Before the release of any Grand Theft Auto game, there were features that were removed from the final product. These changes range from deleted vehicles and player skins to the removal of entire characters and mission strands.
- 1 Grand Theft Auto 2
- 2 Grand Theft Auto III
- 3 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
- 4 Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
- 5 Grand Theft Auto Advance
- 6 Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
- 7 Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
- 8 Grand Theft Auto IV
- 9 Grand Theft Auto: The Lost and Damned
- 10 Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony
- 11 Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
- 12 See Also
- 13 References
Grand Theft Auto 2
- The vehicles in the beta version looked vastly different, and were more detailed. Several cars also never appeared in the final version.
- A weapon called the "Microwave" was removed.
- A weapon called the "Instant vehicle bomb" was removed.
- A weapon called the "ElectroBaton" was removed.
Grand Theft Auto III
- Claude's appearance went through many different designs. Some screenshots show a poorly detailed Claude, who looks completely different from the final version. Other pictures show a more final Claude with different hair and a chubbier appearance.
- Curtly was removed from the final version.
- The character of Darkel, a revolutionary domestic terrorist, was cut.
- Tom Novy was meant to make an appearance in the game as himself, but was removed along with his song, "Back to the Streets" for unknown reasons.
- 8-Ball's name was originally going to be Mullan.
- Joey Leone's original surname was Sorvino.
- Salvatore's original name was Frankie Sorvino.
- The Liberty City Triads originally had a black outfit.
- Certain player skins, accessible with cheat codes, were removed.
- Elderly pedestrians with walkers were removed.
- Children were planned for the game.
- Police Officers originally had moustaches.
- The LCPD Police and the Enforcer vehicle liveries were changed from then-current NYPD blue with white stripes to LAPD-style black and white.
- Army Helicopter was cut.
- Driveable School Buses were cut.
- The Dodo's wings were cut down - They probably made this change to fit the vehicle into the Import/Export garage in Portland.
- The Esperanto, and possibly the Idaho, had hydraulics.
- There were many vehicles on the Capital Autos website that were changed or did not make it in the final game.
- The Manana was called Ariant.
- The Moonbeam was called Aster.
- The Sentinel was called Beamer.
- The Infernus was called Dyablo.
- The Esperanto was called Esparanto.
- The Idaho was called Hachura.
- The Patriot was called Hum Vee.
- A box van similar to the the Mule, called Luton was cut.
- The Perennial was called Maurice.
- The Bobcat had a different look. It originally had a rollcage.
- The Panto was cut.
- The Cheetah was called Rocket.
- The Kuruma was called Sentinal.
- The Stinger was called Shark.
- The Blista was called Space.
- The Cartel Cruiser was called Columbia.
- The Securicar was called Security Van.
- The Yakuza Stinger was called Yakuza.
- An unknown vehicle that appears in green on a picture was cut from the game, it is believed by fans that the car was called Brigham.
- The Yardie Lobo had a blue and yellow design. It's not known if this was the primary color, or a secondary color.
- Some, but not all, of Darkel's missions were subsequently given to other characters. It is said that Darkel had 13 missions for Claude that most of it was cut.
- A mission that involved flying the Dodo was cut.
- Originally, when doing Vigilante, Paramedic, or Firefighter missions, the vehicles radio could go out of range - requiring the player to drive closer to the nearest police station/hospital/fire station.
- A mission where you need to bomb a school bus full of children was cut due the violence and gore.
- The Old School Hall changed appearance. It previously looked newer and lit up.
- Punk Noodles was originally just with a small grass park with two statues. The statue model still exists in the game's files.
- In the beta, the airport was once in Staunton Island and there are many roads in Shoreside Vale. Callahan Bridge is also absent.
- The tunnel consisting upstates may have been a clue to a beta city.
- The airplane landing at Francis International Airport was destroyable with a Rocket Launcher.
- The ability to blow limbs off of non-playable characters was cut, but only from the PS2 version of the game.[] This can still be activated in the PS2 version via cheat codes.
- You could originally run with the baseball bat.
- Online multiplayer was cut.
- The graphics were originally "cartoonish".[]
- A very early HUD was very different.
