GTA 5 and Red Dead Publisher Not Interested in "Milking" Franchises, Says Exec

"We've seen that fatigue in other franchises."

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Grand Theft Auto 5 and Red Dead Redemption publisher Take-Two Interactive has discussed why it doesn't release its non-sports titles annually, saying it is weary of product fatigue that can result from "milking" a property.

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During a business presentation held in New York on Tuesday, company president Karl Slatoff was asked about the business reasons behind not annualising its most popular brands, specifically if that was a challenge in terms of keeping investors interested in franchises that go quiet.

"Yes, it is a challenge," he replied, before going on to state Take-Two still has no intention of annualising its franchises. According to Slatoff, the publisher's reasoning is to avoid franchise fatigue by managing releases more strictly. This, in turn, makes a brand viable for longer than one that is released yearly.

"We don't intend to change annual strategy because of product fatigue. [Take-Two] creates franchise value and [releases have] to be managed deliberately," he added.

"It's tempting to have continuous releases and milk a franchise as far as you can, [but] we've seen that fatigue in other franchises in the games industry. With almost every single franchise for us, the latest release is bigger than the one before."

Take-Two's chief executive, Strauss Zelnick, echoed similar sentiments in November 2015, when he said annualisation can lead to the erosion in the value of a brand.

He said at the time: "The market asks us, 'Why don't you annualise your titles?' We think with the non-sports titles, we are better served to create anticipation and demand. On the one hand to rest the title and on the other hand to have the highest quality in the market, which takes time. You can't do that annually."

Zelnick added that the company can still generate the kind of revenue that annualisation would provide through alternative methods.

"What we would like to do is be able to have enough hit intellectual properties in any given year, whether we have Title A or Title B, is not the issue," he said. "We'll have a handful of really great franchises and new intellectual properties that together really have the economic impact of an annualised business without the detriments of an annualised business."

Looking forward, Zelnick indicated that some of Take-Two's franchises would be released on a more regular rotation, though not necessarily on a yearly schedule. He noted that BioShock and Borderlands franchises are already on this path.

Titles from its Rockstar Games division such as Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption, and Max Payne, however, are unlikely to have a set schedule.

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Avatar image for anevilwithin
anevilwithin

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Reason number 1 that Rockstar Games and Naughty Dog are the best developers in the industry. Though I don't necessarily agree with what they've done with GTA Online, it's been obviously milked to an extent.

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boxcar_cadavers

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Ignoring all the other comments here *looks around*. I honestly think more game publishers need to adopt this policy.

The game market is over-saturated like hell right now. I can't count all the times this past year that I've said to myself "Oh shit...that game looks awesome...but it comes out in like 2 months and I have like 20 other games that I still need to play." If publishers were to slow down their production rate not only would people (like myself who have jobs and a life) have time to complete these games, but the quality of games would be much greater and we wouldn't end up with shit like Assassins Creed.

On the other hand I would very much like to see a new RDR...asap

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scarecrowx93

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Wow so much stupidity in this comment section, how is take two milking the game when they're releasing FREE content for the online portion of the game? I swear people are messed up in this gen because they base a games quality off its online which is stupid.

Gta 5 had at least 20 something hours of content in the main game if not more, it was solid, in fact when i first bought it for the 360 i played the entire single player story and have only ran into ONE glitch. for a game like gta 5 to be as polished as it was on near decade old hardware is feat within itself.

As for the shark cards no one makes you buy them so there's absolutely no reason to even speak on them. As far as im concerned there isnt a single franchise in the gaming industry right now that touches gta success wise, go ahead name ONE that rivals the longevity of any gta game dont worry i'll wait.........and it can't be a game thats declining or died off. Secondly there is only a HANDFUL of games that can even compete with gta as far as quality is concerned, at least from last gen to current gen.

Funny how folks talk shit on a game that people still play and enjoy 3 years later and they're the ones buying these throw away titles like the division that will be dead in 1 or 2 months from now and complain about it later.

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rosinmonkekyx17

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@scarecrowx93: This comment made me LMAO so much

"division that will be dead in 1 or 2 months from now and complain about it later."

Good one mate

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Avatar image for darklordvyperx
darklordvyperx

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They sure seem to be milking the crap out of GTA Online. They're milking a dead cow at this point.

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MichaelSosa8

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How about actually improving the games gameplay? GTA still plays like shit.

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BartleDoo

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Take Two needs to stop acting superior to other publishers, like they're doing everything so elegantly.

Theres 2 extremes. Releasing games too often vs. releasing games too far apart. Going 3 years without even announcing a new game is too far.

I hate GTA V, its half-a**ed campaign and its grind-fest Online. What have I supposed to do for the last 6 years? play RDR the whole time?

Also GTA Online is the definition of milking. They know no-one will do missions to afford a $6 million yacht. Please, just give us a new ****ing game this year. Take your stupid GTA Online content packs, and throw them out the window.

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darklordvyperx

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@bartledoo: Agreed

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Avatar image for rosinmonkekyx17
rosinmonkekyx17

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That's what they all say

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Raveneye

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@rosinmonkekyx17: Well, they don't release one per year with minor changes, do they?

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kingjeremy77

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I just want Manhunt 3

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brianhaslip

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I admire that sentiment, honestly. That said...it's been 11 1/2 years since Red Dead Revolver and 5 1/2 years since Red Dead Redemption. I don't think anyone would accuse you of milking anything if you dropped a current gen Red Dead title, Take Two.

Even just a current gen remaster of Redemption would be great.

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tanis8585

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Regardless it seems they are not in it for the money it seems else they would have released Red Dead Redemption on PC by now. I know it's not from lack of interest from the PC community and have never really cited a reason not to besides piracy which is a joke. They would more than make their money back from porting it regardless of the piracy rate.

