10 Things You Didn't Know about GTA San Andreas

things you didn't know about gta san andreas

Released in 2004, Grand Theft Auto San Andreas is one of the most successful games of all time. It also boasts a huge world that deep dives into the underbelly of gangs, crime and west coast culture.

As a GTA game with the highest number of missions, there's a ton of unique features, unbelievable amounts of freedom in an open world and a lot of content which got cut from game before it's release. 

Here are 10 things you probably didn't know about GTA San Andreas

1. Shawn Fonteno San Andreas 

Did you know the voice actor of Franklin Clinton in GTA 5 has a cameo in San Andreas. It's a lesser fact that in addition to his role as Franklin, Shawn Fonteno also voices a member of the Grove Street Families gang in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Since he didn't use his legal name, players will have trouble finding his actual name in the game's credits, because Fonteno instead chose to go by his rapper name Solo.

There's yet another connection. Shawn Fonteno is the real-life cousin of Young Maylay, who is the voice actor of CJ in San Andreas. Talk about a coincidence.

2. Grove Street Families original name

At first, the Grove Street Families were going to be called the Orange Grove Families, abbreviated OGF. The gang's street title evidently inspired by the Grape Street crips, LA. However midway through development it was renamed. 

This is seen in various video game magazines where the gang is referred to Orange Grove Families or OGF during previews. Also, Grove Street itself is known as Orange Grove.

In the game, there is still original dialogue and graffiti which wasn't removed. For instance, players can come across "OGF" graffiti in and around Los Santos.

When CJ is faced with rival gang members, he will sometimes use phrases like "OGF" and "Orange Grove Families". In addition, CJ is able to have a tattoo on his upper back related to the Orange Grove Families. 

3. Who is officer tenpenny based on?

Every "hero" needs a villain, and officer Frank Tenpenny gained a lot of notoriety due to his criminal ambitions in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Tenpenny is a thug with a badge as well as the corrupt commander of the C.R.A.S.H. unit, which stands for Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums. Tenpenny is clearly inspired by Rafael Pérez, a real-life police officer who was involved in numerous crimes and corruption during the 90s.

4. San Fierro earthquake 

Players exploring the city of San Fierro in GTA San Andreas will come across numerous destroyed buildings, a collapsing motorway, and numerous other damaged infrastructure that indicate the city is still rebuilding after a devastating earthquake.

There are other obvious indicators as well, including a radio news report explicitly mentioning that there was an earthquake not too long ago. Furthermore, it's also mentioned in the game's manual. 

5. First Time actor

 CJ's underdog to success story wouldn't have been as impressive without Cj's voice actor Christopher Bellard better known as Young Maylay, pouring all his heart into his role.

However even more impressive is the fact that he had no prior experience before lending his voice to Carl Johnson. Plus him getting the role was purely coincidental, thanks to the game's co producer DJ Pooh, who put his protégé on during a business meeting with executives. 

While DJ Pooh was in a meeting with executives, he called up Maylay and put his protégé on speakerphone without him knowing. 

6. 50 Cent Allegedly Was Offered The Role Of CJ

According to several reports, rapper 50 Cent received an opportunity to play CJ in San Andreas. He reportedly declined it, because he planned to play himself in the game if he were to star in it.

Rockstar has never responded to questions about whether or not this is accurate. Although if 50 Cent had voiced CJ in San Andreas, the game would have felt very different, that much is certain.

7. GTA San Andreas Menace 2 Society

One of the reasons why San Andreas is so authentic is because of it's homage to gangster films from the 90s, most notably hood movies.  Menace 2 Society was a clear and obvious influence for San Andreas, right down to some specific details.

There is a Grove Street Families member who resembles Odog and a Ballas member who resembles the carjacker who jacked Caine and his cousin.

There's also an entire section of Ganton which looks like the houses in Caine's neighbourhood of watts. While the memorable line from Menace  "I feel sorry for your mother" is parodied in the beginning of the game when Ryder tries to rob the pizza joint. 

And lastly three actors from the movie voice characters in the game. Samuel L. Jackson officer Tenpenny, Clifton Powell as Big Smoke and Mc Eiht as Ryder. 

8. The Game was Briefly certified as Adults only

San Andreas was the only GTA game certified as Adults only for a brief while. It all began in 2005 when a disabled s** minigame dubbed hot coffee was found in the game's files and enabled by hacking tool. 

By July the game had been handed it's infamous AO rating, often seen as a commercial death sentence. Take2 recalled the current version to remove the minigame entirely and by the end of the year, San Andreas was recertified back to mature. 

9. Rockstar mocking other video games

Grand Theft Auto is widely regarded as the gold standard for open-world games that allow you to dream of creating a criminal empire.

Other games have attempted to replicate the authenticity, carnage, and pure enjoyment that makes Grand Theft Auto so popular, and Rockstar had no issue making fun of it's competitors.

For instance in GTA San Andreas, in one of the missions a npc can be seen playing a video game while insulting the protagonist of Driver, Tanner. While in San Fierro, tombstones can seen with the words "rip opposition." 

10. Best selling Playstation 2 game

GTA San Andreas is the best selling ps2 game of all time with a whooping 17.33 million copies sold in it's lifetime. This is a huge number when you realize that second best game in the series during that time, GTA Vice City sold half that number.

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