Grand Theft Auto V sales "extremely front-loaded" says analyst

Doug Creutz says gamer anticipation and next-gen consoles on the horizon means open-world game will have shorter sales tail, though GTA Online could generate "several hundred million dollars per year."

Grand Theft Auto V sales are expected to be "extremely front-loaded," according to Cowen & Company analyst Doug Creutz.

In a note to investors today, Creutz said GTAV will have a shorter sales tail due to "high gamer anticipation" and the launch of next-generation consoles in November.

The analyst is now modeling sales of 25 million units for GTAV in the game's first year. Based on the $1 billion three-day figure Take-Two announced last week, Creutz said the open-world game is likely to have already sold at least 15 million units.

Take-Two has not disclosed specific unit sales figures for GTAV, saying only that the game has generated over $1 billion in global retail revenue to date. The game achieved this milestone faster than Call of Duty: Black Ops II (15 days) and The Avengers (19 days).

By comparison, Grand Theft Auto IV has shipped 25 million copies since the game launched in April 2008.

Creutz also said in his note to investors today that GTA Online--due to launch on October 1--should offer "ample opportunities" for content packs and microtransactions over the next several years.

"Call of Duty generates several hundred million dollars per year in digital revenue, and we think GTA could do the same," Creutz said. "Success here would take significant pressure off of next year's as-of-yet undetermined title slate."

GTA Online is rumored to feature microtransactions, though Rockstar Games has not commented on this yet.

According to Robert W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian, GTAV is likely to be released on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 in 2014 to "extend the value of the franchise."

For more on GTAV, check out GameSpot's review.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
Grand Theft Auto V

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153 comments
hypgnosis
hypgnosis

I need to be an analyst. Getting paid to talk out of your ass seems great.

BH14
BH14

Launch titles dont tend to be great highly rated games especially as highly rated as gta v. On top of that, gta v is the type of game with high replay value. People want great games more than just great graphic game. Gta v will be selling for long time.

OuroborosChoked
OuroborosChoked

Well, even if the sales dwindle, making back 4x your initial investment in THREE DAYS should be enough to satisfy most human beings...

We should all be so lucky...

El_Zaggy
El_Zaggy

Its goign to sell tons on current gen then when the sales will slow, they will release a pc/next gen version. Another 'analyst' failure incoming.

tightwad34
tightwad34

The game is going to sell a lot more. There's still a couple of months before the next consoles come and then there's Christmas which you can bet will move a lot of copies. If it really has sold 15 mil in a week, then that's pretty damn insane.

wizardboyus
wizardboyus

gta v super hd high res edition? doubt it...it looks great already anyway

RehumaticChimp
RehumaticChimp

Dan Houser about game development on next gen. No GTA V.


“Of course we’re interested. But no, not in terms of GTA, because we’re always working on the current game. We look at the tech at a more practical level: what will be ready for which game that we’re working on further down the line. We don’t have another GTA in development, we don’t work on three of these games at a time. That would be phenomenally depressing.


“So, in terms of GTA, no. We get pitched by the hardware manufacturers on what they’re planning to do and our tech guys come up with ideas on how that could be used. Does this influence design decisions? Of course. But we’re not sat there fantasizing about 10 years down the line. We’re so busy with what we’re doing right now.”

Evdne971
Evdne971

I don't believe GTA for X1 will be superior in any way, except for graphics.

This game was made for the 360, so I doubt they'll add more players at a time in a match.

I don't see any game developer grabbing a game, adding more players, bigger map, more NPC's and re-selling it, they just don't work that way unless it's only graphics.

It's far too expensive, they could just sell the same game on X1

If this happens, it'll be MONTHS away, by then I'll be bored of it and be in school.

The only way I could see a superior version of GTA, is if it were released on the same day for PC, PS3-4, 360, X1

GhostofWar75
GhostofWar75

Lol saints row 4 sold only a million in its first week 

denhoffi
denhoffi

Really Mr. analyst after 1$ in sales in 3 days you dare to make a risky analysis like that? Wow....that's like saying in a football (soccer) match when a team leads 3-0 in the 89th minute that: "That Team is probably going to win!"  No shit Sherlock!

david1230
david1230

when people buy the next gen consoles, and when gtav becomes ready for those consoles, quite alot of people will rebuy just on graphically improvements alone.

DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

There is one next-gen open world game coming out this year. Dead Rising 3. It will have no impact on GTA5 sales, no matter how good it is.

I'm not a professional analyst. So it's possible for me to be wrong sometimes.

Diegoctba
Diegoctba

Yes, he is right, he is an analyst, he knows.

hystavito
hystavito

Something else I don't like about the microtransactions, the revenue could delay a GTA6 for a longer time than it would normally be.  I like GTA5, but so much of it is still the same and many of the same limitations are holding it back.  I really hope we don't have to wait 5yrs for another GTA that is actually designed to take advantage of all the new memory and power of next gen consoles.

