Grand Theft Auto 5 Release Date, News Update: Trailer Shows 3 Main Characters, Huge World, Snorkeling (VIDEO)

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Grand Theft Auto 5's release date is Sept. 17, and Rockstar has issued a news update in the form of a YouTube preview of the game. Along with the series' traditional features comes an expanded game world, a new style of gameplay featuring three separate protagonists, and a game that continues even when you're not playing it.

The Grand Theft Auto 5 release date is for Xbox 360 and Playstation 4, and the trailer starts off with a preview of the gameworld, which is modeled after southern California.

"The gameworld is beautiful, massive and diverse. A sprawling, satirical reimagining of modern southern California, covering mountains and oceans, expensive stores and strip malls, urban decay and untouched wilderness, beaches and backwoods, the sublime and the ridiculous," a woman's voice explains.

Instead of the traditional singular character in the past 14 iterations of Grand Theft Auto, there are now three characters: Michael, a successful ex-bank robber who now has a family; Franklin, a repo man for an Armenian car dealer; and Trevor, a former military pilot who spiraled into drug addiction. All three men come with their own special abilities as well: Michael has slow-motion, "Matrix"-style gunfire, Trevor's anger lets him do extra damage, and Franklin has slow-motion driving skills.

Furthering the difficulty and expanding the gameplay of Grand Theft Auto 5, the player can switch between all the men at almost any time to help complete a mission or to just see what their up to. Because their lives continue even while the console is powered down, they could be mid-meal or mid-police chase, depending on the character.

The game is more than just characters, however. New vehicles like a submarine are available, and missions can be completed in a variety of ways that players choose. Of course, side missions and quests are also available, but so are everyday activities: golf, swimming, riding jetskis and snorkeling were all featured in the trailer.

Grand Theft Auto 5 is already expected to break sales records in the U.K., according to sources. If that's any indication, the U.S. could follow suit.

At the end of the game's trailer, a Grand Theft Auto Online mode was mentioned, so Rockstar could have another trailer on the way before Sept. 17.

To see the trailer, click below (WARNING: Adult language, graphic content).