Rockstar serving decaf San Andreas in September

[UPDATE] Company officials and online retailers date Mature-rated Xbox, PC version of GTA: San Andreas for later this month, PS2 version by Halloween.

During its post-earnings-report conference call today, Take-Two Interactive executives confirmed what online retailers first revealed earlier in the day. Namely, that M-rated versions of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas for the PC and Xbox will ship in the next few weeks.

The confirmation came shortly after EB Games began listing Xbox San Andreas' re-release date as September 19 and GameStop showing the SKU as shipping September 26. Both versions of the game had been re-rated Adults Only following the so-called Hot Coffee scandal.

Rescuing the Xbox and PC versions of San Andreas makes the most business sense for Rockstar, who immediately made strides to plug up the biggest hole in a possible bursting dam. The Xbox San Andreas was the top-selling console game for the month of June and was even in the top 10 in July, despite being pulled off the shelves two-thirds of the way through the month.

A simple (and possibly temporary) rectification was made to the PC version, in the form of a downloadable patch, which makes the controversial content in existing copies inaccessible, but new copies of the game are still absent from store shelves.

During the earnings call, Take-Two officials told analysts that an M-rated PlayStation 2 version of San Andreas would be on store shelves by the end of the company's fiscal year on October 31, 2005. The PS2 version of the game was originally released last October.

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