GTA Vice City almost became Aberdeen Zombie Invasion the game


GTA Vice City Zombie - characters from Vice City with zombies around them

After completing Vice City, the GTA team was apparently working on a potential zombie game taking place in Scotland. Sandwiched between Vice City and San Andreas, the project would have been a change of pace for the team, but, in the end, it wasn't meant to be.

This is according to the former studio's technical director Obbe Vermeij, who worked in Rockstar from 1995 to 2009. In his blog, the developer recalls many of the projects he's worked on, among these is "Z" (pronounced Zed), a zombie game which would have used "the Vice [City] code as is".

"The game was to take place on a windswept foggy Scottish island. The player would be under constant attack from zombies", the developer describes. Acquiring fuel was a big part of the game, since the player used vehicles to get around the island.

The director mentions the studio "worked on Z [...] maybe a month or so", but work quickly stopped. Apparently, the studio found the idea too depressing to continue, since "even the people who originally coined the idea lost faith". Rockstar would, instead, return working on San Andreas.

But that's not all. After San Andreas was completed, the developer recalls the studio really wanted to work on something which wasn't at all GTA-related. They start working on a James-bond like game. "We did a demo doing some spy stuff in San Andreas. I think there was a hang glider and a car turning into a submarine or something".

The director mentions that everyone seemed to like the idea and half of the team started working on it, along with Rockstar San Diego. "The game was to be set in the 70s, be more linear than gta with a number of locations. There was a French Mediterranean city, a Swiss ski resort, Cairo and [...] a big shootout with lasers in space."

In the end, though, that project kept losing steam as the time to start working on GTA IV started getting closer and closer. "It became clear that Jimmy [the project's name] was going to be too much of a distraction for us and we ditched it. I think it was handed over to another company within R* but never got completed."

We might never get to see a zombie game taking place in Scotland, or a Rockstar James Bond game. But not all is lost. You can play the Zombie Apocalypse mod for GTA V, get a fog machine and eat some haggis. Guaranteed, it is that same vibe.

For more articles like this, take a look at our News page.