- The radar was light blue instead of yellow.
- One of the missions was marked with a head on the radar.
- The ability to name the character, much like in Grand Theft Auto, was cut. An unused line of text reads "[DEFNAM] Claude----------------------" - interestingly, this confirms that the protagonist’s name is Claude.
- Unused lines of text within the game's text files contain phrases, such as "You're perfectly healthy, get out of here!" and "I'll just fix you up". These lines of text seem to imply that the game's hospitals were, originally, accessible/useable.
- The "Busted!" text and target arrows were originally red instead of blue.
- The song "Back to the Streets", was deleted out of the track with no explanation.
- Grand Theft Auto III was originally going to be released for GameCube.
- The Baseball Bat was originally red and yellow.
Some of these changes are thought to have been as a result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, although others were made well before that time.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
- A character called Mr. Moffat was removed from the game.
- Tommy Vercetti was older and wore a blue Hawaiian shirt. 
- Diaz's name supposedly called was Fernando Diaz.
- Pastor Richards was scheduled to give protagonist Tommy Vercetti a mission in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
- BJ Smith was originally named BJ Jones.
- The Blista Compact originally looked almost identical to the Honda CRX, it even featured the letters 'GPX' on the back. 
- The Infernus had thin rectangles for its headlights and taillights. 
- The Moonbeam was originally implied as having sliding rear doors. 
- The Police Car was originally white with red and blue stripes, similiar to early Miami police cars. 
- The Sentinel originally had a different rear styling. 
- The Virgo originally had a different look. Its beta model is still inside Vice City's files, named "Cougar", implying that the beta Virgo was named the Cougar. 
- The Washington had different frontal styling. 
- The Sabre Turbo had a different front grille, as seen in the GTA Vice City Trailer Video.
- The Mesa Grande's beta name was Desperado.
- A helicopter called Coastguard Maverick was cut during development.
- The Patriot's original GTA 3 model can be seen in early screenshots.
- The Cabbie's original GTA 3 model can be seen in early screenshots.
- Kaufman Cabs was originally white and newer.
- The Angel has another texture with different colors.
- The beta texture from taxi can be seen from afar
- It is believed by some fans that trash collecting missions based on the Paramedic missions were in the beta.
- Fort Baxter Air Base originally included an air traffic control tower and a runway. The runway is totally absent, but the tower can still be seen in the distance from Vice Beach.
- There was no stadium in the beta.
- The northeast part of the beach didn't exist.
- Vice Port has a waterway and ships are absent.
- There are no shacks in the sea.
- Some roads didn't exist in the beta version.
- There were no rocks and even the lighthouse is absent.
- There were bus shelters around the city. The bus shelter model, bustopm.dff, is still inside Vice City's file. 
- The long road from the police station going to the Ammunation is absent in the beta map.
- The Deli across from the Little Havana Police station had it's large Exploder billboard replaced with a different, smaller one. 
- A Grenade Launcher was cut.
- The beta MP5 looked shorter and very different, it can be seen in the Intro of GTA Vice City
- The PSG-1 didn't have a silencer in the beta.
- There is a model and textures for an AK-47 in the game files. However, it has never appeared in any of the screen shots or trailers for the game. What some fans claim to be an AK-47 in one of the trailers, is actually the Ruger with its brown texture from the PS2 version of the game.
- There was a Tazer, a Nailgun and Landmines in the beta version, textures exist in the game files.
- The shotgun from GTA III was originally in the game.
- Shown on a poster featured in the flash version of the official website, there was a silenced Ingram.
- The M4 had a longer barrel and a different aim in the beta.
- Kruger (or Ruger in the original PS2 version) had wood parts and a longer barrel.
- The Colt Python was renamed to .357 in later versions of GTA Vice City, possibly to avoid copyright and trademark infringements.
- There was orginally a Steyr Aug in the beta version, files of exist in the PS2 Version.
- There were many phone conversations between Tommy and Mercedes Cortez. 
- There were many lines cut from characters such as Kent Paul, Umberto Robina, Mercedes Cortez, Mr. Moffat and BJ Smith in Sunshine Autos. []
- Tires were able to be slashed and recorded into the stats. 
