Success And Failure In GTA Online: Import/Export

The most divisive update yet is making some players rich, while others go broke

The most recent major update for GTA Online, and the last one for the year, has a lot of players up in arms. Import/Export pushed the game even further down the road of being a grind fest, while also introducing a potentially lucrative way of making money that most players just haven’t figured out yet.

Import/Export can really be best described as a mixed bag. There’s a lot to love, and a lot to… well, dislike. The DLC added massive 60 slot executive garages which can be tricked out with exclusive auto-shops for all your customization needs without having to leave the garage. It added a host of special vehicles as well, including amphibious buggies, post-apocalyptic campers and semis with massive wedges welded to their front portions.

The update also brought GTA back to its roots, putting the stealing and selling of cars back into the spotlight. Players are tasked with boosting special vehicles and getting them back to their vehicle warehouses, from where they can respray, mod and then sell the vehicles on the black market. In theory, it’s a simple but entertaining way of gaining cash that validates the name “Grand Theft Auto”.

In practice? Well, it’s still all that, but it has a steep learning curve in order to nail an efficient technique and also has a high entry investment. Seeing as new players need to dish out more than two and a half million to even access the new content, and add to that multi-million dollar special vehicles and garages, and you’ll have people complaining about high prices.

We’ve discussed in-depth why prices in GTA Online must be relatively high before, however the steep price hikes of Import/Export go beyond even that. Nonetheless, it’s not like the game doesn’t give you the tools needed to make all that cash – you just need to be smart about it.

Luck also helps – there are, unfortunately, many pitfalls built into Import/Export that turn missions into money-sinks, decreasing your profits through bothersome game mechanics. Among other things, the update changed NPC AI to make the non-player drivers you encounter much more erratic. This causes more collisions, meaning you’ll need to pay to repair your car before selling it.

Unless you use a Cargobob. Thing is, Import/Export is full of pitfalls like we said, however they all have simple solutions that simply need to be discovered. Once the player gets a hang of these, – such as a nifty method to get around the timer – the cash will start flowing quickly.

While importing cars is risky and volatile business for inexperienced players, it actually becomes a better source of income than running crates once the player has learned the ropes. It’s easy to fall into a loop of poor runs and bad luck, which make you rage at “the man” – in this case, Rockstar.

Some players just can’t seem to catch a break. They blow several million on gaining access to the import missions, only to roll poor car after poor car, getting rammed constantly, having the car shot to bits before reaching the warehouse and then selling for only a minuscule profit at the end of it all. When all you have to show for hours worth of gameplay is pocket change, damn right you’re going to be angry.

However, unfortunately that anger is often misguided. There is a genuinely effective way of making cash in this update. For example, playing with a buddy is an instant boost. You’ll be able to deliver more than one vehicle at a time, increasing efficiency, and you’ll also have better chances when sourcing vehicles.

Many players also have a tendency to overlook the Collections feature. This rewards you for grabbing various cars on a shopping list of stolen vehicles and delivering them to a single buyer with a large bonus.

Even soloing the missions can be profitable if done right. Make sure you bring the cargobob for all deliveries and use it in sourcing missions too. Using the method we linked to above, you can ditch any non high-end sources, allowing you to fill up your warehouse with truly valuable cargo, saving you a lot of time.

Many fans fall into the trap of looking at the high prices, and not looking past their initial bad experiences when it comes to the actual missions. Import/Export isn’t half as unforgiving as it is made out to be, however, there is some truth to the complaints.

This really is the first DLC where GTA Online’s prices can genuinely be called out of hand. Sure, the Luxor Deluxe and yachts were more expensive than this, however the former is a pointless status symbol with no benefits, while the latter feels worth the cash without walling off major gameplay mechanics.

The reason so many players are upset with Import/Export is because it walls of the biggest and main mechanic of the DLC behind massive prices, and then does the same thing with all the optional content too. We saw a similar effect back when Further Adventures in Finance and Felony was added, with players bothered by the high initial investment required.

Well, Import/Export hiked the investment even higher, while making it initially seem daunting to turn a profit, even though it isn’t. This illusion has elicited the same kind of reaction, but with greater fervor. Players feel wronged and forced into purchasing microtransactions just to enjoy the game, even though this isn’t the case.

Import/Export, like Finance and Felony, takes a lot upfront and doesn’t make it clear how to turn a profit quickly. With the prevailing view among players being that Rockstar is far too pushy when it comes to Shark Cards, many have simply taken the horror stories about the latest GTA Online update at face value.

In the end, there are issues with Import/Export – quite a few. However, the DLC isn’t half as bad as everyone makes it out to be – it’s just an easy money-sink for unsuspecting players. Search long enough, you’ll find as many comments and posts speaking about success stories in GTA Online since the new update launched as rants.

Grab a crew, grab a cargobob, and get cracking. You’ll make back your investment, and turn a decent profit, in no time. Keep in mind that there is a 50% bonus on export payouts today and tomorrow as a Christmas present, so make sure to cash in on those while you can.

And even if things don’t turn out well, even if your sources vehicles are getting banged up, there is always the businesses from Bikers and the crates from Finance and Felony to fund your exploits in GTA Online. Rockstar has, over the years, filled the game with methods to make cash. Use them.

Have you been successful in Import/Export, or are you having a hard time making profits in GTA Online since the new DLC released?


What do you think? Sound off below!

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