GTA V was released in September 2013, and grossed $800 million in its first 24 hours alone! It had been hotly anticipated since its release was first announced two years earlier. Few anticipated it more than Dave Michalczul, a GTA mega-fan, and he was not disappointed. He, like many of us, threw himself into the world of Los Santos, a fictional city based on LA, and home to the game’s central characters. As he played the game, Dave began to notice just how much the geography and architecture of Los Santos resembled that of Los Angeles. So, he set off around LA armed with a camera, hoping to capture the similarities.
The results are awesome. I had been told that Los Santos bore some resemblance to LA, but I didn’t expect this attention to detail! So, scroll down the page to see Dave (and the GTA animators’) fantastic work.
Can you tell which is the game and which is reality?
Hotel on Sunset Blvd
Third Street Promenade
Artists Agency on Sunset Blvd
Building based on the Biltmore Hotel in Downtown, Los Angeles
Famous Chinese Theater in Vinewood/Hollywood
Church near Michael De Santa’s house
Santa Monica Ferris Wheel
The Richman/Beverly Hills Hotel
The Galileo Observatory and the Griffith Observatory
Pleasure Pier sign vs Pacific Park Sign
The Malibu Pier and Chumash Pier
Bishop’s WTF?! and Ripley’s Believe it or Not
The Del Perro Pier and the Santa Monica Pier
Del Perro and Santa Monica at sunset
Store fronts seen in the first trailer
Tunnels in Downtown Los Angeles
US Bank Building
Tequi-La-La/Whiskey A-Go-Go in West Vinewood/West Hollywood
Did you know? GTA V broke seven Guinness World Records within three weeks of its release!