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.


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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.

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Avatar image for ChiefFreeman

Halo sucks. I hope the Xbox One Halo will revamp a lot of the stale gameplay the series has become known for. And it will run at 60 frames a second! Also...I have to take a shit.

Avatar image for wagepeace

sorry terminator... but i have to disagree. while halo may have a pretty intriguing storyline, it doesnt rule out the fact that all the GTA's have ALSO had a storyline that centers around the main character, while still involving the free-roaming capabilities that halo doesnt support.

Avatar image for Terminator736

How can you people say that GTA is better than HALO!!!!!!!! Halo is one the best games ever!! GTA is stupid and has no point but to kill people and take their car!! Halo has a real story that is a very good sci-fi story. GTA has no story.

Avatar image for Joures

halo may be a great game and all but.....preorders estimate a 400$ million in rockstars thats nearly 5.5 million copies in the first week only....think about it for a sec....hell think about it for more!!!

Avatar image for mfouad

GTA 4 will be the best game of all time!!

Avatar image for spartanlaser

i think it will sell muchas! but the delay kinda ruined it for some people.

Avatar image for moe357

GTA IV will sell twice as much as when halo 3 when it came out the first week.. that's my opinion

Avatar image for Dawg9000

San Andreas sold tons. Now that GTA IV will be on both consoles, it will sell MILLIONS! lol

Avatar image for Kenji_Masamune

GTA4 could beat halo 3? This is a no-brainer. GTA SA sold almost double what what Halo 2 did last gen (14 million PS2 copies vs 8 million halo 2). Plus with this game going to both systems, yes it will be a run-away success like the last game

Avatar image for mariomusicmaker

Ahh it all comes togather now... the 2nd delay is just a con to make people want it more! they care soo much about beating down halo :P

Avatar image for lordmarkitgs

Grand Theft Auto has always been preferred over Halo. Simply because its a longer-played game, and although it lacks in multi player abilities; it is building on this for the forth edition. I may be biased as I am a playstation user, however i do not have a ps 3 and use my PC for most games. GTA lV will sell more in its entire product life cycle, rather than Halo, which seems to be a buy on release - not later game.

Avatar image for frasierfreak666

Halo's single player is crap, but the mulitplayer is good. It's a very average game overall. Not even in the same league as GTAIV ... How about some more info on the game!!

Avatar image for astex

grnd theft auto pisses on halo and halo is rubbish ps3 is the best

Avatar image for WarhawK-harris

I always did love the GTA series more than Halo, nothing personal to the Halo fans who might read this, I kinda hope it does. But I'm not making any guaranties.

Avatar image for bigdaddyrocks98

An easy reason why the GTA games did not have release day numbers like the Halo games is because people playing a GTA game are not desperate to move onto the follow-up if they're still playing their current one. Don't blame the PS2's large user base for the fact that people with Microsoft's consoles get bored after playing a Halo title with a short story, then sit and wait for the next one. A large reason for those big release numbers is based on fan boredom. The GTA titles were spaced out reasonably, and many people were still having fun with what they had, and could afford the time to wait on making the next purchase. As for what numbers it will sell being a combined figure, 360 users need to remember before flaming that us PS guys did not ask for Rockstar to go multi-platform with it. So stop accusing "the enemy" of cheating to beat the Halo record.

Avatar image for -KILLIONAIRE-

No it won't! GTA IV will kiss Halo 3's ass in the end! They will bow to the almighty Mjolnir Mark VI Armor of Master Chief and wax it every day!

Avatar image for Homerj

"The only way that GTAIV will break Halo's record is if they combine the 360 and PS3 sales together, thats it! Separately, it won't be close." That statement, by sheer numbers, is only partly correct. Given the number of consoles in market and the attach rates for both consoles, the maximum number of copies that would be sold for PS3 would be in the neighborhood of 1 to 1.5 million. To beat Halo (currently at around 5 million copies sold, GTAIV would have to sell equally as well as Halo on the 360 AND would have to include sales of PS3 copies to break the sales record of Halo 3. Quite simply...I DONT THINK SO!

Avatar image for tythewarrior

Pre-ordering this game soon. This is probably going to be the most hyped next-gen game so far, maybe even the most hyped game in general.

Avatar image for Karaam

i'm gettin' my copy, how 'bout you guy? theres your answer.

Avatar image for Holopaw

Halo 3 is great and all, but I think there will just be more to GTAIV. Both awesome games, although they can't really be compaired.

Avatar image for metalkid9

you damn right it will best halo 3, its gonna smoke it like a cuban cigar

Avatar image for Squeets

mjc, same here... I want both =P

Avatar image for 09231991

The only way that GTAIV will break Halo's record is if they combine the 360 and PS3 sales together, thats it! Separately, it won't be close.

Avatar image for XileLord

Why the hell does it matter? Halo 3 is only sold on ONE console. I doubt ps3 will see a exclusive outsell halo 3.

Avatar image for coedmaester

It always depends whether someone likes a down to action game like Halo or someone who likes to play games just for the story and lots of drugs, s*x, and money like GTA IV. These games cannot be compared since one is mainly played just for the multiplayer and one is played for the story. For the money part on who is going to get more money, I'd say its GTA IV since Halo is only available on one console and maybe soon to be on the PC but were not in that yet. So GTAIV hands down win.

Avatar image for rts11220

and halo sucks short story(all peeps bought the game due to story if they start fresh they wont even bother with it)and online my ass i'll go play some CS if i want online

Avatar image for rts11220

didnt bungie went off on its own so will anyone think a halo is coming to sony consoles?

