As an avid Grand Theft Auto fan, I can say the next version has been taking forever to hit store shelves. It has felt like forever and in fact it’s been an incredible wait. Dare I say it’s been the longest wait in video game history. We have to talk years, not months of delays. The speculation has been rampant and the rumors have been wild over the years.
How bad has this been for Rockstar? Not to dump on their bad situation, but the reality is the next generation console Xbox One and PS4 have just recently been announced. It may be hard to believe, but Grand Theft Auto 5 is coming out about a month before these next generation consoles. And no, GTA 5 is for the Xbox 360 and PS3. I had wondered if Rockstar would pull a fast one and announce GTA V as a launch title for the new consoles but that’s simply not the case. I’ve been a gamer for year and years and honestly I can’t think of any game in history that has come out in the last few months of a consoles life. Certainly not a video game with the prestige of Grand Theft Auto.
If you step back and think how long a game like GTA 5 can bring in money, it’s longer than most games. There are tons of cheats and presumably downloadable content that can add months of added value to the game. Not only that, but addons are certainly another option for Rockstar in generating even more revenue once people have bought the game initially. Given the pressure and marketing from the next generation consoles, I wonder where that leaves GTA 5 in the year following its release.
A few questions come to mind. Will you buy GTA 5 even if you’re buying the Xbox One or PS4? Will you keep you Xbox 360 or PS3 around just for the sake of playing GTA 5 even though you have that shiny new console sitting there? Will you simply not buy GTA 5 because of the lateness of the release?
I’m sure Rockstar has a book they could write regarding the Grand Theft Auto V experience. I can imagine the behind the scenes trials and tribulations. In my opinion, there was a perfect storm of issues. Perhaps the biggest issue was when the game was under development and Rockstar realized that the programming for the Xbox One and PS4 would be completely different and that cutting losses and switching the game to the new consoles instead of the Xbox 360 and PS3 couldn’t happen. It may have been too far into the process to turn back. Judging by the scale and magnitude of GTA V, there must have been technical issues that arose. Playing multiple characters in the same game? Perhaps that sounded fantastic but the gamble didn’t pay off because of constant hurdles which had to be overcome. Once they were into the game production, it’s quite possible that they had to stick with it. Beyond the point of no return comes to mind once again. The scale of the city and surrounding areas is bigger than anything ever seen in a game like this. After the fact it may have been a poor strategic decision especially if that was a major contributing factor to this late release date.
The Grand Theft Auto series has a very high standard and fan expectation. Having a glitchy or less than stellar game, especially with the hype around it, would possible damage the series and its reputation. It’s all speculation on my part for sure. I wouldn’t expect the people involved in the making of the game to spread any negativity about the experience. I would however expect lots of interesting behind the scenes tidbits to start emerging immediately after the release.
I have no doubt the game is going to be amazing. I’m not expecting to rush out for a PS4 or Xbox One until those systems see their first price drop so I’ll have plenty of time to explore and enjoy Grand Theft Auto 5. I’m curious how you are feeling about it and if you’re just so tired of waiting that you simply don’t care about it. Please comment!