Analyst: GTAIV could best Halo 3's debut

Janco Partners' Mike Hickey says Rockstar's latest could "conceivably" ship 9.5 million in the first week, more than twice Microsoft's 4.4 million.

790 Comments

GameSpot may get a commission from retail offers.

In announcing Halo 3's first-week sales of $300 million, Microsoft called it "the fastest-selling video game ever." That record might be relatively short-lived, if a new report from Janco Partners analyst Mike Hickey proves accurate.

Hickey attributes the success of Halo 3 to a growing fan base for the franchise, a general demand for high-quality content, and the game's release early in the current generation's life cycle. Those same factors will be playing into next year's release of Grand Theft Auto IV, Hickey said. In addition, the Xbox 360 installed user base will be significantly larger by the time GTA IV comes out, and the addition of a PlayStation 3 edition of the game should boost sales significantly as well. Putting those factors together, Hickey suggests that the market is generally underestimating the next GTA game's initial success.

With Halo 3, Hickey believes Microsoft shipped 5.2 million copies of the game for its first week of release, and sold through 4.4 million. That leads to a 67 percent attach rate (percentage of all console owners who purchased the game) in the US, Hickey said. He believes that rate dips to 46 percent when adding in Europe.

Although Hickey doesn't think Grand Theft Auto IV will sell to as large a percentage of Xbox 360 owners, he notes that the expanding installed user base for the Xbox 360 and PS3 could offset whatever shortcoming there is. Even with a projected attach rate of only 20 percent (which Hickey stresses is very conservative), that would indicate first-week sales for the game of 3.5 million units. Hickey seemed more comfortable with a 30 percent attach rate, which would suggest first-week shipments of 5.3 million copies. But there's also a best-case scenario.

"If the upcoming release of GTA IV attached at the same rate as Halo 3," Hickey wrote, "the title could conceivably ship 9.5 million units of [the] game in the first week, producing an astonishing $466 million in sales." In such a case, Hickey projects first-week sales of the game would approach 8.1 million copies.

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

Join the conversation
There are 790 comments about this story
790 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for AnimeNewtype
AnimeNewtype

Slifer2909: " And also Unlike Halo GTA actually has a good storyline and fun single player" Whoa there, dude. Not cool (and not true, either). Halo's storyline and gameplay surely can't suck if the game made over a million dollars in just 24 hours.

Avatar image for MysticDynamite
MysticDynamite

Even though GTA: Vice City sold over 13 million copies on the PS2 worldwide, GTAIV doesn't have the marketing campaign Halo 3 did.

Avatar image for Slifer2909
Slifer2909

Controversy can Help sell games, and hopfully unlike Halo stores wont be seeing 10% of the copies sold coming back defective And also Unlike Halo GTA actually has a good storyline and fun single player and even if GTA is M doesnt mean parents wont buy it for there kids... Parents dont pay attention to the ratings... EVER And with it being multiplatform and GTA being such a popular series it wouldnt be surprising if it does sell better

Avatar image for xADx
xADx

You would think Gamespot would use common sense on a story like this. Yes we all know GTA will sell more copies it is multi platform. Analysts have been wrong in the past, in the present as well in the future.

Avatar image for Bansheesdie
Bansheesdie

9.5 even on two consoles is an enourmous feat, even though I will be one own the first shipment of those.

Avatar image for ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Well after my previous quote mabe i will have to make a retraction. I actuallty don't like GTA and never have. I guess it might not. My appologies to all!!!

Avatar image for hunter8man
hunter8man

Won't even come close. And Halo doesn't have nearly the controversy surrounding it that GTA does. You won't see corporate sponsors lining up to use GTA for advertising. Even though both are M-rated games, Halo is pretty much played by everyone of all ages. That and I seriously doubt there will be the gigantic lines I saw for Halo.

Avatar image for cejay0813
cejay0813

If u guys havent been reading up on GTA4, it seems like the game is gonna do way more then its predecessors as far as gameplay. That coupled with the fact that it is one of the most popular games ever made....i wouldnt be too surprised if it did better or just as good as Halo

Avatar image for Miss_Wacy
Miss_Wacy

halo 3 dissapointed me and GTA 4 is one of my most wanted games, is possible since fifa 08 killed halo 3 off in its first week in the UK ouch!

Avatar image for VFA-102
VFA-102

Halo, multiplayer, enough said.

Avatar image for fattyxboxbutt
fattyxboxbutt

I doubt it, Im guessing a lot of the younger crowd that bought Halo wont be able to buy GTA. Also, a lot of people bought Halo 3 just because its strong online shooter allowing for some fresh competition. GTA has online but it wont have that same appeal to as many people

Avatar image for MasterChief725
MasterChief725

thats BS, no game will ever top Halo 3!

