Rockstar could make new GTA every year, but won't

Rockstar North's Leslie Benzies explains fans would "lose interest" if series were annualized; says GTAV will redefine open-world multiplayer.

The Grand Theft Auto series could join the likes of Call of Duty, FIFA, and Assassin's Creed in releasing a new title every year, but Rockstar Games will not do this. Explaining to IGN, Rockstar North's Leslie Benzies said the company has the capacity to make a new game every year, but doing so would ultimately hurt the franchise and its appeal.

"When we were working on GTAIII we were a much smaller team doing something new and experimental," Benzies said. "We had no idea how the game would be received, just a belief that what we were working on was really special. Since then we have grown into a much larger team and our games have much higher expectations. It's not just our own faith in each project we've had to repay, but our fans' too. We could easily have churned out a new version year after year without really progressing as a franchise, but if we did that, eventually the fans would lose interest. We want every one of our games to meet and exceed the players' expectations so they always want more, and as such GTAV feels like our most ambitious project yet."

"We could easily have churned out a new version year after year without really progressing as a franchise, but if we did that, eventually the fans would lose interest."

Elsewhere in the interview, Benzies spoke about how Grand Theft Auto V is pushing the series forward, saying that the game's three protagonists and multiplayer will redefine what the series has been known for.

"The ability to switch between different characters allows the player to do things that wouldn't have been possible in any other GTA game," Benzies said. "And on the multiplayer side, we hope that GTAV will do for multiplayer open-world games what GTAIII did for open-world single-player games."

GTAV is due out worldwide during spring 2013 for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. A second trailer for the game will launch today at 8 a.m. PDT / 11 a.m. EDT. Check back with GameSpot for additional coverage throughout the day.

Written By

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

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Discussion

0 comments
Nathan_R_Rork
Nathan_R_Rork

I just wrote three marketing papers this semester on how Rockstar has this model of releasing fewer games that are very polished, and what a brilliant strategy that is, and how well it has served them.. Glad to see they're not gonna go changing that now and make me look like a fool!In fact, I finished my last one this morning. I just got home. . . I suspect I will finally go to sleep soon. ^_^

Orgil220
Orgil220

I'd rather play 2 or 3 GTA in a year than CoD, just my thought, dont be hatin

Paul2005
Paul2005

im glad they wont milk the series. but i doubt people will lose intrest on buying. i mean look at call of duty!

rarson
rarson

Meh. As it is, I feel like the franchise is still getting stale, as there never seems to be much difference between the games other than the setting and characters. It's always the same kind of missions and the story usually does little other than get in the way of the action. After viewing the trailer, maybe GTA V will help alleviate the "been there, done that" feeling but I'm not holding my breath. I actually enjoy the older games (namely the first one and Vice City) better than the more recent ones.

 

HOWEVER, having said all that, I really appreciate that they understand not to dilute their franchise, and I wish more companies would strike a better balance between giving gamers what they want and keeping them wanting more.

Shredwolf
Shredwolf

I'm not the biggest fan of GTA but I'm very fond of Rockstar Development and the way of it's doing things. They should consider sequels of their other franchises, too like Bully.

KeviNOlighT
KeviNOlighT

I got really, REALLY scared when I read "Rockstar could make new GTA every year", but then I read: "but won't". Aaah, such a relief... and Rockstar keeps being awesome :). Much respect.

dmfreak
dmfreak

That is so great of you Rockstar and you deserve every fans' respect especially mine. Hope you can release another Red Dead game as well. Just take your time on making your games very huge without destroying its quality.

SSJMonkey
SSJMonkey

There's lots of smaller game companies that do this, but I'm glad to hear that even when they get this big and could easily sell out with yearly rehashes(Madden, Call of Duty, Pokemon, etc), but they still choose quality over money. I have so much respect for a company like this and this game looks amazing to boot.

Rakou
Rakou

"Rockstar North's Leslie Benzies said the company has the capacity to make a new game every year, but doing so would ultimately hurt the franchise and its appeal."

 

That's respect right there!

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

I don't really understand how being able to switch between 3 characters is going to revolutionize anything.Sounds nifty, sure... but it's not that great.

 

Also, I'm glad GTA isn't a yearly release like other crap games (COD comes to mind immediatly.) I'd be pissed if GTA was the same garbage every november. Instead we have these massive playgrounds that last us years before we really tire of them, and just as we are about sick of it... another one is right around the corner.

 

I just hope they do an undead nightmare with this GTA.

Duke_51
Duke_51

To me, Rockstar is like the Radiohead of the gaming industry, and CoD is like the Justin Bieber of videogames. I'm not knocking Bieber or CoD, if you like them that's fine, but it's like the philosophy behind corporate music has nestled its way into the videogame market. Again, I'm not complaining, it's more just like an observation.

 

R* seems to not have that corporate formal rationality of quantity over quality, despite being so huge and successful.

Chrlywtrfall
Chrlywtrfall

I'm not the biggest fan of Rockstar but the philosophy is sound. Look at how many people gave up on Assassins Creed after they started making a new one every year.

mokalid
mokalid

that was good thinking make gta every will be shit. not like some other games 

playniko69
playniko69

So much respect for Rockstar. To me, they are the savior of video gaming. Quality over quantity, it's a virtue that most game companies should latch onto.

