Lecter was introduced in the 1981 thriller novel Red Dragon as a forensic psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer. The novel and its sequel, The Silence of the Lambs, feature Lecter as one of the primary antagonists after the two serial killers in both novels. In the third novel, Hannibal, Lecter becomes a protagonist. His role as the antihero occurs in the fourth novel, Hannibal Rising, which explores his childhood and development into a serial killer.
GTA III, VC, LCS
The character of Donald Love is possibly inspired by Lecter, Love like Lecter is a cannibal and in the mission, Cam-Pain eats human ribs and says that human flesh is like chicken, but more sentient. In GTA III and GTA LCS he is said to throw morgue parties, and asks Toni to bring him the bodies of Avery Carrington and Ned Burner to eat. Donald Love's appearance in GTA LCS bears some resemblance to Lecter.
GTA SA contains a reference to Hannibal through a liquor store named "Hannibal Liquor", which is an obvious reference to Hannibal and his name.