Red Dead Redemption map mod for GTA 5 has been canceled

The Red Dead Redemption V modding team were "contacted" and will not continue the project.

Red Dead Redemption V, the mod that was going to recreate the wild west game's map inside of Grand Theft Auto V, has been canceled. It was revealed last month, and modding team .White had planned to release a beta this summer. However, shortly after the team released a teaser trailer—which was quickly taken down—lead modder Mr. Leisurewear announced that the team had been "contacted" and would cancel the project.

"I know this is hard pill to swallow, but as you may have noticed we did get contacted," Mr. Leisurewear wrote on GTAForums.com. "And we sadly have to say we are stopping this project. So thanks guys, we were all so happy to see this, but it isn't going to happen, sorry."

Mr. Leisurewear didn't reveal who contacted them at first, later confirming that it was indeed Take Two. However, because of some users' confusion, he did want to clarify that the mod was "never going to be a 'PC port.'" 

"It was just gonna be the map," he explained. "Undertaking this sort of a project with additional content ported over was never feasible... we were only gonna get a way to convert the map with both legal copies of each game, and some custom scripted additional content... there was never any intention or mention to either port a story mode over from RDR to V."

When told by forum users to hold on to the files, Leisurewear replied, "Why would I throw away 3 years of work... that's insane, man." I'm no lawyer, but Mr. Leisurewear planning to hold on to his files—which is understandable—doesn't necessarily spell anything positive for fans hoping to ride through Armadillo in GTA V. Speaking to this, he addressed the .White toolkit, which some members of the forums have asked Mr. Leisurewear to release in order to bolster the GTA V modding scene.

"Also, to anyone asking for the .White toolkit, sadly I'm ordered to not release anything," he said. "And I will probably get a lawsuit if I do officially (which I dont have right now)."

There is a long history of companies forcing modders and fan developers to shut down their work. DoomRL, the free fan-made roguelike, is one that comes to mind. It launched way back in 2002, but Bethesda parent company ZeniMax issued a takedown late last year. Another notable case was when Nintendo shut down the excellent fan-made Metroid II remake

It's a shame when this happens, because fans tend to create fun, unique ideas out of beloved games and characters that aren't necessarily explored by the official rights holders. Anything Red Dead Redemption-related on PC definitely fits into that category.