 

tightwad34
tightwad34

Thank you Rockstar. You're name isn't misleading at all.

ciaxhieu
ciaxhieu

omg shut up and take my money already!!

Hey_Jay
Hey_Jay

Anyone? No one? Okay, I'll say it...

 

THAT'S WHY YOU'RE ROCKSTARS.

 

/lame joke

snowSHO
snowSHO

Makes me wish Bethesda took more time on their in-house games. I still play a lot of GTA4 and even Half Life 2, even though there is considerably more to do in Skyrim than in those games combined IMO. It's a certain polished feel...

Krinnium
Krinnium

you see, the CoD franchise is still churning out games because we still buy them. i havent bought a cod game since MW2, since it sucked, and i dont support regurgitated content. however, if we really want to see the industry change to the business model discussed above, we need to stop supporting crap. I mean black ops II sold 1M games on launch night. that doesnt show the dev's out there that we want them to stop churning games out. it tells them the opposite. 

thebeachguy90
thebeachguy90

Love em, hate em, you just gotta respect the hell of these guys. There's not many like Rockstar out there,  choosing quality over $$$. Unlike a certain franchise we all know.

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

Eh the grand theft autos already feel kind of similar to each other. Lets see a red dead redemption 2 instead

dAt1gUy415
dAt1gUy415

This is exactly what happened to me and Modern Warfare

RVP_182
RVP_182

finally someone from the big boys is talking sense. wish other companies would fall in line.

SirPlaypus99
SirPlaypus99

if only a certain AAA company would follow this ._.

donmega1
donmega1

sooooo they just wait longer to release the same crap

Savior4Life
Savior4Life

These guys at Rockstar are brilliant..!!! Kudos for not succumbing to the capitalist idolization of revenue but remaining a developer of games by gamers for gamers. You guys rock! 

DinoBuster
DinoBuster

Rockstar again demonstrating that you can maintain integrity AND sell a lot of product.

thedemon44
thedemon44

@Paul2005 I used to LOVE cod. Now, a new one comes out, and I shrug in bordom, knowing they offer nothing new or exciting. 

iskulaatikko
iskulaatikko

 @rarson Ability to swap between 3 characters during a mission, sounds pretty much like switching it up for me. I believe the hardest thing in making open world games like this (keeping in mind that gamers expect a 20h experience) is to avoid repetitiveness. This seems like a bold approach to the problem, but since it's Rockstar  - i trust them completely :)

Saketume
Saketume

 @Shredwolf There are always interesting things to be found in their games for sure. I had fun with "Bully". I never seem to bother finishing any R* games however.

 

I think I only played one or maybe two GTA games till the end and it felt a bit like a chore. I didn't finish Bully either.

 

RDR is the exception. I had a great time playing that till the end.

 

I wouldn't mind seeing some new IPs with the same open world system they keep using.

 

I'd like to see their take on a super hero game for instance. But maybe it would be better with something more original.

rarson
rarson

 @VenkmanPHD 

 

Yeah, because there aren't games with zombies randomly shoved into them.

Saketume
Saketume

 @Duke_51 Maybe they learned their lessons when they released GTA London 1969 and GTA Director's Cut.

 

They may not have flooded the market with GTA but with those releases it started to feel like that's were they were going. I'm glad things calmed down afterwards.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @Chrlywtrfall I gave up when I was playing brotherhood and revelations came out. When I can't keep up with a game series, it's just too much.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @snowSHO How do you still play Half-Life 2? Don't get me wrong that game was awesome, but is there really anything left to do after all this time?

iskulaatikko
iskulaatikko

 @Krinnium See the problem here is, people (who buy it) don't think it's crap. The majority ( apparently by looking at sales numbers) want to play the game franchise constantly, and after a year (or two in my case) the game gets a bit too familiar, and you want an update. thats it. the whole point of buying a game every year is you like the game the way it is, and you just want the update they've made. If people really thought that it's not enough, who the f* would buy the game on release date?I like the way you think about this "problem" but since it's not up to a few (smart) people to decide what's "good" for the franchise, i'm afraid there's nothing we can do about it. 

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @Krinnium I agree completely, but there is a fundamental problem.

 

CoD gamers (for the most part, not all of them) aren't the kind of gamers that are digging the internet on stories such as these. Caring about the sort of things we do. It's a little like a casual gamers motivations compared to a hardcore gamers. They are just differant.

 

The people buying call of duty just want the yearly updates and to be able to play the same thing that pleases them until they A.) Can't stand it anymore, or B.) It stops being made.

 

Personally, I prefer games that advance the medium as a whole. When something really shines on the artistic value of video games, or does something just flat out original (which is the EXACT opposite if war shooters).

 

But none-the-less, the masses will always buy a highly polished turd. Just throw in a new nut or corn every year and they will be satisfied.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @thebeachguy90 I don't know, their focus on quality is what leads to the company's success. I think it's more an issue of delaying gratification. Cash out now, or really work hard to cash out even harder later on. That sort of thing.

 

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @abcdefgabcdefgz RDR was cool and all... but I got so bored running around the desert all the time... GTA's modern day setting strikes a cord with me. Especially if we are going to see a GTA version of Undead Nightmare... omfg I would die happy.

Orgil220
Orgil220

@Saketume except the zombie dlc, god it was awful, couldnt past 10 minutes