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Toni Antonio Cipriani

ARTICLE: Why is Rockstar Games missing X'Mas

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Toni Antonio Cipriani

Well, this is an article I have written for my blog, and I thought I should share it with you guys, since it's Rockstar Games and GTAIV related. Finally, this is the correct forum to post this in. Please delete my old topic in Writer's Discussion, mod.

 

 

Why? Why is Rockstar Games missing Christmas? Why doesn’t the sacred Grand Theft Auto IV see the light of day? Like I said before in this article, many games are going to be released this Christmas. Yet, gamers are not rejoicing. Instead, they are complaining. Maybe this time, Rockstar Games are in luck.

 

“So many games, so little time. We want to play these games, they’re all great, but we don’t have the money!” These are what some gamers are saying. The sight of reviews of so many great games just in a day, nothing stands out. Crysis now looks unappealling beside Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Hellgate: London, Need for Speed: ProStreet and Gears of War.

 

Coming back to the topic, why is Rockstar Games missing X’mas? Ok, maybe some will argue that they’re not missing Christmas, after all, they have Manhunt 2. No, we’re not talking about that Halloween game. We’re talking about their Christmas game, Grand Theft Auto IV.

 

Sure enough, many of us already know about how Grand Theft Auto IV missed it’s October 16’s release date and got pushed back all the way to Take 2 Interactive’s second quarter of fiscal 2008, which in other words is the period between February and April.

 

The reason of the delay was because “certain elements of development proved to be more time-intensive than expected, especially given the commitment for a simultaneous release on two very different platforms.” Take 2 Interctive also said that “perfecting the game is vital and I can assure everyone it will be worth the wait.” and that they “owe it to the game’s millions of fans, to our dedicated development team, and to our shareholders to make sure that Grand Theft Auto IV is a groundbreaking gaming experience that takes maximum advantage of next generation technology.”

 

However, many of the game’s fans, me included, thinks otherwise. Rumours floated around the internet about problems cropping up in the PlayStation 3 version and about Rockstar Games abandoning the project. More recently, Take 2 Interactive’s chairman, Strauss Zelnick, even said that a release date for Grand Theft Auto IV cannot be confirmed at the point of time.

 

Just what is the problem here? Perhaps Rockstar Games really missed the initial release date for Grand Theft Auto IV because of certain challenges and problems in development, but so far, I have seen that this release date is indeed good for both Grand Theft Auto fans and Rockstar Games itself.

 

Well, why do I say so? The delay is good for fans, because they have more time to save up for a next-generation console, and for Rockstar Games, it is good because they missed Christmas. Well, why is it a good thing then? As you can see, many games are being released this christmas, and by many games, I mean lots of games.

 

The problem is, the game publishing and developing companies won’t be able to earn much from games during this season either, so it’s a good thing Rockstar Games mangaged to skip that “money-burning frenzy” period of Christmas. Plus, if Grand Theft Auto IV is released in the period of February to April 2008, where not many games will be released, they can make more cash and at the same time kick Halo 3 out of the first place to be the “King of the Hill”.

 

In other words, by delaying Grand Theft Auto IV, Rockstar Games will be killing three peds with one bullet (pun intended). They will be able to make more money, implement more features and build up the Grand Theft Auto IV hype. No matter what you guys might think of the delay, I really think it’s a smart strategic move by Rockstar Games, really.

 

So far, Rockstar Games has made many great games and I think we must really compliment them for the hard work they have put in into the games they have made so far, such as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, The Warriors, Midnight Club 3: DUB Editon and most recently Manhunt 2. We must really all learn that the delay of Grand Theft Auto IV is all for the benefit of Rockstar Games and the Grand Theft Auto franchise itself, and we should not be too depressed.

 

Learn to love Rockstar Games, Grand Theft Auto, and the great games they make! Of course, Rockstar Games have missed Christmas, and some of us are not too happy. Cheer up! There are lots of other games you can play this holiday season. In fact, there’s so many of them you will have your hands filled and your pockets empty. Finally, we have come to the end of this article. As usual, give us your comments on what you think!