PJthePlayer2
PJthePlayer2

Once they are done milking the past gen console gamers for all they are worth (don't get me wrong, I bought a copy for the 360) and ironing out all the bugs they will re-release massively enhanced versions of the game for PC (which I will buy) and most likely for the Xbox One and PS4 and bring home another massive payday.  Trust me, they thought this all out from day one and know how to make the most cash.

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

Grand Theft Auto V sales "extremely front-loaded" says analyst


LMAO! who cares if its front loaded if you're STILL walking away with over a BILLION in sales at the back end!  Idiot.

This is just more PC elitist propaganda by PC Gamer Mag and Nvidia.  You're just bitter because your community has to resort to an online petition to get the same game as the console gamers (who you think you're better than) Period.

ghstbstr
ghstbstr

I think that Rockstar deserves all the money that they are making with GTAV and their other games. They make great games, and I look forward to many more.

nurnberg
nurnberg

I disagree with this analyst.  The new consoles will probably get a slow start and not affect the sales of GTA at all.  I mean, they have basically no game; I don't believe they will sell huge numbers this year.

Restivus
Restivus

Extremely front loaded & shorter sales tail, translation for discount gamers: sale price of GTA V will decrease faster over time compared to GTA IV.

kamikazeespleen
kamikazeespleen

I'm still trying to justify how what an analyst says can be classed as news. Its just a common excuse by Eddie to fill up the news page with fodder. Please stop doing it.

Creed02
Creed02

Some of company should learn from R*...  Specially EA

wookiegr
wookiegr

I wish I could buy GTA5 but I sold my current gen hardware in anticipation for the PS4 and it's launch titles. I know I'm not the only one to do this or are planning to soon. I am extremely hopeful Rockstar beefs up the game to make it even better for PC and PS4 release to take full advantage of what better hardware can provide.

Dredcrumb9
Dredcrumb9

If rockstar includes an option to turn off the screen flash kill indicator, I will change my score to a 9.0 or maybe even a 9.5. My friend got a seizure from watching me play this game while I was shooting people. The Kill indicator ruins the whole feeling of being in an open world and makes the combat feel cheap, especially sniping.

advocacy
advocacy

I would've appreciated it more if the writer would've elaborated more on what exactly "front-loaded" means in this case.

WolfgarTheQuiet
WolfgarTheQuiet

@BH14 yeah if you dont buy next gen, i have to finish GTA V story before November 29 and PS4, wont even bother with online part of it

WolfgarTheQuiet
WolfgarTheQuiet

@OuroborosChoked haha thats true but they will charge for online which i wasnt going to bother with, finishing story mode by the time PS4 is out in Aus

JamesHetfield89
JamesHetfield89

@El_Zaggy This dogmatic hatred of financial analysts on this website is very, very strange. People obviously don't understand what they do and who they do it for.

Also, his forecast is obviously for the two versions currently released. He's not forecasting sales of something that doesn't exist yet...

vscott453
vscott453

@Evdne971 Battlefield says hi. One of the big name games that done this.

Evdne971
Evdne971

Besides, adding stuff is what DLC is for

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

@denhoffi  

They have to say things like this to make sure that some of the more idiot shareholders realize that these types of numbers will fall off relatively quickly. We make fun of analysts for saying things like this but there is, sadly, a reason that they have to say them. 

Relvar
Relvar

@DiscGuru101 ummm this is next-gen. I think the PS Fail and X-Bone are "Nexter Gen" or "The Gen after Next" or something.....

mont345
mont345

@Gravity_Slave your right they talk ish about console games and how diablo 3 was made for pc first, now look pc gamers are begging for a GTA5 version. Rockstar don't give they A$$ SH$t..!!

JBStone1981
JBStone1981

@advocacy It should be obvious. Front-loaded means that the bulk of the sales will come early in the release window, and quickly fizzle as time goes on. This is as opposed to other games which may have consistent sales figures over a number of years, or start slow only to garner higher sales later on. 

hypgnosis
hypgnosis

@WolfgarTheQuiet @OuroborosChoked Online costs nothing,it;s free with gta v, and even getting free missions and dlc later on. Only thing that costs money is buying in-game money with real money but that's completely optional and not necessary for most people that will be playing hours a day.

vscott453
vscott453

@sirchick @wizardboyus I am sure that will be saved for the pc/ps4/xbox version

sirchick
sirchick

@DwightShrute_ @sirchick @wizardboyus as a PC player its rare i play below 60FPS. For GTA's case i have it for PS3 so i made the exception as i didn't want to wait :P But it very noticeable when your not use to it :(

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

@PJthePlayer2

lol no they're not...just like you're not getting a superior version of Red Dead Redemption.  I don't think you got the memo.