Avatar image for BredForWar
BredForWar

hahahahahahaha what a joke

Avatar image for Cube_of_MooN
Cube_of_MooN

GTAIV is multiplatform though, so....

Avatar image for Symphonycometh
Symphonycometh

You fluck me. But then again, apparently, GTAIV doesn't need as nearly as enough hype. If this sales more...it's a blow to marketing budgets for M$.

Avatar image for jadefa
jadefa

never, even with the mature rating Halo 3 is a game everybody in the family can play, GTA is a game only wanna-be gangsters will play, it does not have main stream appeal.

Avatar image for jackanderson
jackanderson

This is what gaming's about right? No. Ah what the hell. Place your bets people!

Avatar image for dav1000
dav1000

Gta is an amzing game, the storylines are AMAZING, the ideas in the game are AMAZING, and just the game itself is AMAZING. it will easily beat this record, halos just an fps but gta is an action adventure, racing, shooting multy genred mutha hardcore piece of gaming!

Avatar image for andrew_ribbons
andrew_ribbons

I hate GTA games. Such a total chav fest. Or gangsta fest. Or whatever you wanna call it, it's not what I call a "Threat to Halo". Besides, i've seen the videos, it looks pretty average, nothing special. And yes, exactly, it's Multiplatform. It won't sell as well on any one platform.

Avatar image for Wolfcp11
Wolfcp11

i dont really like GTA...

Avatar image for ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Probably so the game is a multi-platform release for one of the biggies game franchises ever. The next report you see will saying "Analyst say Fish do swim in water; Dogs may go potty on fire hydrants; Games will be sold in stores!!!" That is about as obvious as a Car with seats. Unless there is a massive ban world wide or the game sucks some how it will sell more. Maybe not at launch but it should.

Avatar image for hx0r1337
hx0r1337

highly doubt it...

Avatar image for PS360Fanboy
PS360Fanboy

I have no doubt that this will outsell Halo, with the delay and multi-platform, it will definatley make more money

Avatar image for iboo01
iboo01

I doubt it

Avatar image for prodyg
prodyg

lol....ofcourse it will! its a multiplatform game.....it would be sad if it didnt. One things for sure is that it wont sell near the halo numbers individually on any of the systems.

Avatar image for atreyu27
atreyu27

I doubt it..

Avatar image for GazzaB
GazzaB

Well regardless, Halo 3 is still the best selling exclusive.

Avatar image for amsscorpio
amsscorpio

the thing about this is that halo is a straight shooter with a big multiplayer attraction and online mutliplayer. Grand theft auto cant compare since its not that type of game EVEN if they are both shooters in their repespective ways. GTA is gonna be badass of course I willl always love it better than some halo 3 crap since i still think its overrated , ( dont get me wron halo 3 is awesome but too many fanboys overate it way to much to the point of annoyance). so yeah to me gta > halo

Avatar image for moocow21
moocow21

I really don't think this will happen.

Avatar image for Kattox
Kattox

GTA is succesful and a great series but there's no way it's going to be THAT succesful.

Avatar image for Yuck_Too
Yuck_Too

Granted it will be multi-plat so more people will have access to it but after their last showing at E3 I'm not rushing out to pre-order it.

Avatar image for M00N-CAT
M00N-CAT

I think GTA IV will pwn halo 3's sales because GTA IV has alot more stuff that you can do in the game

Avatar image for Some_One_Plays
Some_One_Plays

The people who were standing at midnight were stupid there was enough games for everyone. So with this game I can just walk in the very next day and get my copy just after a good nights rest, lol.

Avatar image for teirdome
teirdome

I don't think that GTA IV has quite the same appeal to as many people as Halo 3. Case in point is the Air Force using Halo to recruit. The violence in Halo is extremely different from the GTA series, and I personally think that this difference limits its appeal. Don't get me wrong, it's going to be a blockbuster, and I'm quivering in excitement over this one, but I cannot logically say that it is going to best Halo 3 for that very reason.

Avatar image for ratradler
ratradler

A lot of people are exited for that game and it will be multiplatform. I wonder if they can do it without spending 10 million on marketing.

Avatar image for lamprey263
lamprey263

well, I'm not standing in line at midnight again

Avatar image for SoupNatsi
SoupNatsi

This will be the first mega-game being released on 2 consoles so it should break records. Hopefully it will influence other games to go multiplatform from the start.

Avatar image for scotty_9
scotty_9

wow thats crazy

Avatar image for ebookerd1
ebookerd1

Well probably it is a multi system release of the highest selling franchise next to madden. Next the analyst will be saying "Analyst predicts that games will be sold in stores!!"

Avatar image for webdoom
webdoom

wouldnt be suprised