GTA Vice City Characters: Who Are These People?

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Grand Theft Auto is one of the longest-running game series developed by Rockstar. During its life span, the series received massive controversy for displaying mature content. Nonetheless, the series managed to hold ten gaming world records and received lots of rewards.

Game of the year (GTA Vice City), most successful entertainment lunch (GTA V), largest voice cast (GTA San Andreas), and most guest stars in a video game just to name a few.

The Grand Theft Auto series includes sixteen titles under its belt with a new addition currently under development. It is famous for its unrestricted, magnanimous, and complex designed worlds. These open worlds feature magnificent landscapes, live cities, tons of cars, weapons, and entertaining missions and activities.

Each game in the series features a story driven by various characters some of which are funny and crazy beyond imagination. GTA Vice City includes some of the most ludicrous characters in the series. However, it is hard to keep up with all the characters and what they do when you focus on playing the game to complete it.

Who are they? What is their goal in the game? How often do they appear?

Luckily, there is this guide to answer all of your questions.

In this article, we intend to give you a detailed list of all the GTA Vice City characters that took part in GTA Vice City.

The Protagonist

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Tommy Vercetti – voiced by Ray Liotta

Tommy Vercetti is one of the best and most memorable characters in the Grand Theft Auto series. The character is restricted to Vice City only, but he gets mentioned a couple of times in GTA San Andreas. Vercetti was voiced by the movie star Ray Liotta making him the first protagonist in the series that can speak.

Birth and Early Life

Thomas Vercetti, also known as Tom, Tommy, Mr. V, and the Harwood Butcher, was born in 1951in Liberty City. As a child, Tommy spent most of his time with his father at a printing shop, helping him clean the rollers. He was inspired by his dad and hoped to follow in his footsteps when he is older but ended up going the opposite way.

Sometime before the 70s, Tommy joined the Forelli Family Mafia, one of the three major crime syndicates in Liberty City and the strongest among them. Vercetti carried on working for the family and their leader Sonny, completing one job after another and climbing up the ranks. Tommy became a made man and grew immense power.

Sonny Forelli saw Tommy as a threat and decided to eliminate him. In 1971, Tommy was sent to Harwood district on Portland Island in Liber City to take out a rival gang.  Upon his arrival, Tommy was faced with eleven hitmen sent to kill him. However, Tommy survived the ambush and killed all eleven hitmen.

After that incident, Vercetti became known as The Harwood Butcher and was sentenced to fifteen years in prison.

Vice City Events

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In 1986, after spending a decade and a half in the slammer, Tommy was finally released. Fearing that Vercetti is too famous for Liberty City and ambitious to expand his drug empire, Sonny sent Tommy to Vice City.

Alongside Harry and Lee, Tommy arrives at the airport and meets Ken Rosenberg before heading to the docks for a drug deal with the Vance brothers. To everyone’s surprise, the deal turned out to be a set-up. Harry, Lee, and one of the Vance brothers were killed on the spot while Tommy managed to escape.

After arriving at Ken’s hideout, Tommy explains to Sonny that the deal was rigged and both the money and drugs were stolen. Following a heated conversation, Tommy convinces Sonny to let him handle the mess and find the money.

Tommy starts his journey by working for/with Ken and completing small-time jobs like terrorizing jurors and kicking off riots to take rivals out of business. During this stage, Tommy meets Lance, one of the dealers, seeking revenge. Vercetti begins to work for Juan Cortez, who starts looking for the gang that ambushed the initial deal.

Cortez finds out that Ricardo Diaz was responsible for the ambush. He Sends Tommy to work as his bodyguard during his deal with Cubans and gains his trust to take him down later.

Diaz’s deal gets ambushed by the Haitians, enemies of the Cubans, but they all get murdered by Tommy and Lance. Diaz gets impressed with the duo’s massive potential and hires them as handymen. Lance and Tommy are sent on a mission to eliminate gang members who stole money from Diaz, and jack a speed boat.

Eventually, Lance decides to confront Diaz and avenge his brother’s death, but he gets caught and held hostage. Tommy rescues Lance and gears up to kill Diaz and take over his criminal organization. The death of Diaz opens the doors for the winds of change as Tommy gets lots of opportunities to expand his drug empire and make a name for himself.