 

Click Here to view Article Source and to comment

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Shylock

You can only polish a turd so much before you realize that at the end of the day, it's still a piece of sh*t.

 

That being said. Your economic break down of this fails to realize that the holiday season is the bread and butter of the ENTIRE RETAIL industry. More money is spent between Black Friday and Xmas eve then any other time of the year. So them "planning" to avoid this season isn't really a smart strategic move, it's more of a "we failed to meet our goals" move. Black Friday is called that for one reason only, because it is when retail stores go from being in the red (down profit) to being in the black (making profit).

 

Another thing worth mentioning is that Grand Theft Auto has a fan base. A huge one. And to think for one minute that delaying the game until a season where people have "more money" is pretty silly. No matter when they release it they will have shortages and be pressed to turn out enough games to meet demand.

 

So in fact, delaying the game wasn't a "strategic" move. They had too. No smart economist or marketing associate intentionally delays something to "avoid the Christmas season." Now if you can't comprehend anything I just said...and want to see charts and graphs with pretty lines and different colours drawn on them, let me know. But the only people who could possibly think your argument presents sound reasoning on rockstars behalf are the sheep of society. And they generally are the people who don't know any better.

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Toni Antonio Cipriani

 

You can only polish a turd so much before you realize that at the end of the day, it's still a piece of sh*t.

 

That being said.  Your economic break down of this fails to realize that the holiday season is the bread and butter of the ENTIRE RETAIL industry.  More money is spent between Black Friday and Xmas eve then any other time of the year.  So them "planning" to avoid this season isn't really a smart strategic move, it's more of a "we failed to meet our goals" move.  Black Friday is called that for one reason only, because it is when retail stores go from being in the red (down profit) to being in the black (making profit).

 

Another thing worth mentioning is that Grand Theft Auto has a fan base.  A huge one.  And to think for one minute that delaying the game until a season where people have "more money" is pretty silly.  No matter when they release it they will have shortages and be pressed to turn out enough games to meet demand. 

 

So in fact, delaying the game wasn't a "strategic" move.  They had too.  No smart economist or marketing associate intentionally delays something to "avoid the Christmas season."  Now if you can't comprehend anything I just said...and want to see charts and graphs with pretty lines and different colours drawn on them, let me know.  But the only people who could possibly think your argument presents sound reasoning on rockstars behalf are the sheep of society.  And they generally are the people who don't know any better.

No, from a gamer's point of view, it's a smart move. Most people will only buy a few games this season, and there are at least 100 AAA titles out there (like Crysis, BioShock, Manhunt 2, Juiced 2, Halo 3, Quake Wars, Hellgate: London, Call of Duty 4, etc.). Most casual gamers might only buy one (or two) AAA titles. So, the "pie" is being shared between so many games. Look at it, let's say there are 10 million people that decides to purchase video games for Christmas in this whole world, and each of them only purchases 4 games each and a console. Most probably, 35% will not purchase GTA IV if it comes out at that time because they've either got a Wii or not got a Xbox 360 or PS3 yet, which leaves us with 65% of the people (6.5 million). 6.5 million of them will only buy 4 games each and there are 100+ AAA titles and more than a thousand AA or mediocre games. Can you tell me, how much a game developing company will earn in that year? Not much! It's the shops and hardware/console manufacturers that earn the big money. GTA IV has a huge fan base, so even if it gets released in Q2 of take Two's fiscal year 2008, it will still sell better than Halo 3. Besides, GTA IV will get competition from Halo 3, Kane and Lynch, Assassin's Creed and their own Manhunt 2 if they release it on Christmas 2007, and it will most likely be rushed product too. Also, next-gen console ownership will multiply throughout the Christmas and New Year season. Therefore, when GTA IV gets released in March to April 2008, it will be a complete, polished product and more people (who have next-gen consoles) will buy it. Don't you think so?

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Shylock

No, I don't think so.

 

A couple reasons:

 

1. Your stats and examples are made up and overly hypothetical.

2. Industry experts don't base profitability on the first 2 months of sales.

3. GTA has a dedicated fan base (just like Halo), who will buy the game every time.

4. Your theories on market economics fail to take in account countless variables that determine sales.

5. Historically spring/summer sales of anything are pitiful compared to the holidays. Unless of course you take into consideration tax refunds, which I'm sorry to say, most "gamers" don't get because they probably still live off their parents.