- There was going to be an additional outfit called "MC Tommy," but it was taken out. It was originally a brown biker jacket that could be found in Howlin' Petes Biker Emporium
- The Haitian gangster who wears the blue shirt used to have a picture on the shirt instead of the word "Relax". 
- Players were able to shoot from helicopters as shown in a trailer.
- There was once a blonde haired prostitute with pigtails and a red skirt. She was supposed to appear around the streets of the downtown area, and dance in the Malibu Club as shown in several trailers.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
Out of all the Grand Theft Auto games, San Andreas may have had the most changes before release. For the first and only time in the series, there were animals in the game, the player was able have uncensored sex, drink, and do drugs. There were many interiors that were left unused, though many remain in the game files. There were a considerable amount of missions cut, as well as numerous weapons, vehicles and character models.
- Characters including Officer Carver, Larry and Poncho were removed.
- Both Sweet and Big Smoke had their appearances changed. Sweet was originally dressed in black and wore a black beanie, Big Smoke wore a white jersey and did not wear a hat, exposing his shaved head.
- Kendl Johnson's facial model and clothing were altered.
- Gang members looked different and wore different clothing.
- Each city had its own motorcycle cop model , whereas in the final release the same model is used for all cities (The beta cop models can still be found on the game´s files).
- The Bullet had a different look.
- The Clover had different taillights.
- The Savanna had a different grille 
- The Sadler was meant to be Ryder's car, instead of the Picador.
- The Jester had a different front bumper.
- The Reaper had a different design.
- A very early screenshot showed a Sparrow in place of a Police Maverick. Some believe that either the Maverick model wasnt finished yet, or at one point the Sparrow was going be used as a second Police aircraft.
- Many previews publicated before games' release told about 425 vehicles included in-game.
- There are many deleted missions which include The Truth is Out There and Impounded, or missions with different objectives which include Doberman, Photo Opportunity and Beat Down on B Dup.
- During the mission Saint Mark's Bistro, CJ had communication with Francis International air traffic control.
- Fish in a Barrel was supposedly an actual mission instead of a mere cutscene.
- In Sweet's Girl, originally Sweet did not have a gun, so CJ escorted him out.
- In Photo Opportunity, unused text implies that CJ hijacked and used a helicopter.
- There was going to be a mission involving a search for Big Smoke.
- There was going to be different a race in Los Santos Stadium.
- According to cut text, San Andreas was going to have a Mission Pack.
- Originally, if Carl Johnson killed a pedestrian, a news van would arrive and the crew would report on the event.
- If Carl crashed into a lamp post a mechanic would arrive to fix it. If the player killed the mechanic the lamp post would remain broken for a time, even if the player left the immediate area.
- The Mulholland Safehouse seemed to have a full interior that can be seen from the outside. The change on final version causes a glitch which allows the player to go through the wall.
- Donut shops such as Rusty Brown's Ring Donuts were places Carl Johnson could eat.
- San Fierro in the beta had very few docks and more parks. The beta map of San Fierro was very detailed and can be seen in Driving School.
- The construction yard near the hospital in Downtown Los Santos had a crane.
- The Easter Naval Base had a different outline, it had a dock and the ship is missing.
- San Andreas was much bigger and had several different land masses, such as a larger San Fierro (which resesmbled San Francisco more closely), A full beta map of San Andreas can be found on a wall in the Lil Probe inn.
- Las Venturas had a different name by the initials "LG". In early screen shots of Las Venturas, Police Cars had the initials "LG" printed on their doors.
- Santa Flora Medical Center had 2 helipads on its roof. These pads were most likely meant for the Maverick and Raindance that spawn there in the alpha. Oddly enough, these helipads were absent in the alpha, so the choppers simply spawned on the roof.
- The Clown's Pocket Casino was originally called The Ringmaster, its original name can still be seen on the paper map included inside the game box.
- The Skateboard was cut from the final game (its icon is still on the disk, and it can still be used but only as a weapon).
- Strategy guides and other prints speak of a Gun Cane available alongside the Cane. The Gun Cane does not appear anywhere in the game.