Vercetti starts taking extra precautions to protect himself and buys more properties. The latter requires completing a series of missions to fully acquire them. However, once attained, those properties become assets that generate money on daily basis. It includes:

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  • The Malibu Club
  • The Print Works
  • InetrGlobal Films Studios
  • The Cherry Popper Ice Cream Factory
  • The Vercetti Estate
  • The Sunshine Auto Dealership.

Tommy also accepts jobs from small criminal syndicates including Auntie Poulet (Haitians leader) and her enemy Umberto Robina (Cubans leader). And it doesn’t end there. Tommy expands his real estate and starts working with Avery Carrington and Phil Cassidy to keep the artillery business going.

Furthermore, Vercetti gets involved with a biker gang, Mr. Black’s hitman business, and the music industry by helping Kent Paul in managing Love Fist.

Things go haywire when Sonny decides to head down to Vice City and get his money back. Tommy plans to give Sonny fake cash printed at the Print Works, but Lance betrays Tommy and exposes his plan to Sonny. A massive gunfight stems and ends with Tommy killing both Lance and Sonny.


Tommy is represented as a mastermind with a short fuse. He gets irritated very quickly, and violence is his main solution for almost every problem. He is not afraid to kill and gets his hands dirty when things are not going as planned. Even though he has people working for him, he likes to put his plays into action in person. Nonetheless, Tommy still shows caring and affection towards a couple of characters to some extent. For example, Mercedes Cortez or Earnest Kelly when he got injured by the hitman.

Tommy is portrayed as an Italian-American with a well-built figure. He is tall, tanned with dark brown hair, brown eyes, and a five o’clock shadow. He wears a light blue/green Hawaiian shirt with palm trees, a golden watch, chain, blue jeans, and white sneakers. Still, there are other outfits available like a suit or a caddy outfit.

Tommy Vercetti has a lot of common characteristics with Tony Montana from Scarface. Both characters are drug lords who built their empires on large properties after returning from their exile. In addition, both characters wear similar outfits and are prone to violence.


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Sonny Forelli – voiced by Tom Sizemore

He is an Italian-American mobster and the Don of the Forelli family mafia in Liberty City.  Sonny became friends with Tommy Vercetti and hired him as his problem solver. However, Tommy made a name for himself in the city and gained power. Sonny became jealous and took Tommy’s rise as a threat, so he decided to take him out. In 1971, Sonny sent Tommy to Harwood to kill a gangster. Upon his arrival, Tommy found himself surrounded by eleven hitmen sent to kill him. Yet, Tommy survived and killed all eleven men, but he was arrested and convicted to fifteen years in prison.

1986 came around, and the Forelli Family remains the most powerful mafia in the city, with Sonny calling the shots. In the same year, Tommy is being released from prison thanks to Forelli’s connections. Sonny decided to kill two birds with one stone and send Tommy to Vice City to keep him away and establish a drug trading business at the same time.

Tommy alongside Harry and Lee meets Ken Rosenberg, a lawyer who works with Sonny, organized a drug deal with the help of Juan Cortez. After the deal went bust, Tommy called Sonny to explain the situation. After a long and heated talk, Sonny agreed to let Tommy handle it. Throughout the game, Sonny calls Tommy three times to check up on him and tells him not to be an unreliable person.

Eventually, Sonny had enough of Tommy ignoring the Forelli Mafia and not paying the money back, so he decided to fly to Vice City and get the money. He sent his men to collect the money from all the assets Vercetti owns, but Tommy is informed of the Forellis’ plan and takes out Sonny’s men.

Tommy decides to print fake cash to hand over to Sonny when he arrives at the Vercetti mansion. However, Lance betrayed Tommy and revealed his plan to Sonny. The results were a massive shootout that ended with Lance and Sonny dead.


Sonny is depicted as hungry for power, relentless, and a very tempered man. He tolerates nothing and snaps when things don’t go to plan. Sonny is willing to do anything to gain more power and money.