Avatar image for coolcat888

It's common sense. Halo 3 did extremely well for just being on ONE system. GTA IV is on TWO systems. The game is just as and if not more popular than Halo 3 (Please, no flaming). For developers, there is really no reason on why not to go multi-platform. If you release the game on more than one system, what are the developers going to get more of? MONEY!

Avatar image for SalarianChemist

The statments of this "analyst" are 100% nonesense!!! Here's why: 100 Million people owned the Playstation 2 when the last Grand Theft Auto was released. 150 Million PC gamers had the ability to buy that game. However, none of the Grand Theft Auto games ever came close to breaking the record of Halo 2, which was $125 million on the first day. Halo 3 is the only game that broke the record of Halo 2...Halo 3 earned $170 million on the first day and $300 million in the first week. History has proven that Grand Theft Auto does not have any chance of even coming close to Halo 3 in terms of sales. Even if you doubled the number of Xbox 360 owners and PS3 owners, you would still not have anything close to the number of PS2 owners when previous Grand Theft Auto games were released. If Grand Theft Auto eventually did sell all those copies, it certainly wouldn't be on the first day or the first week; it would take years on multiple platforms!!! Grand Theft Auto doesn't have hardcore fans like Halo does...there won't be a $129 version of Grand Theft Auto where you buy helmet.

Avatar image for ottumatic

Impossible. GTA series had been receiving attention for the wrong reasons all the while. And to surpass Halo 3 in sales requires some decent marketing effort made by Take-Two which I doubt will happen since politcians will jump on any publishers' throats nowadays for any trivial reasons they could find.

Avatar image for MoeSyslak

Halo has too much competetion, the list could go on with sci-fi first person shooters. GTA has its own genre, games like saints row didnt quite cut it.

Avatar image for zhevox

i think you're right midnite, from the fist time i saw this article, i was thinking, how could halo 3 win? this game is going to be almost twice the sales, no doubt bout it..

Avatar image for MidniteShadow

Im not Bias or anything but I would like to point out that halo 3 was only on XBox 360,and having that GTA is on multiple platforms. it would kinda be a stupid idea to even compare the Two. If GTA can somehow triple the first launch of halo 3,then GTA is the fastest selling,because that GTA is going to be released on 3 paltforms,ps3,Xbox 360 and PC. Dont get me wrong GTA is a very great game,anyone who says other whys must be smokin comparing two games,when one is only for 1 System is either Bias,or jsut plain dumb. thats all i Have to say :) (same goes for movies in the Box office ,why compare how much they rake in at the box office today then back in 1980s,moveis were what 2 dolars back then . convert them into nowdays)

Avatar image for Phraun

I'm gonna gave to go with coolcat888: How the hell does edcase HAVE GTA IV... Methinks he's been smokin' the crack. Or maybe he's an idiot, there's always that possibility...

Avatar image for RE4_Tipsters

Halo 3 can't even stand up to Grand Theft Auto San Andreas' sells, GTA IV is the best game ever compared to Halo 3, Halo 3 is starting to wind down anyway and Halo 3 players are going back to Gears Of War, I know cause I went on my Gears Of War and went to Xbox Live and there was dozens of games.

Avatar image for coolcat888

@ Edcase "I have this game and i really have no idea why people love it so much...i jus cant figure it out. Its no better then any other game...i would rank half life above it" How do you have Grand Theft Auto 4?

Avatar image for jmaster299

Halo 3 being the "Fastest Selling Game Ever" is only in reference to it's first day and first week sales. Other games like GTA San Andres took longer to make the same $ but have been out sooooo much longer they have higher total sales...for now. Also, this will be the 7th GTA game not the 4th as I've seen some people say. It might be the forth for console but the GTA series started in 1998 for the PC so it has had a fan base for 3 more years then HALO and a fan base that has crossed nearly every platform, from PC, to Dream Cast, PS1 and PS2, XBOX and even hand held platforms. I'm sure GTA IV will do great, and maybe even top HALO 3's first week sales, but it will do it with sales on 2 platforms. I would be surprised if GTA IV's Xbox 360 sales out sell HALO 3 the first week. Also, we will all see HALO 3's sales jump again this Christmas. All that being said, it's a great time to be a gamer.

Avatar image for DatGMan

Well duh, GTA is multi-platform, H3 isn't.

Avatar image for i-like-pie

Cmon, GTA has waaaaaaaay more replay value

Avatar image for Sparky2002

Halo 3 is the second fastest selling game ever CAME in second only to GTA: San Andreas, DID NOT EVEN TOP GTA SA SALES LET ALONE GTA IV COMING

Avatar image for Sparky2002

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Avatar image for The_Weekend

GTA will win hands down. Halo won, but will not win again!

Avatar image for Gomemaster

News Flash McGregor most Gamers aren't Kids.

Avatar image for Envoy_X

Of course GTA will do fantastic plus its on PS3 and X360. By the time GTA4 is out I think people will be looking for a new game too.

Avatar image for Zoomer30

GTA is gonna own Halo. The story alone kills halo.

Avatar image for alanorman

GTA IV not only could, but also should win over HALO 3 in both sales nd quality. Halo 3 is just an 'okay' game, but nothing more than that. GTA IV? Oh, that's a totally different quality level!

Avatar image for Edcase

I have this game and i really have no idea why people love it so much...i jus cant figure it out. Its no better then any other game...i would rank half life above it

Avatar image for connor93

ive got both consoles and halo 3 is one of the most overhyped games it easy to complete in 2 - 3 hours

Avatar image for mikado01

I think this one should go under the "well DUUUH!" file. Man I want to make my living off of stating the obvious!