GTA V neighborhood’s “druggie hipster vibe” isn’t a good look for a Scottish town, could damage tourism.
Local officials from the Scottish city of Hawick have a bone to pick with Rockstar Games and Grand Theft Auto V. According to the representatives, using the name in the new game “could destroy” the town, misrepresenting it to the world and killing tourism.
In the real world, Hawick is a town known for its wool and their rugby team. In GTA V‘s city of Los Santos, there just happens to be an area also named Hawick: It’s a neighborhood known for its dilapidated appearance and “drug addict hipster vibe.”
Hawick is located south of Edinburgh, where Rockstar makes the Grand Theft Auto series. GTA games often include references to the studio Scottish heritage, including location names. Needless to say, Hawick councillor David Paterson is not amused by the shout-out:
“I am absolutely disgusted – there is a lot of history and a lot of good things happening in the town,” he said. “We have got a lot of good things planned for this coming year. It is going to destroy the good reputation of the town.”
Meanwhile, Scottish parliament member John Lamont has taken a more diplomatic approach, inviting Rockstar execs to meet and discuss the ramifications of their choice.
“I, like many other Hawick residents, was shocked to hear that the name of the town had been used in Grand Theft Auto V,” said Lamont. “Not only is it a game which includes violence, sex and drugs, but the game’s producers themselves describe the area of Hawick in the game as having a ‘drug addict hipster vibe’. While some may take the view that any publicity is good publicity, I am sure that many local residents will see this as an insensitive move from Rockstar North. The game undoubtedly portrays Hawick in a bad light and is likely to sell tens of millions of copies over the next year.”
Lamont added that, based on their use of the name, the team at Rockstar “clearly do not know Hawick well.”
Source: BBC South Scotland