Rockstar parent company Take-Two has provided a brief status update about Grand Theft Auto V. During the company’s first quarter fiscal 2013 earnings call today, CEO Strauss Zelnick commented that Grand Theft Auto V is in “full development” and that Rockstar has made “substantial progress” on the game’s “vast, detailed open world setting.”
Beyond that, Zelnick was coy about Grand Theft Auto V’s release date, commenting “we can't talk about the credibility of a release date that we haven't announced” when asked about various reports about the game’s timing. When asked how often Take-Two communicates with Rockstar regarding the game’s status, Zelnick simply said he “wouldn't talk publicly about the way we communicate with our teams internally” and noted that Take-Two is “blessed” to be in business with Rockstar. “We have the best creative teams in the business across our company,” he added.
Grand Theft Auto V seemed to be the focus of many shareholders during the call’s Q&A session, but one investor also inquired about Agent, which, aside from aside from a few screenshots, hasn’t been heard from since it was originally announced in 2009. “We haven’t announced anything about the title yet” was Zelnick’s only comment.
Overall, Take-Two referred to the first quarter of its 2013 fiscal year as below expectations, largely pointing to lower than expected sales of Max Payne 3 (which has shipped three million units worldwide) and Spec Ops: The Line. The company earned $226.1 million for the quarter -- down $108.3 million compared to the same quarter last year -- and reported a $110.8 million loss, more than $100 million over last year’s first quarter loss of $8.6 million. “Consumers at this stage in the hardware cycle are more selective than ever,” Zelnick said. “Our teams are already trying to do groundbreaking work. Sometimes we succeed, sometimes we succeed mightily. Occasionally we are disappointed. We’d like that to be even less occasionally.”
Take-Two is investing heavily in digitally-delivered content, including mobile games and downloads. 14% of Take-Two revenue this quarter came from downloaded content, including Civilization V’s recent Gods and Kings expansion and Max Payne Mobile. A free multiplayer add-on for Max Payne 3 was announced, as well as online launches including an open beta for NBA 2K13 in China, Comedy Central’s Indecision Game for mobile and NBA 2K All Stars for the GREE platform. Catalog sales were up 50% compared to last year, including successes like Grand Theft Auto III 10th Anniversary Edition and Red Dead Redemption.
Take-Two expects this fiscal year “to be one of the best years in Take-Two's history,” projecting between $1.7 and $1.8 billion. 55% of that total is expected to come from Rockstar, with the remaining 45% coming from 2K titles. 2K’s upcoming release slate includes Borderlands 2 in September, followed by NBA 2K13 and XCOM: Enemy Unknown in October. First-person shooter XCOM is scheduled for fiscal 2014 (meaning it will arrive between April 2013 and March 2014) and BioShock Infinite is scheduled for February 2013. Take-Two also hinted at additional titles that have yet to be announced.
Take-Two noted that Borderlands 2 has some of the highest pre-order numbers in the company’s history, behind only Grand Theft Auto IV and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. "Consumer anticipation is phenomenal," chief operating officer Karl Slatoff commented.
Source : ign[dot]com