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Meet the three main playable characters in Grand Theft Auto 5

Grand Theft Auto V Screenshot - 1127184

The eagerly-awaited December 2012 issue of GameInformer has finally released, giving GTA fans a heavy dose of Grand Theft Auto 5 details. As promised, the 18-page feature contained tons of information about characters, gameplay, and setting, but perhaps the most interesting aspect was that in GTA 5, you won't just be controlling one character. Rather, you'll be switching between a cast of three characters, all with different stories and personalities. In the article, GameInformer detailed all three of Grand Theft Auto 5's playable characters.

The reasoning behind this decision has to do with allowing more opportunities for "both narrative and gameplay flexibilit." It allows for a more  "diverse style of lead protagonist" while also giving the player a chance to experience "more of the world more quickly off-mission." Each character, according to GameInformer has "his own personality, motivations, and skillset."

The first character mentioned was Michael, the mysterious man from the announcement trailer. As it turns out, Michael is a highly successful former bankrobber who is now retired in living in luxury after making a deal with the FIB. Although he's sitting pretty on his earnings, Michael is miserable. He hates his wife, who spends all his money, and barely has any connection to his children. Needless to say, with his wife quickly burning through his cash, he "needs to get back into the game."

"When we started with Michael, the idea was an older guy who was very successful getting sucked back into the game," explained Rockstar's Dan Houser. "Of all the various stories we've told about bank robbers, thieves, and hit men over the years, this was a story - just as we thought with GTA 4 and Niko as an immigrant - that's got a lot of freshness to it."

The next character introduced was Trevor, the "drugged-out psychopath" who, in the demo, sets fire to a large truck. Other than the detail that he lives in Blain County — a "barren, rundown desert region filled with bikers and meth heads" — that's about all we know about him. The third and final playable character was Franklin, who was introduced as "cruising down Vespucci Beach looking for a car he's supposed to repossess for his boss."

"That contrast between three different experiences, geographies, and vibes to everything should be really strong, and I think it's something that gives the game a unique feeling where you're visiting these people's lives and seeing what they do," Houser said. "Within the story, you're going to know it because you're going to know what the other people know when you play as them."

For even more details about Grand Theft Auto 5 — particularly about the locations and gameplay — I suggest checking out the latest issue of GameInformer. The 18-page spread is filled with tons of information and images of the game - including a nice gameplay description of how the three characters work together on a heist and how you'll switch between the three of them during gameplay. The digital version is currently available now, while the print issue is expected to hit news stands on November 16.

Grand Theft Auto 5 is set to release in spring 2013 for Xbox 360 and PS3.

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Matt Liebl You can follow Senior News Editor Matt Liebl on Twitter @Matt_GZ. He likes games, sports, musicals, and his adorable dog, Wrigley. And his wife.
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