and others still have had issues when returning to single-player saves. Rockstar's been keeping the community updated on the issues they're aware of over on their support page, and claim to be working "around the clock" on solutions to the most common problems. Indeed, anecdotal evidence on social media seems to indicate that at least some people are able to get in and play the game now, though there are still seemingly numerous issues and bugs.
As part of its response to the predictable early game troubles, Rockstar has temporarily disabled the controversial option to purchase in-game currency with real money. Rockstar hasn't given specific reasons for this, but notes that the service will be reactivated when the play experience is more stable. Presumably some players have had issues with purchasing in-game currency and then losing their characters, effectively leaving them with absolutely nothing to show for their money spent.
Rockstar does report that several issues have been resolved, however, most notably a PlayStation 3 problem where a PSN server issue was limiting the number of possible concurrent users.
If you've been having technical troubles getting logged in to GTA Online or during play, Rockstar encourages you to contact the dedicated support team on its website or via Twitter. Gameplay feedback, meanwhile, may be sent to Rockstar's dedicated GTA Online email address so the team can take on board feedback regarding what people both like and dislike about the current experience. It will then, apparently, change over time according to what people have been most and least enthusiastic about.
We'll be bringing you some coverage of GTA Online... just as soon as we're able to actually get in and play! Have you had any success yet?