A modder by the handle “t0st” has discovered a way to improve the excruciatingly long load times in GTA Online by up to 70% on PC. Better yet is that Rockstar will be utilizing t0st's findings in an official upcoming patch, and has paid the modder $10,000 for their efforts.
The $10,000 reward is part of Rockstar's Bug Bounty program, which is typically reserved for security-related issues, but the company made an exception in this case due to the significance of the fix. Rockstar publicly said it “would like to thank” t0st for their efforts with resolving the issue.
As part of t0st's description of the issues, they stated that it shouldn't take Rockstar “more than a day for a single dev to solve.” According to t0st, they were inspired to “get to the bottom of” why the load times were still so long, even seven years after launch. “I was shocked to discover that it still loads just as slow as the day it was released seven years ago,” said t0st.
The modder summed up the issue as “a single thread CPU bottleneck while starting up GTA Online,” causing the notoriously long load times. And they also added that they “have no idea how Rockstar has missed it all these years,” in regards to the glaring issue.
While the modder had discovered the fix back in February, Rockstar recently acknowledged t0st's efforts and recently told PC Gamer “After a thorough investigation, we can confirm that player t0st did, in fact, reveal an aspect of the game code related to load times for the PC version of GTA Online that could be improved.”
“As a result of these investigations, we have made some changes that will be implemented in a forthcoming title update.”
It's unknown when Rockstar will implement the patch, but GTA Online players can rest easy knowing the game will soon load faster (at least on PC). It's currently unclear if the patch will be implemented across console versions as well, as Rockstar only made mention of the PC edition.