 

Now, if you want to get into deep market profitability and rational output levels of holiday shoppers. Lets have at it. But I would bet my copy of Grand Theft Auto IV that I am right and you are wrong. Why? Because my economics degree says so.

 

Somehow I doubt you'll post this on your attention whoring bullsh*t website. dozingoff.gif

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Toni Antonio Cipriani

 

No, I don't think so.

 

A couple reasons:

 

1.  Your stats and examples are made up and overly hypothetical.

2.  Industry experts don't base profitability on the first 2 months of sales.

3.  GTA has a dedicated fan base (just like Halo), who will buy the game every time.

4.  Your theories on market economics fail to take in account countless variables that determine sales.

5.  Historically spring/summer sales of anything are pitiful compared to the holidays.  Unless of course you take into consideration tax refunds, which I'm sorry to say, most "gamers" don't get because they probably still live off their parents.

 

Now, if you want to get into deep market profitability and rational output levels of holiday shoppers.  Lets have at it.  But I would bet my copy of Grand Theft Auto IV that I am right and you are wrong.  Why?  Because my economics degree says so.

 

Somehow I doubt you'll post this on your attention whoring bullsh*t website. dozingoff.gif

No, I'm not an expert at this, I'm talking on this topic from a GTA Fan and Gamer's point of view.

 

Sometimes, even "smart-aleck" economy analysts can be wrong, really. Besides, gamers understand games more than economy analysts like you understand the economy. I don't come up with imaginary games. These games are real and they are released all in the black friday/christmas/holiday shopping season. You won't need a economy degree to see that there are so many games released on the Christmas season that are on the market, or that casual gamers suck at buying "hardcore" games like Grand theft Auto or Crysis, or that there are only a small percentage of people in this world who actually can afford to play video games. You fail to see how many people are out there that cannot even afford to buy more than a game in the holiday season. How the f*ck do you suppose Rockstar Game earn more money from GTA IV compared ot Crysis or Call of Duty 4? To the gamer, all these 1000 over games are must-buys, because the game reviewers say so. They will choose those closest to their hearts. Who cares about economics? So what GTA IV has a solid and dedicated fan base? Call of Duty has a big fan base too. Crysis has a big fan base too. Did they sell well? Yes, they did compared to the res tof the games released in the same period. But they failed miserably compared to GTA San Andreas or Halo 3, right? Exactly. GTA games and Halo games always get released before or after the Christmas seasons (September-October). See, Rockstar missed that period, so they have to release it in 2008. Rockstar and Bungie suceeded in skipping Christmas seasons, so don't shush me. You "smart aleck"s only go by theory and what you learn. So what? Rockstar and Bungie have done it (skipped christmas) and they won. Why would they need to care about guys like you? They're in it for the money, not to please guys who want GTA IV for Christmas!

 

Just reflect on this: Rockstar indeed released all their GTAs and Manhunts BEFORE Christmas, and Bungie released their Halo games before Christmas shopping season as well. What you learn in school doesn't apply to the money-whoring business of games. Perhaps fancy flower arranging or funeral services will be perfect for analysts like you?

Edited by Toni Antonio Cipriani

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Shylock

 

gamers understand games more than economy analysts

If that is the case shouldn't gamers know which games are worth buying if they can only afford one?

 

 

So what GTA IV has a solid and dedicated fan base? Call of Duty has a big fan base too. Crysis has a big fan base too. Did they sell well? Yes, they did compared to the res tof the games released in the same period. But they failed miserably compared to GTA San Andreas or Halo 3, right?

Maybe because those games don't have the following GTA and Halo do? mercie_blink.gif

 

 

Exactly. GTA games and Halo games always get released before or after the Christmas seasons (September-October).

I am going to assume you meant they are always released in October, which they have been. Which actually contradicts your claim that Rockstar WANTED to miss the holiday season. Releasing a game at the times they usually do leads into the holidays, which in turn, lead to higher sales for that time period (2 months after release) as opposed to 2 months after a March release (May).

