Take-Two, the parent company of GTA developer Rockstar Games, had filed a DMCA claim against the project which led to them being taken offline. But project lead “aap” filed a counterclaim despite telling Eurogamer that he was worried about a possible lawsuit.
But so far Take-Two has not responded to the counterclaim and the project files were once again made available for download. However this doesn’t mean that Take-Two has backed down, DMCA rules state that disputed content must be restored between 10 and 14 business days later unless the rights holder takes further action.
The counterclaim statement posted on GitHub reads: “the code in this repo was developed by reverse engineering object code that is not contained in this repo. We believe that any code in this repo that is similar to code or other content owned by Take-Two is either unprotected by copyright or is permitted under fair use.”
GTA III was originally released in 2001 for the PlayStation 2 and is credited with inventing the open-world genre. Its ’80s themed spin-off, GTA: Vice City, followed in 2002.
The projects, known as re3 and reVC, were both based on the source code reverse-engineered from the fan favourite GTA games. The code was made available on GitHub and added support for a variety of features such as widescreen mode, a debug menu, and debug camera.
Making the code open source means other fan developers are free to add their own improvements such as ray-tracing. Ports of GTA III and VC for other systems such as the Wii-U and PlayStation Vita are also possible.