Take-Two to copublish Elder Scrolls IV, Cthulhu

Grand Theft Auto publisher signs pact with Bethesda Softworks to bring its popular fantasy RPG to PCs and next-gen consoles; will also distribute horror game.


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Even though Take-Two Interactive's 2K Games subbrand is barely a week old, its logo is already set to appear on some of the industry's highest-profile franchises. Last week, the publisher announced it had inked a deal with Firaxis Games to publish the next installment in its ever-popular Civilization series. On Sunday, the company revealed it had finalized a previously announced deal to make it the sole third-party publisher of Major League Baseball games, which will also be released under the 2K Games label.

Today, Take-Two announced it has landed another flagship title for its new subdivision. In a joint statement with Bethesda Softworks, the company unveiled an agreement to copublish The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion under the 2K Games brand. The follow-up to the best-selling Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (and its expansion) will again feature a sprawling 3D world full of magical monsters and treacherous quests. The game will be set after the events of Morrowind, which is further explained in our Q&A with the game's producer, Todd Howard.

Under the agreement, Bethesda will have complete control over The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion's development and will retain the rights to any sequels. Take-Two will assume all publishing, sales, and distribution rights for the game, which will be released for "PC and a next-generation console system" at an unspecified later date. Given that Elder Scrolls III was released solely for the Xbox and PC, the Xbox Next would seem to be the leading console candidate.

In addition to Elder Scrolls IV, another Bethesda game will also ship bearing the 2K Games label. In a "separate agreement," Take-Two will also copublish Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth, which is currently set to ship on April 18 for the PC and in early 2005 for the Xbox. In development since 1999 at British studio Headfirst Productions, the first-person horror action game is based on the demonic fiction of author H.P. Lovecraft.

No other Bethesda games were mentioned in today's announcement. However, speculation has already started that the next game in the Fallout series, the license for which Bethesda bought from Interplay last year, might very well bear the 2K Games label.

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