Thumbing a ride
My GTA 5 Online garage, like yours, is filled with fancy cars. This week, I decided to leave them parked and spend my time getting around the map in a different way: by hitchhiking. In every session I joined, I stood by the side of the road, flagged down other players, and asked if they could give me a ride to the beach. Here's how it went.
I step out of my ritzy apartment to find a woman face-down on the sidewalk. Across the street, a player is yanking an NPC out of his car. Perfect! "Can you drive me to the beach?" I yell, waving. He speeds off without a word. Paramedics arrive, examine the dead woman, then depart, leaving her there. No one else drives by for a while, so I start walking.
Near an auto-body shop, a sharply dressed player pulls up in a souped-up jalopy and waits. I cross the street, waving and inquiring about a ride. He doesn't respond, but just as I get to the passenger door, he pulls away. Psyche! At least he didn't run me over. Other people do.
Pass on the right
This player is roaring along the road toward me. I wave and yell my request, and he sharply veers across four lanes of traffic. It seems promising except for the fact that he's not slowing down, even a little bit. He sideswipes me and I tumble to the ground, climb back to my feet, and then get knocked down again by a falling light pole. I guess that's a "No."
While standing on another corner, I spy a dot on my minimap headed right toward me at an alarming speed. I turn around just in time to get completely mashed by the driver. I get a brief flicker of something unusual about his wild, angry eyes, so I take a look at them in the editor.
Don't worry, be happy
He's wearing smiley-face contact lenses. Combine those with his furious expression, his history professor sweater vest, and the grim fact that he's just mowed me over without stopping, and it's a bit chilling.
Players aren't the only drivers running me down. Spend enough time on a street corner and you'll observe NPCs driving like jerks, too. This one was startled by something down the block, so she sped onto the sidewalk and knocked me into the street, then proceeded to knock me down three or four more times, screaming in alarm with each collision.
Another time, while trying to get the attention of a player parked at a curb, I heard someone honk. I turned and saw an NPC driver trying to squeeze by to my right. Then she simply floored it and ran me over, looking calmly into my eyes the entire time. At least she wasn't wearing freaky contact lenses.
A ride! I got a ride! A pleasantly understated player-driven vehicle screeches to a halt, turns around, smashes through a few cars, and then stops for me, honking the horn. I climb in and thank the driver. "Kill yourself," he responds. Okay. At least it's a ride! We roar off.
It becomes clear the driver is not taking me to the beach, because when I ask "Can you take me to the beach?" he says "Can you kill yourself?" "I placed a waypoint on the map," I continue. "Kill yourself." I decide to just sit silently for a while as he careens through the streets, terrifying pedestrians.
This is my stop
After five minutes of ramming, flipping, rolling, speeding, and repeated suggestions that I end my own life, it becomes clear this guy is never going to take me to the beach. I decide to let myself out at a random corner. Turns out I'm roughly two blocks from where he picked me up.
Naturally, I've been killed by players on foot. I've been shot, blown up, and beaten countless times. Not everyone I run into on foot shoots me, though. This masked fellow charges me from across the street, then walks around me cautiously pointing a rifle at my head. I wave, and he runs off without firing. Maybe it was the similarity in wardrobe that stayed his trigger finger.
Then there's this guy. He walks over wiggling both hands in the air, stopping six inches in front of me. I wave. He continues to stand there wiggling his hands. When I cross the street to stand an another corner, he follows, then gets right in my grill again, always with his jazz hands.
I know he's trying to test my patience, but he doesn't know I'm the guy who spent ten weeks walking across Skyrim. Some chump waving his hands in my face? It's like a vacation to me. I decide to take him to school. Long minutes pass as we stand inches apart. Shadows lengthen. The sun sets. The only movement is from his hands. Finally, he quits the session. I thought so. Rookie.
Later that night, a woman responds to my request for a ride, screeching up in a chrome-covered sports car and fixing me in its single working headlight. I climb in, and without much hope, set a waypoint at the coast. Wordlessly, she skids into a u-turn and speeds toward the beach.
Time and space
She drives so fast we begin outpacing the textures of the city, and we speed across gray nothingness for a while. Several times we actually outpace her car, floating in the air in front of it. We're breaking all natural laws, but we're making great time. She pulls up at the waypoint and I hop out, thank her, and clamber over the wall next to the highway.
Shoot the moon
I did it! I hitchhiked to the beach in GTA 5 Online. While I gaze at the moon and look at the waves, wondering why I hitchhiked to the beach in GTA 5 Online, there's a hiss next to my ear as several bullets zip past me. I turn and see that the driver who brought me here has climbed over the wall and is now shooting at me with a pink rifle.
I turn and run back up the beach toward her, figuring at least I can make myself an easier target. She sees me running, climbs back over the wall, hops into her car, and speeds away.
Thanks for the ride, stranger.