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‘Grand Theft Auto’ Creators Will Reveal Details About Their New Game Next Week

September 22, 2017 2:46 PM
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Rockstar Games, the most secretive—and most successful—developer in the video game industry, plans to pull the curtain back a little further on its upcoming title Red Dead Redemption 2 next week.

The developer sent out a tweet Friday morning teasing an announcement on Sept. 28 at 11 a.m. ET. This will be the first time Rockstar has publicly discussed details of the game since it was announced in October of last year.

Red Dead Redemption 2 is a sequel to the 2010 western, which has the same open world setting that has made the developer's Grand Theft Auto series such a hit. It does not have an official release date beyond 2018. Most industry insiders expect it in the spring of next year, but Rockstar often delays games to ensure the quality is up to its standards. (The game was originally scheduled to release this fall.)

It's possible the developer will lock in a release date in next week's announcement, and it may well begin to discuss the online portion of the game, a topic it has previously avoided.

The online component of Grand Theft Auto V has helped the game become the best selling title in the industry's history by both revenue and units. GTA V has been on the market 49 months and has achieved 41 Top 10 chart appearances with The NPD Group. That's 16 more times than any other single title in the industry's history. Publisher Take-Two Interactive Software says fans have bought more than 80 million copies.

The online portion of GTA V lets players explore the game's many cities and partake in an ever-expanding number of cooperative and competitive challenges. Recurrent consumer spending (things like the purchase of virtual currency and in-game microtransactions) added more than $460 million to the company's bottom line in fiscal 2017—26% of the company's total net revenue. A sizable chunk of that came from GTA Online (as the online portion of the game is called).

Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick hasn't discussed details about how the company hopes bringing in comparable revenue with Red Dead Redemption 2. But in June, the company did say that it is as confident about Red Dead's prospects as it has become about GTA.

"We don’t have a model to pursue," he says. "We have said at Take-Two that we expect to have consumers become and remain happily engaged with our titles after they've launched. I have every reason to believe that's the case with Red Dead. The [online] form that it takes, I hope, would be endemic to the Red Dead universe and will feel authentic and connected and exciting in the context of what Rockstar wants to convey."


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