Grand Theft Auto (GTA) is a series of action-adventure games created by David Jones and Mike Dailly

Later titles were developed under the oversight of brothers Dan and Sam Houser, Leslie Benzies and Aaron Garbut. It is primarily developed by British development house Rockstar North (formerly DMA Design), and published by its parent company, Rockstar Games.

The name of the series references the term "grand theft auto", used in the United States for motor vehicle theft.

Gameplay focuses on an open world where the player can complete missions to progress an overall story, as well as engage in various side activities.

Most of the gameplay revolves around driving and shooting, with occasional role-playing and stealth elements.

The series also has elements of the earlier beat 'em up games from the 16-bit era. The games in the Grand Theft Auto series are set in fictional locales modelled after real-life cities, at  various points in time from the early 1960s to the 2010s.

DMA Design began the series in 1997, with the release of the Grand Theft Auto.

As of 2020, the series consists of seven standalone titles and four expansion packs.

The third main title, Grand Theft Auto III, released in 2001, is considered a landmark game, as it brought the series to a three-dimensional (3D) setting and more immersive experience

The series has been critically acclaimed, with all the main 3D entries in the franchise frequently ranked among the greatest and best selling video games; it has shipped more than 350 million units, making it the fifth-best selling video game franchise.

In 2006, Grand Theft Auto was featured in a list of British design icons in the Great British Design Quest organised by the BBC and the Design Museum.

In 2013, The Telegraph ranked Grand Theft Auto among Britain's most successful exports.[6] The series has also been controversial for its adult nature and violent themes.