Grand Theft Auto just got a little more real thanks to one documentation’s efforts to preserve the events occurring in game.
Christopher Murray, a senior film editor for Laika, the studio behind animated successes Paranorman and Coraline, told Polygon that he hadn’t meant to document the game, but stumbled onto it during a play session.
“In a recent session, I was trying to evade repeated destruction by a tank, and I switched into passive mode in order to give me a chance at escape,” Murray told Polygon’s Megan Farokhmanesh.
After switching into passive mode, a mode that allows Grand Theft Auto players to wander around the sandbox game without fear of being chased down and killed, Murray thought it’d be interesting to follow the tank that was chasing him and photograph other players running from it.
Using the filter options of the in game camera, Murray begin shooting the players he’d follow or the scenes he’d witness in sepia, adding to the overall ambiance of “war photography.”
Murray told Polygon that what started out as simple interest has piqued into an earnest desire to explore the role as an experiment, adding that he eventually wanted to don a media vest. Murray’s Grand Theft Auto character can already be seen driving around in his vehicle of choice, a WEZL news van.
He isn’t the only one running around the vast city of Los Santos, taking photos of the devastating crime and street war breaking out constantly, either.
“In just a couple days, thanks to my posts on Reddit, the crew has close to 150 members out covering the never-ending battles unfolding across San Andreas,” Murray said.
It’s an interesting approach to playing the open world game, where players can do anything and be anybody they can dream up. It’s one of the first massive approaches to preserving in game action and documenting the constant ongoings Grand Theft Auto Online players face. From the strife to the victories, Murray and his team of freelance photojournalists are on a mission to tell the true stories of Los Santos.
Would you join Murray’s crew and document what was happening in Grand Theft Auto?