Grand Theft Auto IV is no longer on Steam. For over a decade, Rockstar has been supporting the game’s life. The reason for the game’s sales to fizzle isn’t because of a copyright issue, Rockstar isn’t going to let that happen, but rather because of a technical problem. They ran out of game keys.
As it turns out, Grand Theft Auto IV was made with ties to Games for Windows – Live, an official service that allowed Microsoft-branded PC games to connect to their live service. This included getting a unique gamertag and playing online.
GTA IV was originally released for Windows PC and took part in the program. Things turned sour when Microsoft decided to shutter the service back in 2014, leaving a handful of games out of luck and with features they couldn’t easily fix.
A Rockstar spokesperson told Polygon the issue is all about being unable to generate any more keys and that they’re looking into how they can remedy the situation and get it back on sale.
Grand Theft Auto IV was originally created for the Games For Windows Live platform. With Microsoft no longer supporting Games For Windows Live, it is no longer possible to generate the additional keys needed to continue selling the current version of the game. We are looking at other options for distributing GTAIV for PC and will share more information as soon as we can.
The product page is still up and now starts with a note saying the game isn’t unplayable for those who already have it, you just need to create an account through Xbox and login to that account.