Pre-release access to games through beta tests or various forms of early access have become so ubiquitous that we tend to expect it, especially when it comes to major titles. Grand Theft Auto V certainly qualifies as one of those, but Rockstar says in no uncertain terms that there will be no public beta for the game.
"Please note: There is no pre-release 'beta' test for Grand Theft Auto V," the message, written in white block caps on a stark black background, warns anxious GTA fans. "If you see ads or solicitations to join a beta program, beware as this is likely some kind of online phishing scam."
The message doesn't warn against any specific scam, but enticing gamers with the promise of free stuff is a relatively common practice. A FIFA World Cup scam went after EA Sports accounts over the summer, and phishers try to dig up Steam account information with almost admirable determination; the Malwarebytes Unpacked blog also recently warned of scams (opens in new tab) involving purported Xbox emulators.
As usual, the bottom line is simple: Always ensure that beta offers come through official channels, and always ensure that those channels are, in fact, official. The PC release of Grand Theft Auto V is scheduled for January 27, 2015.