He attempted to kill Tommy out of paranoia and jealousy. Despite his greedy attitude and short temper, Sonny seems to be a strong, charismatic, and manipulative man. Under his control, the Forelli Family became the most powerful Mafia in Liberty City.

Sonny has a classic old-school villain appearance. He is an average size man with a bit more weight around his waist. In the game, he is seen wearing a dark blue coat with animal printed shit, white pants, and black shoes.

Main characters

Ken Rosenberg – voiced by William Fichtner

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Ken is a successful dirty lawyer who opened his law firm in Vice City. He began working for the Forelli Family by representing Giorgio Forelli. He also helped Sonny get into the drug trading business in Vice City. Rosenberg, with the help of Juan Cortez, sets up a deal between the Forelli Family (represented by Tommy, Harry, and Lee) and the Vance Crime Family (represented by Victor and Lance).

After the botched deal, Ken went to hide in his office and sent Tommy to do his dirty work. Later, Tommy stops working for Ken and becomes one of his clients. Whenever the cops arrest Tommy, Ken would get him out. Rosenberg sticks by Tommy’s side, helping him build his empire and kill Sonny. However, the duo soon split up due to Ken’s cocaine addiction.

Lance Vance – voiced by Philip Michael Thomas

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He is a cocaine dealer and one of the two main members of the Vance Crime Family. Lance flew his brother Vance to a drug deal with the Forelli Family, but the deal was botched, and Victor was killed. Tommy meets Lance after he silences the chef and starts working together. After discovering that Diaz was behind his brother’s death, Lance decides to face Diaz and avenge his brother. But his impulsive attitude gets him caught and tortured by Diaz’s men. Tommy saves Lance at the last moment. To redeem himself, Lance brings the big guns to Tommy to hunt down Diaz.

Soon their friendship slowly starts to decline. Lance begins complaining that Tommy is treating him as a toddler and is not giving him enough money or credit. Eventually, Lance betrays Tommy and switch side with the Forelli Family. Unfortunately, things escalated very quickly to a gunfight, and Lance was killed by Tommy.

Juan Cortez – voiced by Robert Davi

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Born in an unknown country in central America, Cortez is a retired colonel and has a daughter called Mercedes. He got heavily involved in the drug business and sealed his deals by sending his right-hand man Gonzalez. Cortez moved his business to Vice City and lived mainly on a yacht, which he used for his drug operations and loud parties.

Juan organized a drug deal between the Vance Crime Family and the Forelli Family, but the deal was botched. Many people died, and both the drugs and the money were stolen. Cortez meets Tommy at one of his parties after the deal and starts looking for the man behind this mess. The colonel hires Tommy to kill Gonzalez, steal military-grade weapons, and help him flee the country before the French government arrests him.

Mercedes Cortez – voiced by Fairuza Balk

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She is the daughter of Colonel Cortez. She moved with her father to Vice city, establishing themselves among the rich and powerful. She meets Tommy for the first time at one of her father’s parties. Mercedes introduces Tommy to several people at the party before asking him to give her a ride to the Pole Position club.

At first, she is presented as a potential lover to Tommy but things never moved outside a couple of teasing conversations. She is later used as bate to lure Tommy into a trap in Viceport during the Kaufman Cabs mission series. Eventually, she joins Tommy and starts working for his InterGlobal Films studios.

Avery Carrington – voiced by Burt Reynolds

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He is a real estate mogul from Texas and the owner of Shady Acres company based in Vice City. Avery is one of the elites who received an invite to colonel Cortez’s yacht parties, looking to expand his business. However, Avery received competition from a company called Spand Express. Ken introduces Avery to Tommy. He hires him to create riots in the opposing company yards to drive them out of business and kill a man to get his land.

Avery then sends Tommy to demolish a construction site across the street from his. It is probably the hardest mission in the Grand Theft Auto series events dubbed “Demolition Man”.

Avery asks for Tommy’s help to create warfare between the Haitians and the Cubans to lower property prices.

Riccardo Diaz – voiced by Luis Guzmán

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He was born in Colombia and moved to Vice City, where he established himself as a drug baron. He owns a massive mansion on Starfish Island with different foundations and protection rackets. Diaz gets informed of a drug deal happening between the Forelli Family and the Vance Crime Family. He decides to ambush the operation and steal both the money and the drugs.

