Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is a Rockstar North developed GTA III era game, and so has references to storylines and characters from both Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. It is the only game so far set in the fictional state of San Andreas, consisting of three cities: Los Santos, San Fierro and Las Venturas, and includes vast expanses of countryside, forests, and a desert as well as a mountain. The game is set in 1992, and centers around the return of Carl Johnson (also known as CJ) to his gang (the Grove Street Families), and their subsequent return to power
Five years ago Carl Johnson escaped from the pressures of life in his hometown, Los Santos, San Andreas. Now, it's the early 90s, and he's got to get back home. His mother has been murdered, his family has fallen apart and his childhood friends are all heading towards disaster. On his return to the neighborhood, a couple of corrupt cops frame him for the homicide of a police officer. CJ is forced on a journey that takes him across the entire state of San Andreas, to save his family and take control of the streets.