Rockstar awards $10K USD to GitHub user ‘t0st’ for fixing GTA load speeds.
If you’ve ever played GTA Online on PC, you might have noticed some seriously slow load speeds. Literally five to six minutes of waiting. Not anymore! Thanks to the diligent work of GitHub user t0stercx, Rockstar is now rolling out a software update.
Isn’t it inspiring when a dedicated fan of a game puts in the effort to fix a widespread problem? After ‘t0st’ shared their findings publicly, it seems that Rockstar took notice. With their own developers on the case, they discovered that t0st’s research was absolutely correct. As t0st explains, “there’s a single thread CPU bottleneck while starting up GTA Online. It turns out GTA struggles to parse a 10MB JSON file,” which is a file that features a list of every item players can buy in the game. The article by t0st describes a technical solution and asks that Rockstar “please do something about it.”
“After a thorough investigation, we can confirm that player t0st did, in fact, reveal an aspect of the game code related to load times for the PC version of GTA Online that could be improved,” Rockstar said in a statement. “As a result of these investigations, we have made some changes that will be implemented in a forthcoming title update.”
Shortly after, the game developers began implementing the recommended changes and an update to the PC version of GTA 5 went live on March 16. Many gamers are already reporting huge performance improvements!
As a result, Rockstar has given t0st a $10,000 USD payment (roughly $12,447 CAD) through their Bug Bounty program, which is intended to be used when fans discover security or privacy bugs in the software. However, in this case Rockstar decided that t0st’s findings warranted the large cash prize. Some might argue that t0st deserves more for making such a huge QOL improvement that the Rockstar devs didn’t discover on their own. But with a lump sum and their highly credible findings now being shared all over the internet, it’s likely that t0st will continue to get the recognition that they deserve.