His former employee Victor Vance and two of the Forelli Family Mafia members Harry and Lee were murdered while the others escaped. Later Diaz is seen at one of Cortez’s yacht parties.

Cortez informs Tommy that Diaz might be involved in the deal. He employs Lance and Tommy to protect Diaz and gain his trust before taking him down.

Seeing potential in the duo, Diaz hires Tommy and Lance on a series of drug-related missions, before Lance loses his patience and decides to take out Diaz. Unfortunately, he gets captured and tortured before being saved by Tommy. The duo gears up with heavy artillery and attacks Diaz’s mansion killing him and all his men in the process.

Phill Cassidy – voiced by Gary Busey

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He is an artillery maniac who provides the protagonist with guns that cannot be found in the local ammunition stores. Phill is presented as an army veteran who gets drunk while making explosives. Since he’s a gun expert, Tommy hires him as a shooter in a bank heist. After the robbery, Phill invites Tommy to work for him in exchange for an unlimited arms supply.

After killing and helping him take out the competition, Phill invites Tommy to his trailer to show him a Boomshine bomb he was working on. To demonstrate, Phill tried to detonate the bomb, but it did not work. Hoping to get it fixed, the bomb went off with Phill standing near it, blowing off his right arm in the process. Tommy took Phill to a surgeon to get him fixed. Later, the duo joined forces to start an arms business.

Mitch Baker – voiced by Lee Majors

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Known as Big Mitch, a war veteran with a Purple Heart and the leader of Vice City Bikers Club from the Greasy Chopper Bar. Mitch hires Tommy to do a series of missions, including starting riots in the streets, bike races, and retrieving a stolen motorcycle.

After finishing the jobs, Tommy earned Mitch’s respect and asks him to protect the Love Fist band Show.

Kent Paul – voiced by Danny Dyer

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He is an arrogant young fellow from Kent, England. Paul alleges that he is a criminal genius. Plus, he is well informed on what goes on the streets and has connections with the SWAT division. Paul meets Tommy for the first time at the Malibu Club. In their meeting, Paul gives Tommy a tip about a chef called Leo who knows about the botched drug.

They become kind of friends when Tommy helps Paul manage Love fist. In addition, Kent asks Tommy to give him a part in his adult films after purchasing the InterGlobal Studios.

Jezz Torrent – voiced by Kevin McKidd

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He is the lead singer of the Love Fist music band. He is first seen at Cortez’s yacht party among many other famous and powerful guests. The band later hires Tommy for a couple of missions featuring drugs, girls, and protection from psycho fans.

Candy Suxxx – voiced by Jenna Jameson

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Her real name is Candice Shand, and she is an adult film actress based in Vice City.  She works with Steve Scott every once in a while and gets hired as an escort for high authority personnel. Candy meets Tommy for the first time when he kills her agent and recruits her. Later, she starts working in the InterGlobal movie Studios alongside Mercedes Cortez.

Furthermore, she helps Tommy get destructive photos of a congressman to blackmail him and allow the adult movie industry to grow. Once more, Candy works alongside Tommy when they try to use a spotlight to advertise their latest movie.

Steve Scott – voiced by Dennis Hopper

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Also known as Stephen Scott is a film producer who works at the InterGlobal Film studios in Vice City. Tommy encounters Scott when he purchases the film studios. Next, Tommy helps Scott in hiring Candy and Mercedes for his film, distributing posters, and setting up a spotlight to advertise the movie. In addition, Scott is involved in helping Tommy take pictures of the congressmen.

Doris – voiced by Deborah Harry

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Doris is an old lady who works at the Kaufman Cabs taxi company. After Tommy acquires the company, Doris sends him on a series of missions to take out his opponents and turn the company into money generating asset.

Auntie Poulet – voiced by Youree Cleomili Harris

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She is an elderly woman and the leader of the Haitian gang. Tommy gives Auntie Poulet a visit in her shack in Little Haiti, where she gets him under the influence of a voodoo potion. Having no other choice but to comply, Tommy undertakes her tasks which include starting a war with the Cubans. After the potion finally wears off, Tommy does not seem to remember any of her missions.

