April 19th, 2008
At a recent shareholder meeting, Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick (pictured) said he has seen some of the reviews for Grand Theft Auto IV ahead of their publication:
We’ve already received numerous [GTA IV] reviews, and to a one, they are perfect scores. My mom couldn’t write better reviews…
This is fairly unsurprising news, but the next ten days is set to go by awful slowly for a few million gamers around the world - especially once the embargos lift and we have to start reading the in-depth, glowing reports.
April 16th, 2008
Industry analysts and sources close to Take-Two Interactive have told Variety they expect Grand Theft Auto IV to gross over $400 million in its first week on sale.
Blockbuster CEO Jim Keyes has also said he expects GTA IV to provide two times the volume of sales of Halo 3, while GameStop VP of merchandise Bob McKenzie says the game will fall short of the mark set by Bungie and Microsoft.
November 9th, 2007
Rockstar have settled the class action suit they were facing over the Hot Coffee mod. The result is that if you can prove you bought the game before July 20th 2005, Rockstar owes you US$35 or a new copy of the game. Rockstar and Take-Two estimates that this will cost them $1.025 million. Interestingly, they believe that had they kept going they could have won the trial, as Ben Feder, Chief Executive Officer of Take-Two said:
“If the case had continued, we believe the court would have agreed that Take-Two was not liable for consumers acting independently to modify their games with third-party hardware and software to access normally inaccessible content. Nonetheless, we believe it is in the best interest of the Company to avoid protracted and costly litigation to prove our case and to finally put this matter behind us.”
Reminds me of a spoiled child, but what’s a few hundred thousand in legal fees to a million in payouts? Yep, makes absolutely no sense.
August 11th, 2007
2K have announced both PC and Xbox 360 versions of BioShock have gone to gold master, and are on track for their announced release dates - North America on August 21, and later in Europe on August 24.
Take-Two are clearly as excited about BioShock as the general public. Since their 2005 acquisition, Irrational have received plenty of nurturing - almost doubling in size. To further stamp their ownership on the development studio, 2K have renamed Irrational to 2K Boston and 2K Australia.
Assuring the public that future innovation will not be compromised following the new arrangements, Ken Levine, President and Creative Director of 2K Boston says, “We’re proud to be part of the 2K Games family and enjoy the new opportunities and artistic freedoms this strengthened relationship provides.”
via Press Release
August 3rd, 2007
Publishers Take Two have announced that Grand Theft Auto IV will be pushed back from its planned October 12 release, and will now hit shelves some time during the second fiscal quarter of 2008.
Straus Zelnick, chairman of Take Two, had the final say in the decision, which arose from “almost strictly technological problems… not problems, but challenges.” The company viewed the most recent build yesterday, but made their verdict today to allow additional development time.
You can imagine the frustration felt by Saints Row 2 developers Volition, who pushed back their release date to avoid competition with GTA IV.
Despite the bad news, CEO Ben Freder reassured the public that:
We are in sound financial condition and have a great product line-up. Grand Theft Auto IV is going to be the defining next generation videogame action adventure.
News of the delay of GTA IV announced at the close of NASDAQ trading, precipitated an 18% drop in share prices during the after-hours session of trading. A further drop tomorrow is not unlikely.
via Take Two and Eurogamer