The lights are on
On today's first quarter 2014 earnings call, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick was asked about sales projections for Grand Theft Auto V. While the company isn't talking about pre-order volume and anticipated volume, they did share some historical data.
Grand Theft Auto IV sold 11 million units in its first month. From release through today, Rockstar has moved for 25 million copies of the most recent entry in its open-world series. Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick pointed out that since the release of Grand Theft Auto IV, the current-generation console install base has increased three-fold. Zelnick was careful to indicate that this doesn't translate into a straight-line increase, though the intent in sharing that information seemed to be to hint at an expected increase in early sales.
Given that Take-Two is anticipating approximately 60 percent of its revenue to come from Rockstar (Grand Theft Auto V and back catalog) and the remainder to come from 2K (Bioshock Infinite, Borderlands 2 content, The Bureau, WWE 2K14, NBA 2K14), it's pretty clear what's driving the high expectations for fiscal year 2014.
Our TakeGrand Theft Auto V is the title that's going to make Take-Two's fiscal year come together. With the historical numbers and the expectation on revenue contributions, Rockstar is clearly the cash cow. That's not to diminish the great games coming out of 2K Games and 2K Sports. It's just that hard to compete with Grand Theft Auto.
Email the author Mike Futter, or follow on Google+, Twitter, and Game Informer.