Umberto Robina – voiced by Danny Trejo

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He is the leader of the Cuban gang and got way too deep in a turf war with the Haitians. Umberto meets Tommy through the phone when he calls Leo (the chef Tommy killed and took his phone). Robina admired Tommy’s courage and decided to meet him face to face at his father’s café. Once they meet, Tommy is tasked with a series of jobs involving taking out the Haitians and boat racing.

Mr. Black

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He is a mysterious character and gives orders through his cellphone only. He started working with Leo before Tommy killed him.  Still, he gave Tommy a series of missions, seemingly unaware of Leo’s death. Mr. Black’s missions are not required to finish the full story, but you must finish them to get 100% game completion.

Supporting characters

BJ Smith – voiced by Lawrence Taylor

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He is a former footballer with a minor role. He appears as the owner of Sunshine Auto Dealership, which Tommy purchases as a cover-up for his carjacking business.

Victor Vance – voiced by Armando Riesco

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The leader of the Vance Crime Family, brother of Lance, and former employee of Diaz. He gets killed in the initial botched drug deal with the Forelli Family.

Gonzalez – voiced by Jorge Pupo

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He is Colonel Cortez’s, right-hand man. However, he was caught stealing drugs from Cortez and selling it for a side profit. He later gets involved with Riccardo Diaz and sells him Cortez’s secrets. Supposedly, Gonzalez is the main suspect who informed Diaz about the Deal between the Forelli Family and the Vance Crime Family.

Mike – voiced by Robert Cihra

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A member of the Vercetti gang. Lance yells at him in the mission “Cop Land” for ruining an explosion attack. Later, Tommy makes a new plan and sends him to steal a squad car.

Cougar – voiced by Blayne Perry

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A member of Big Mitch biker club. Tommy must win a bike race against Cougar and his pals to earn their trust.

Hilary King – voiced by Charles Tucker

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He is an expert getaway driver with serious mental issues. Hillary joins Tommy in the bank heist after losing a street race to Tommy.

Alex Shrub – voiced by Chris Lucas

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He is a married congressman who will go very far to gain more power. Alex finds himself in a sticky situation when Tommy takes humiliating photos of him with Candy Suxxx.

Maude Hanson – voiced by Jane Gennaro

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She is the owner of the Cherry Popper Ice Cream factory. She appears in one cutscene when Tommy purchases the factory from her.

The psycho – voiced by Hunter Platin

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He hates the Love Fist band and tries to kill them. He claims that the band ruined his life, but he fails to get to them thanks to Tommy.

Earnest Kelly – voiced by George DiCenzo

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Kelly is a worker at the Print Works located on the borders of Little Havana and Little Haiti. He suggests to Tommy that he continues his money printing business but on a larger scale. Tommy agrees and develops a soft spot for Kelly because of his childhood dream of working in the Printshop.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Should I play Vice City before GTA III?

Answer: To experience the GTA series and enjoy it to the fullest, a player is recommended to play GTA Vice City First, then move to GTA San Andreas, to end with GTA III.

Question: How does GTA Vice City connect to the other games?

Answer: All three games are connected through characters. For instance, Ken Rosenberg mentions Tommy Vercetti in one of GTA San Andreas missions. Plus, Donald Love appears as an apprentice in GTA Vice City. however, he comes in as the main character in GTA III.

Question: Is Vice City better than Vice City Stories?

Answer: In regards to the originality of the story and the distinct characters, Vice City takes the win. However, Vice City Stories offers a bit more when it comes to gameplay mechanics and activities. It is expected considering that it came out after the original Vice City.

Final thoughts

Grand Theft Auto Vice City is the most controversial and beloved title in the series. It is a huge step-up from GTA III in regards to graphics, gameplay, and the open world itself. The game most certainly gained a cult fan base that vow GTA: Vice City is the best game. One of the most outstanding features of the game is the characters and the voice actors. As a GTA fan, I am glad Rockstar did not cheap out and hired great voices. Tommy Vercetti voiced by Ray Liotta would be more than magnificent to see again in GTA 6.

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