New GTA 5 mod educates on the real issue of sex trafficking 

©Rockstar Games

Content warning: This article discusses sex trafficking, prostitution and violence towards women.

A new Grand Theft Auto 5 mod has been created to educate young players about the real-life issues of sex trafficking. 

The mod was created with Swedish non-profit organisation Talita, who offer acute and long-term support to women who have been exploited in pornography, prostitution or as victims of sex trafficking. The charity is known for having safe houses all over Europe but has turned to Rockstar’s flagship game to reach a new wave of people to educate. 

GTA as a franchise in the past has poked fun at prostitution and sex trafficking in the usual tongue-in-cheek demeanour the brand is notorious for. Known for dark humour and taking risks, this mod is a far cry from the usual concepts Rockstar comes out with. Now there’s a female protagonist fronting the next instalment in the franchise (GTA 6 set for release next year) it’s refreshing to see women’s issues at the forefront of a new mod. 

The mod itself is dubbed Mission Talita, named after the charity. It’s been created to target young male gamers who are more impressionable in the hope of influencing people’s views of prostitution and sex trafficking. The mod recreates the real-life experiences of four victims who have been helped by the charity over the last six years, adding a sensitive light to the game by the bravery of the four survivors. 

In GTA 5, it’s possible to purchase in-game sexual encounters and inflict violence and murder on sex workers in the game. With the charity concerned this is the first experience young males have of attitudes towards women, the mod they have helped create flips this narrative on its head. 

In Mission Talita, instead of helping antagonists do unspeakable things to women, you will be intervening to save them from becoming victims. The mod also includes a brand new radio station which is in talk show format, discussing issues with prostitution and exploitation as well as including music from the band Swedish House Mafia. 

It’s a refreshing move from Rockstar to work with Talita and sets a welcome precedent for the next era of the franchise which is fronted by a female protagonist, Lucia. It is unsure if GTA 6 will focus on women’s issues, but it is being suggested this mod is the first Easter egg to the next instalment being more pro-women gamer-friendly. 

You can download the mod for the PC version of GTA 5 now via GTAV Mods.

Words by Maisie Hancox

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