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darklordvyperx

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@tanis8585: Why release anything? They make so much off GTA Online Shark Cards to bother.

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darkbuster_exe

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I admire the sentiment, but how long can they uphold it against investor desires

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Avatar image for raveneye
Raveneye

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@darkbuster_exe: It has worked for the last 15 years, so hopefully it will last.

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hystavito

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Edited By hystavito

@darkbuster_exe: Yeah, that can become a problem.

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Spaced92

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There are 18 Civilization games according to the wiki, and that's ignoring the Alpha Centauri's and such. And 15 GTA titles. I know releasing a major game in a franchise every year Ubisoft or CoD style has become a norm, but 2K milk like crazy.

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Noctisumbra

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@spaced92: I'm sorry, but you cannot pad the number of Civ games with expansions that require the base game. They are additional content, not new titles. There have been 8 main entries into the Civilization series since 1991 if you include the Civnet remake, as Civ IV: Colonization is actually it's own thing.

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deathblow3

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@spaced92: idk games for different systems and the amount is not milking as much as the same game every year. those 15 games span 18 years also its 13 games and 4 of those games are handheld games.

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poseidion

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Fine. GTA V is a bang for the buck. But they said they weren't going to release on PS4 and XB1, everybody bought the game, and so they did. People have been crying for a story DLC and instead "free" DLC keeps coming so microtransactions keep growing. Please don't tell they haven't been milking the game.

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55584623

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Saying that they are milking GTA V is quite a stretch, so they should not remake the game on PS4 and X1 and leave everyone still hanging with PS3s and 360s? And please don't start with the delays on the PC version, yes it took a while but it was a fantastic port. GTA online well, it's all free content isn't it? How come people are even complaining.

One thing though, i really wish they would focus less on Online and do more stuff on single player, it's really sad to see the amount of content they added to the online since launch while the single player got pretty much nothing aside from a couple of vehicles and weapons, that just sucks!

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Bilal100

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Edited By Bilal100

All of you talking about them milking GTA Online do realize that it has nothing to do with the complete single player experience don't you? I mean you're getting 20+ hours of a very decent game with a proper conclusion to the story, I didn't even bother playing GTA online because I felt like I got my money's worth with the single player alone and also because I don't like multiplayer in shooters. I swear gamers these days are so used to finding problems and stuff to complain about with every game.

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MaddenBowler10

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That's great and all but I do wonder, where the hell is the real DLC for GTA V? I'm not a fan of any of the new content and "DLC" they've added to GTA Online, mainly because GTA Online is a complete hassle to get into. I'm more interested in big DLC expansions for their single player mode.

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DEATHWlSH

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@XAGMNINETY: Microtransactions have been the plague that has ruined this generation of games, which Rockstar has wholeheartedly said "yes" to in GTA Online.

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Kumy

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Well GTA 6 will be amazing regardless. It's smart of Rockstar to wait it out and not milk it.

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Spartan_418

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Their microtransaction scheme with GTA Online is the very definition of milking.

They're squeezing every last drop of cash they can out of just one game, without adding any meaningful new content to it.

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Raveneye

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@Spartan_418: Not as much since you are not forced at all to buy those cards. Missions get you more money the more time you take to end them. Doesn't take much to make a million (and that if you don't do Heists)

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lunchbox2042

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Edited By lunchbox2042

The only thing they seem to be interested in is milking GTA online.

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Avatar image for muzza93
muzza93

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I hope the next GTA doesn't have lock on aiming. I have no interest in GTA online for that reason.

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BigDaddysHouse

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@muzza93: You can play in free aim lobbies without the lock on can't you? But that isn't as fun to most people. Most people would rather play in lock on lobbies.

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rosinmonkekyx17

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@bigdaddyshouse: Lock-on is fun if you have the hang of it

All you do, aim, move analog stick a little up, pull the trigger, easy headshot

Love trolling people with the starter pistol

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TheZeroPercent

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@muzza93:
--half hold the left trigger when you aim

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thecman25

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too late for that

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DEATHWlSH

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That's true. They don't believe in milking their franchises. They only believe in milking their customers through use of shark cards.

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Atirus

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@DEATHWlSH: - I about spit my drink out when I saw the title of this article! Shark Cards!!! They are milking that GTA Online cow dry!!!

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petek480

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They sure don't have a problem milking gta online.

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ecs33

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Edited By ecs33

How can you milk a franchise that has had a grand total of one game? (RDR)

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muzza93

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@ecs33: RDR is the second game on that series ya clown

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bmpynks

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@muzza93: That is true-ish, but 2 games in 12 years is not milking anything.

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Chaos1031

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That reminds me I should buy a Shark card or that 12th port of San Andreas.

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lunchbox2042

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@Chaos1031: San Andreas.

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deactivated-5d762a7e1423c

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A tad disingenuous, no?

GTA releases 1997, 99, 01, 02, 04, 05, 06, 08, 09, 13

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StHapns247

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Already feel like GTA is worn out.

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JustinGoSka

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I'd rather a franchise have all really good games than one or two good games follows by a ton of clone-and-reskin sequels.

Assasin's Creed is fun, but they come our faster than I can even play them. I also don't bother buying AC games when they come out, because I know it'll cost me less than $10 if I just wait for the next game in the series to come out.

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wearelegion5000

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We have enough CODs and Assassins as it is. I'd hate to see GTA or RDR go the same way. R* has my respect for that decision.

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chemicalegypt

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Edited By chemicalegypt

Product fatigue my ass, the have found the duck that lays golden eggs that is gta online. As long as it keeps making substantial amount of money, they wont give out new products to us fans.

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