- The Parachute was originally smaller and blue (it can be seen in the demonstration video in Flight School showing how to control parachute).
- Animals that would roam the rural areas were cut. (Their models are still available in the game's files, albeit without their AI present)
- Originally, there were over 300 gang territories to be taken over all over the map.
- The ability to create and run your own casino was taken out after the alpha version.
- Usable car-washes, similar to those in GTA IV, were cut.
- The ability to ride the Trollies in San Fierro was cut.
- Early magazine previews showed that cops would hold on a vehicle's bumper if the player tried to speed away.
- The mobster who Carl kills in Saint Mark's was originally going to be called Marco Forelli but due to deleted audio, his name was never mentioned in the final version.
- The Grove Street Families were originally going to be called The Orange Grove Families.
- Gangster would walk into accessible places like safehouses, stores, etc.
- Pool tables were originally going to be colored green instead of blue.
- The motor bikers had a different design.
- Carl Johnson would be able to use drugs, which would make the camera wobble around making it hard to control CJ.
- The ability to drink beer was cut from the alpha version
- Through the hidden interiors universe unused Brothels can be found, these were most likely to be placed on top of Strip Clubs.
- Pre-release magazine articles showed that stealing cars was to be much more difficult. In early screen shots, car jacking was shown to involve smashing the car's window and then hot wiring it. This was all removed, possibly due to the limitations posed by the PS2. A similar system is present in GTAIV.
Grand Theft Auto Advance
- The Barrel was cut from the final version.
Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories
- The police cars were originally blue before being changed to the same black-and-white design seen in GTA III.
- There was a golden Stinger in the BETA.
- There was a golden PCJ-600 that was cut.
- There was an orange Landstalker that was removed.
- There was a blue Perennial in the BETA.
- Bullion was cut.
- Cyclone GT was cut.
- Lancer MF1 was cut.
- Tommy was cut.
- Skoiloine was cut.
- According to .gxt file, there was going to appear Impreza WRX and Toyota Supra.
- The Liberty News cut-scenes were cut.
- Toni's casual clothes were a purple shirt with a green vest.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories
- Bryan Forbes originally had a mustache
- An unnamed motorcycle (possibly a different Streetfighter or PCJ-600) was cut.
- Ambassador was cut.
- Coastguard Maverick was cut again.
- VCPD Enforcer was originally named Enforcer.
- FBI Rancher was cut. However, it can be spawned through cheat device.
- Kuruma was cut.
- VCPD Cruiser was named Police.
- According to screen-shots, there was going to be a mission where Bryan and Vic were attacked by the Mendez Cartel.
- In the mission, Last Stand, there was an additional man that Vic had to kill other than Martinez and Diego Mendez. It is widely believed that the third man is Armando Mendez.
- The Casual clothes were originally yellow.
- Tattoo Parlors, similar of those in San Andreas, were cut.
- The Army Fatigues originally had USMC on the shirt, suggesting that Vic would join the Marines instead of the army.
- The Fort Baxter Air Base said "Sempter F1" on one of the building.
Grand Theft Auto IV
- Buses were planned as a form of public transportation, much like taxis.
- The Coach was cut from the final version, although it can be seen briefly in the commercial for Higgins Helitours.
- Taxis have a black variant, as seen in Vlad's video.
- The Enforcer was originally a Boxville.
- The Merit had a different grill.
- The Annihilator was missing its yellow stripe.
- The Helitours Maverick was originally replaced by normal Mavericks.
- The Marbelle looked more like the Ford Granada it was primarly based on. 
- The Dodo plane was planned, evident because the handling model can still be found in the game's files.
- The Andromada plane was planned, evident because the handling model can still be found in the game's files.
- The SWAT Tank or another vehicle linked to SWAT was planned. It was likely an APC, which was later represented on The Ballad Of Gay Tony DLC.
- The Previon was cut.
- The mission involving killing lawyer Tom Goldberg was originally called Small Fish in Big Pond.
- Missions American Dad, Jacob's Ladder, American Dream and I and High were cut.
- In the Deconstruction for Beginners, Niko was used to destroy some warehouses.
- There were originally women police officers.
- A mobster, Raymond Alberga, was deleted from the final version.
