"Grand Theft Auto" Saves Xbox and PlayStation

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Let's not bury the video-game industry just yet.

Take-Two Interactive's (NASDAQ: TTWO  ) Grand Theft Auto V hit the ground running with its Tuesday debut. The company announced the next day that it had sold $800 million worth of the title in its first 24 hours of availability.

Yes, that's huge. It's also the best news that Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT  ) and Sony (NYSE: SNE  ) have heard, and not just because the game is available exclusively for the Xbox 360 and PS3. Take-Two's record-setting performance shows that diehard gamers are still there. They just needed a tentpole release to awaken them from their slumber. 

When Take-Two circled September as its release for Grand Theft Auto V, it seemed dangerously close to November's debut of Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PS4. Would gamers be too busy saving their money for the new systems that start at $400? Would players ready to upgrade to the new consoles in two months still want to buy a game for the old platforms? Microsoft and Sony are moving to new chip architectures with the new systems in November, so older games won't be organically compatible. 

Well, we know that gamers chose to play now.

Source: Rockstar Games.

The only fear now -- if you happen to be Microsoft or Sony -- is if roughly millions of gamers are buying the game now because they have no intention of upgrading to the new systems right away. 

There may be an inevitable shakeout, especially after Nintendo's (NASDAQOTH: NTDOY  ) recent move to slash prices of its slow-selling Wii U system ahead of November's launch of rival platforms. Will gamers hold off on buying new systems until they see whether there are price cuts on the way next year?

They probably won't wait, and not just because we're already seeing the launch-day pre-orders sell out at GameStop and Best Buy is sold out of its online pre-orders, but it should be available at stores in limited quantities at the time of launch. We don't know whether weak supply is what's giving the appearance of strong demand, but it's hard to bet against the industry -- even after years of declining sales -- after digesting Take-Two's blowout debut of Grand Theft Auto V.

The industry couldn't have timed its new generation any better. The economy's showing signs of life, and Take-Two's five-year lull between flagship Grand Theft Auto numbered releases only appears to have made audiences hungrier. 

Play on.

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Read/Post Comments (9) | Recommend This Article (2)

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  • Report this Comment On September 21, 2013, at 4:07 PM, prginww wrote:

    Who the heck! needs a PS4 or XBOX ONE when you have GTA 5? I wont stop playing GTA 5 for at least 3 or 4 years! this game is amazing!

    GTA SA, came out roughly 9 years ago or so, and people are still playing it as if it came out yesterday. Goes to show, as long as you have an amazing game at hand, there is no need to seek for a new gaming console.

  • Report this Comment On September 21, 2013, at 4:49 PM, prginww wrote:

    "Let's not bury the video-game industry just yet."

    Who in the world writes these articles? Are they brain dead? The video game industry already makes more money than the Hollywood industry so what about this industry is not doing well? Do they just see compared to last year they are not doing as well? That is probably because most gamers know new consoles are coming out.

    Get someone to write these articles that actually has played a video game once in their life and is not some 50+ year old curmudgeon that thinks games are not doing as well as the Pac Man days.

  • Report this Comment On September 21, 2013, at 5:51 PM, prginww wrote:

    ...I still don't get what the whole gloom and doom about consoles is. Consoles are doing pretty damn well, hell PC gaming is doing pretty damn well for itself as well. Just because some people have iphones and download a few apps for it doesn't mean they're giving up gaming on a console or PC for their Iphone. Hell, I hear that Nintendo is going to go under any day now despite the fact the 3DS is selling like hotcakes.

  • Report this Comment On September 21, 2013, at 6:43 PM, prginww wrote:

    They are right, I have no intention of buying the new system right away. At least not until they fix all the regular expected bugs of a new system and they include the 360 and original xbox game reading package. Besides I cant afford $500 for a system plus $60 for online subscription and another $70 for my first game that I will most likely beat and get board of after a week.

  • Report this Comment On September 21, 2013, at 6:44 PM, prginww wrote:

    I swear wasn't there a thumbs up and thumbs down for the comments at one point on this website?

  • Report this Comment On September 22, 2013, at 12:35 AM, prginww wrote:

    That's complete B.S How many games has call of duty sold? Not to mention Madden games. I think Xbox would get by just fine without GTA 5

  • Report this Comment On September 22, 2013, at 6:39 AM, prginww wrote:

    PC is dying, upgrades are expensive? You can keep a gaming pc up to date for the cost of a xbox live yearly subscription. MMO is the future of gaming, massive online games, where you get free community play. If you are betting on the consoles to close the doors on PC you are mistaken. The xbox one and Sony ps4 are only 1.6 ghz 8 cores. You can buy a better pc for less money than a new system. The PC will not be going away because MMO is saving the pc world in a big way.

  • Report this Comment On September 22, 2013, at 8:22 AM, prginww wrote:

    MMO is the strength of Gaming right now and even WOW has gone F2P. Anyone that thinks gaming consoles and tablets will steal the thunder of the PC they are wrong. The processor in the new game systems are still years behind the graphics and game play of the PC. The MODs that come out keep a game like GTA IV relevant for years and make the game 10X better than the original, which is something game consoles can't do.

  • Report this Comment On September 23, 2013, at 3:10 AM, prginww wrote:

    That's a common claim - the latest generation consoles don't keep up with the latest PCs.

    1) PS4 and Xbox One use 8 cores. What does your PC use? Games make heavy use of multiple cores.

    2) PS4 has very fast memory, which also improves CPU speed significantly. PCs don't use such fast memory. In addition, both consoles have a lot of memory and the developers can rely on it to be exclusively there for their games.

    3) Consoles are well known and optimizations for them is much more likely than for the many variations of PC systems.

    4) Consoles don't run heavy operating systems which run games as additional processes to all the other applications. On a console, all resources are available for the game, without interruption.

    I bet we'll see some exclusive titles on the PS4 next year or the year after that won't be matched by any PC game graphics. This certainly will change with time, but still, most games will look almost alike for quite a while to come. On the PC side, you have to pay for all your hardware upgrades in the meantime, where the console owner places a decent All-In-One into his living room and keeps it a few years (without noise and bulky case).

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