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All of GTA Online's heists, ranked

best GTA Online Heists
(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Grand Theft Auto 4’s Three Leaf Clover bank robbery mission made such an impression back in 2008 that Rockstar built its next game around it. Heists are at the core of GTA 5’s single-player mode, and when the crime sim breached PC shores in 2015, it added the elaborate, high-stakes schemes to its online component. 

Now with seven heists to choose from, I’ve ranked the existing haul from worst to best. Read on to discover the jobs that gave me joy, and the capers that made me curse.

All GTA Online heists from worst to best

7. Series A Funding

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: High-end apartment, Heist planning room
Setup cost: $40,400
Potential earnings: $202,000 (easy), $404,000 (normal), $505,000 (hard)
Number of players: 4

If watching The Wire has taught me anything, it’s that stealing fictional drugs from fictional dealers is a messy and chaotic business, albeit an entertaining one so long as your name is Omar. But when the task is framed by an over-elaborate, multi-tiered fetch and retrieve quest set inside a video game, that fun quickly turns to tedium. Steal and sell. Rinse and Repeat. Don’t get me wrong, fleeing a crime scene on jet-skis during Series A’s coke setup is a good laugh, but make sure you come packing Heavy Armor lest you sink quicker than Bubbles on a comedown. 

6. The Prison Break

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: High-end apartment, Heist planning room
Setup cost:
$40,000
Potential earnings: $200,000 (easy), $400,000 (normal), $500,000 (hard)
Number of players: 4

I loved Prison Break, and have always yearned for a Grand Theft Auto-flavoured take on the plight of Lincoln Burrows. Job number two of GTA Online’s 2015 heists update roster is hardly that, but it does offer the best and worst of the game’s multiplayer busts. Stealing a prison bus and losing the cops is a pain in the arse, but infiltrating Bolingbroke Penitentiary as a prisoner and a guard is tense and exciting. Once inside, getting your cover blown no matter how stealthily you play it is frustrating, but stealing a Buzzard chopper and picking up your escapee pals on the beach is good fun. It’s an uneven experience, but a fine example of the circumstantial joy GTA Online’s heists can offer.

5. The Humane Labs Raid

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: High-end apartment, Heist planning room
Setup cost:
$54,000
Potential earnings: $270,000 (easy), $540,000 (normal), $675,000 (hard)
Number of players: 4

There are too many finicky stealth sections for this caper to rank higher, but any mission which involves stealing and flying fighter jets to the tune of Highway to the Danger Zone is undeniably entertaining. I don’t even like Top Gun. I’m just a sucker for the pop culture nods scattered throughout GTA.   

4. The Fleeca Job

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: Rank 12 or above, high-end apartment, Heist planning room
Setup cost:
$11,500
Potential earnings: $57,500 (easy), $115,000 (normal), $143,000 (hard)
Number of players: 2

The Fleeca Job is fourth on this list for two reasons. It can be played with just two players (as opposed to four) and it grants you access to the Armored Kuruma discount. This two-person bank robbery is the easiest to organise and access, as well as demanding a fair split of labour. While the payout isn’t great compared to the other heists, it can be rattled through at speed once you’re familiar with each step. Also: Is there a better GTA car than the Armored Kuruma? Besides the Bravado Banshee, absolutely not.    

3. The Pacific Standard

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: High-end apartment, Heist planning room
Setup cost:
$100,000
Potential earnings: $500,000 (easy), $1,000,000 (normal), $1,250,000 (hard)
Number of players: 4

The final part of this heist (known as the Pacific Standard Job) is the apex of GTA Online thievery. Hostages? Yes. Cracking vaults? Uh-huh. Pissing off the police? Of course. It’s Heat, Point Break and GTA 4’s Three Leaf Clover all rolled into one. The only weak link is the escape, which involves motorbikes and leaves you vulnerable to getting shot and dropping stolen cash as you scarper. Otherwise, The Pacific Standard is a brilliant spectacle.

2. The Diamond Casino

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Prerequisites: Arcade
Setup cost:
$25,000
Potential earnings: $2,115,000 – $3,390,000 (normal), $2,326,500 – $3,619,000 (hard)
Number of players:
2-4

The Diamond Casino heist is GTA Online’s most sophisticated yet. It allows for three different approaches. 'Silent & Sneaky' sees you attempt to go undetected throughout. 'Aggressive' involves fighting and murdering everyone (including the LSPD and NOOSE). Finally, there’s 'The Big Con', where you and your buddies don disguises and carry concealed ceramic guns which pass freely through metal detectors. The latter is evidently inspired by Ocean’s Eleven, but it also has a whiff of Hitman about it, with plenty of scope for experimentation. Jackpot.

1. The Doomsday Heist

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)
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Prerequisites: Facility

The Data Breaches
Setup cost:
$65,000
Potential earnings:
$650,000 (normal), $812,500 (hard)
Number of players:
2-4

The Bogdan Problem
Setup cost:
$95,000
Potential earnings: $950,000 (normal), $1,187,500 (hard)
Number of players:
2-4

The Doomsday Scenario
Setup cost:
$120,000
Potential earnings:
$1,200,000 (normal), $1,500,000
Number of players:
2-4

Unless you were among The Doomsday Scenario’s earliest adopters, you’ll have spotted GTA Online’s flying Deluxos (the game’s answer to Back to the Future’s flying DeLoreans) zipping around the skies in Free Mode before tackling this heist. Still, the first time you glide through the clouds in your own silver brief is a watershed moment. 

The Doomsday Scenario pushes the envelope in GTA satire, stereotyping, and batshit craziness. As well as flying DMC-12s, this multi-mission quest to save the planet also boasts submarines, jetpacks, underwater cars and a secret military base tucked away inside Mount Chiliad. It’s hands down some of the most fun you’ll have in San Andreas.