Rockstar parent company Take-Two recently filed for a trademark on "City Stories," a name which suggests a possible relationship with the Grand Theft Auto series.
The trademark in question was filed for on May 15 and lists Take-Two as the owner (which, it should be noted, is always the case with trademarks involving Rockstar games). The application's description provides a very generic, broad list of potential uses for the mark, including "Computer and video game programs and software" and "downloadable computer and video game programs and software." It also lists two other trademarks--those for Liberty City Stories and Vice City Stories--as related properties, and its first use as being on October 31, 2006, the date of Vice City Stories' launch in North America.
Following the success of the three GTA III-era games (III, Vice City, and San Andreas), Rockstar released two PlayStation Portable spin-offs: Liberty City Stories and Vice City Stories. Both games were eventually ported to the PlayStation 2 and, much more recently, the PlayStation 3 (by way of a PlayStation Network release). Since Vice City Stories' release in 2006, Rockstar has been focused on the mainline entries in the series, save for 2009 DS title Chinatown Wars, which was developed by the same studio as the two City Stories games, Rockstar Leeds.
This new trademark may or may not represent any plans Take-Two or Rockstar have for a new game in the City Stories series. It's possible this could be related to the upcoming Grand Theft Auto V story DLC we know is coming. In that case, it wouldn't be the first time the name of a GTA game's DLC was filed for without the GTA name present--Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony's trademark application, for instance, contains no mention of the GTA name.
Alternatively, the less exciting explanation is that Rockstar and Take-Two may simply be seeking to own the broader City Stories name to go along with the more specific Liberty City Stories and Vice City Stories trademarks it already owns. In any event, GameSpot has contacted Rockstar for comment.
When you hear that Take-Two is looking to get its hands on the City Stories name, what do you hope it means--a new game in the City Stories series, like the long-awaited (but never announced) San Andreas Stories, or something else entirely? Let us know in the comments below.