- Little Jacob originally did not wear glasses.
- Michelle had a different looking face.
- Playboy X used to have a plain maroon hoodie.
- Some areas named Anger Bay, Norfolk, Jefferson Heights, Acter Bay, Richmond and Frogtown were cut.
- Fingerless gloves were probably available during game play. Pre-release screen-shots and videos of the PC version also show Niko with fingerless gloves but were still not available in the game. They still however can be found in the game files.
- Binco was going to be the first clothing store. It is replaced by the Russian Shop.
- Beta weapons include a Silenced 9mm, Pool Cue, and Revolver.
- In an early preview, Little Jacob would sell a rocket launcher to Niko. It was originally attached to the underside of his truck.
- As mentioned in early previews or heard in trailers there were several songs that were removed from the final version:
- Burn it all Down - VHS or Beta
- Downtown Swinger - MOP
- Cocaine - Humble Pie
- Hollaback Girl - Gwen Stefani
- How About Some Hardcore - MOP
- Get Up, Stand Up - Bob Marley & The Wailers
- UNKLE (feat. Josh Homme) - Restless
- Res - They Say Vision
- Junior Kirkstart - The Go! Team
- Fat Joe - Shit it Real
- In the alpha, they was an original GTA III radio station, Head Radio.
- The first removed haircut design for Niko was a cut that seemed to resemble helmet-hair.
- The second removed haircut design for Niko was a buzz cut.
- The Well Stacked Pizza Co. was originally meant to return but removed before release. Outside Pizza This, the employees are still seen sporting the logo and some with "Well Stacked Pizza Co." on the back of their shirts. This may also indicate that this once once the original location for one of the stores.
- Pedestrians were to carry planks. A model is still present in the game files.
- According to previews, Niko could climb telephone poles.
- Niko would have been able to get limo rides just like taxi rides.(?)
- Niko would originally bring prostitutes to his home.
- According to the model names of Roman's taxi depot, he was originally supposed to do limos. This may have a connection with the limo rides mentioned above.
- There were seagulls flying around the city, like in GTA San Andreas.
Grand Theft Auto: The Lost and Damned
- The Tampa was originally supposed to spawn around Liberty City. Now, it is limited to the beginning cutscene.
- Content from the mission Politics was cut.
- A Game Informer preview states Johnny could originally change outfits.
- According to previews, Johnny had the access to date girlfriends.
- The Rhino was cut from the final version.
- The Bati 800 was originally called Bati 801.
- The Bati Custom was originally called Bati 801R.
- The Double T Custom was originally called Double T Drag.
- The Hakuchou Custom was originally called Hakuchou Drag.
- The beta Diabolus looked different.
Grand Theft Auto: The Ballad of Gay Tony
- The Brickade was cut from the final game.
- The Skylift looked more like its real-life counterpart, the Sikorsky S-64 "Skycrane".
- An early interview stated that there would be a random character encounter where a crazy ex-girlfriend of Luis would rig a bomb to his car (possibly Margot).
- Tony wore different glasses
Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars
- According to rumors, a tank that could drive through water called the "Sea Dragon" was going to be included in the game.
- The alpha map looked very different.
- GTA 2 Beta Vehicles - WikiGTA.org
- Grand Theft Auto 3 First Impressions - Gamespot.co.uk retrieved from Internet archive
- Capital Autos - Rockstargames.com
- FEN_PLA: Number of players: FEN_TY0: Deathmatch FEN_NCI: NOT CONNECTED TO THE INTERNET in American.gxt
- Beta Radar Icon - GTAForums.com
- Tommy Vercetti
- Blista Compact
- Police Car
- Sentinel - Gouranga.com
- Virgo - Gouranga.com
- Washington - Gouranga.com
- Bus Shelter
- Bus Shelter Mod
- Page 13 of the Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Manual, "Street Racing".
- text\american.gxt>MAIN>TYRESLA>Tires slashed with a blade
- Page 5 of the Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Manual, "Population and People".
- text\american.gxt>CASIN10>CAS11BA>This is private flight CJ101 on approach to Liberty, over.
- Mulholland Safehouse
- GTA IV Sedan