 

 

See, Rockstar missed that period, so they have to release it in 2008.

Which is exactly what I said. They missed their goal and have to release it later. I am arguing that it wasn't strategy, it was a shortfall. Which apparently you agree with.

 

 

They're in it for the money, not to please guys who want GTA IV for Christmas!

No one is arguing monetary initiatives. At least I'm not. If you could stop for one minute and read, the argument is that Rockstar didn't WANT to miss the holidays, but they were forced to.

 

 

Just reflect on this: Rockstar indeed released all their GTAs and Manhunts BEFORE Christmas, and Bungie released their Halo games before Christmas shopping season as well.

Again, you are backing up my claim that companies want to release games in time for the holidays. Why are you seemingly arguing my points now? sigh.gif

 

 

Perhaps fancy flower arranging or funeral services will be perfect for analysts like you?

Funeral arrangements? LOL. I just hope the person making my funeral plans is a bit more competent then you and wouldn't "strategically" hold off my funeral until after the holidays because people are too broke to come. wink.gif

 

Stop pussy footing around. You were arguing it is what Rockstar wanted. Which you seem to have gone back on in your last post. Missing the holiday shopping season intentionally is bad business. I don't think I can make it anymore black and white.

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Toni Antonio Cipriani
Stop pussy footing around. You were arguing it is what Rockstar wanted. Which you seem to have gone back on in your last post. Missing the holiday shopping season intentionally is bad business. I don't think I can make it anymore black and white.

Now, would you prefer a rushed product like VCS for christmas or a perfect product released in 2008? It's not that Rockstar was "forced" to adopt a startegy where they will only release GTA IV after it is perfect. They chose to do so. It's what they wanted. And, why do GTAs get released on October? Look at how many games get released in November and December in 2004 and 2007 (this year). It's not like any other Christmas. It's crazy. It's a frenzy. There are hundreds of games competing for sales and at the end of the day it's the retail outlets who benefit from the sales, no? It's not bad for business for Rockstar Games, because as you said, GTA IV has a dedicated and solid fan base who will buy the games any time. But, if you are the gamer (if you're not a die-hard GTA fan like me), owuld you choose GTA IV over Crysis? No. Besides, I'm saying that next-gen console ownership will grow over X'Mas and New Year so it's actually good for Rockstar. Besides, IV won't clash with any other games. It's the only must-buy released in March-April 2008, which makes it very easy for it to beat Halo 3.

 

And, one more thing: Halo 3 was released in September, and they have scaled new heights, but now it has been kicked out of cometition by the 50+ odd games that beat it (at least that's what happened in my country). See, Halo 3 MUST be released before Christmas, because it's an over-hyped product. If it's released on Christmas shopping season it will fail (people will be able to tell the difference between a sh*t product like Halo 3 and a AAA title like Crysis).

 

So, if GTA IV will be released on 16 October, it will suck. It will be beaten by other games because it's generally a rushed product with broken promises. Look at VCS, then look at Manhunt 2, then you make your judgement.

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Otter

...you're really not making any strong arguments here. There's no denying that missing Christmas is bad for business. Releasing a bad game is worse for business, obviously, but if R* had their way, they would have released GTA4 on time.

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Toni Antonio Cipriani

 

...you're really not making any strong arguments here.  There's no denying that missing Christmas is bad for business.  Releasing a bad game is worse for business, obviously, but if R* had their way, they would have released GTA4 on time.

Exactly. I'm trying to say that R* is missing X'mas to make more money, because they will have a rushed product AND other games will beat it IF they released it on 16 October. That's what I said.

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Otter

That's the exact opposite of what I just said. bored.gif

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Toni Antonio Cipriani
That's the exact opposite of what I just said. bored.gif

Don't you just get it? Rockstar is missing X'Mas because they WANT to be No. 1. If they release a rushed product, how can they be No. 1?

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Otter

Rockstar didn't release an unfinished game, because they didn't want to release an unfinished game. Full stop. People have already lost millions of accumulated dollars because of this delay - it is not a ploy for more money. You're trying to create some gnarly conspiracy out of thin air here.

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