Grand Theft Auto VI is presumed to be the next title in development at Rockstar Games, and now an SEC filing by publisher Take-Two Interactive might indicate that it won’t be ready until 2023. [Update: Take-Two has contradicted the takeaway in a statement to GamesIndustry.biz, saying the table only reflects marketing commitments for third-party companies and not its internal projects. As a result, this wouldn’t indicate any potential marketing spend on a new Rockstar game.]
A 10-K filing by Take-Two, which includes presumed marketing spend for the next five years, shows that the company is planning to spend over $89 million in its 2023 financial year. This period starts on April 1 2023 and ends on March 31 2024, with double the marketing budget than any other year during this five-year stretch by. According to analyst Jeff Cohen of investment firm Stephens (and reported by VentureBeat), the budget is likely for Grand Theft Auto VI.
Despite this, Cohen points to previous 10-K filings by Take-Two where the marketing budget accurately predicted the launch windows of games before their announcement, with Red Dead Redemption 2 being the most recent example. Although timeline can change over a five-year forecast, it seems plausible that Take-Two’s current plan is to launch the next Grand Theft Auto installment a decade after Grand Theft Auto V.
With both the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 launching later this year, and the on-going success of Grand Theft Auto Online, it seems Rockstar is in no hurry with getting a sequel out. That, coupled with the departure of Rockstar founder Dan Houser earlier this year, would likely tempt the developer to continue supporting its online offering while planning for a new era in their most popular franchise.
Take-Two Interactive recently announced that Grand Theft Auto V had passed over 130 million sales since its launch in 2013, which accounts for more than 40% of all Grand Theft Auto sales across the entire series. The publisher has also revealed that it has 93 games in development currently, but declined to talk about the future of Grand Theft Auto.
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