Hold On To Your Controllers, GTA 6 Is Here To Take Investors On a Wild Ride – The Average Joe

    Hold On To Your Controllers, GTA 6 Is Here To Take Investors On a Wild Ride

    Victor Lei — Head of Research

    December 4, 2023

    December 4, 2023

    Rockstar Games is treating GTA fans to an early Christmas present for their 25th anniversary. After a decade of exploring the city of Los Santos, the Take-Two Interactive (NASDAQ:TTWO) subsidiary unveiled the trailer for Grand Theft Auto 6 yesterday.

    City of Dreams: As of Aug. 2023, the GTA series sold over 410M copies globally, and GTA 6 will be the newest addition to the open-world action game series, which takes place in the fictional Miami (a.k.a. Vice City). GTA made up 31% of Take-Two’s fiscal 2022 revenue — and the next game in their most important franchise has big shoes to fill…

    • GTA 5 is the second-best-selling video game title of all time, selling 190M units worldwide. It was also the fastest entertainment release to reach $1B in retail sales.
    • It was a major hit for investors, with $TTWO rising nearly 800% since the release of GTA 5 in Sept. 2013 — more than 4x that of the S&P 500.

    Take-Two’s road to redemption

    It hasn’t been an easy two years for Take-Two. Gaming growth slowed after a COVID surge, and the stock fell over 50% from its peak in Jan. 2021, right after announcing their $12.7B acquisition of mobile gaming company Zynga — which may have been overpriced in hindsight.

    • But 2023 has been a turning point — its stock is up nearly 50% this year, and CEO Strauss Zelnick thinks Take-Two is in for a “significant inflection point in fiscal 2025.”
    • NYU professor Joost van Dreunen thinks GTA 6 can make over $1B in sales within its first week — while GTA 5 hit that mark in three days.

    New game, new direction: In recent years, Rockstar Games underwent a significant transformation over reports of its toxic work environment, long hours and controversial game content. The company has improved its culture by overhauling its management structure, adding new team members and addressing criticisms by removing transphobic content and introducing a female character in GTA 6.

    However, these changes have taken time — and slowed the development of its flagship title, which fans will be waiting a while to play. GTA 6 won’t be released until 2025.

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