ByRob Harris, writer at
Sometimes I play video games.
Rob Harris

Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto franchise spans an epic timeline, comprising a sprawling crime saga told through no less than 15 games. The lives of their protagonists often intertwine, though you might still be wondering where exactly all the games fit within the franchise's grand canon.

Below you'll find all the GTA games in chronological order, as well as other notable events that occur both on and off screen.

Every GTA Game In Chronological Order


  • Life and all existence as we know it begins, according to the Epsilon Program.


  • GTA London 1961—a free expansion to GTA London 1969—takes place.


  • GTA: London 1969—a bonus mission pack for the original Grand Theft Auto—takes place. Duh.
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]


  • Sonny Forelli orders a hit on his former partner Tommy Vercetti, who is ambushed in Liberty City. Tommy is given the nickname 'The Harwood Butcher' after killing eleven hitmen, though he is arrested on the scene.
  • Tommy Vercetti is sentenced to fifteen years in prison, none the wiser as to who set him up.


  • Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories takes place.
  • Jittery law-bender Ken Rosenberg sets up his firm in Vice City.


  • Tommy Vercetti is released from Liberty City prison.
  • Grand Theft Auto: Vice City takes place.
  • Sonny Forelli reveals his betrayal to Tommy who promptly kills him in return.
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]


  • Carl Johnson's brother Brian dies in mysterious circumstances, which leads Carl to leave Los Santos and move out east to Liberty City.


[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
  • The Bosnian war begins. Niko Bellic fights on the Serbian side.
  • Carl Johnson returns to Los Santos after his mother is killed in a drive-by shooting.
  • Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas takes place.
  • Ken Rosenberg checks out of rehab in Fort Carson, San Andreas. Tommy Vercetti appears to have severed ties with him, refusing to return Ken's calls.
  • GTA III's Catalina and Claude meet, departing for Liberty City after giving CJ the deed to a garage in San Fierro.
  • Roman Bellic moves to Liberty City, opening his own taxi business.


  • Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories takes place.
  • Motorcycles are banned in Liberty City, conveniently explaining their absence in GTA III.
  • Yet to arrive in Liberty City, Catalina and Claude begin ripping off banks in Texas and New Mexico.
  • Niko Bellic begins searching for that "special someone" in Europe.


  • Grand Theft Auto Advance takes place.
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]


  • Catalina and Claude finally arrive in Liberty City. Catalina betrays Claude, shooting him during a robbery and leaving him for dead.
  • Grand Theft Auto III takes place.
  • After killing Catalina Claude leaves with Salvatore Leone's wife Maria. A gunshot is heard after the screen fades to black, suggesting Claude shoots Maria.


  • Michael Townley, Trevor Philips and Brad Snider rob a bank in Ludendorff. Brad is killed, Trevor escapes and Michael fakes his own death, cutting a deal with the feds.
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]


  • Niko Bellic leaves his home country to pursue the American Dream in Liberty City.
  • GTA IV takes place.
  • The Lost and Damned takes place.
  • The Ballad of Gay Tony takes place.


  • Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars takes place.


  • GTA 2 takes place.
  • Grand Theft Auto V takes place.
[Credit: Rockstar Games]
[Credit: Rockstar Games]


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