It’s no secret that some studios and creators revel in the haziness of their respective audiences. Not to name names — or switch around the letters of names to form anagrammatic Swedish alter-egos — but the undeniable thrill of keeping an audience guessing is one that can transcend both the artwork itself and the process of creating it.
Still, there’s always a fine line between guile and manipulation. While gamers might be tempted to view Rockstar Games as overly cryptic or clandestine thanks to Grand Theft Auto 5’s hermetic absences from the media spotlight — both currently and in the one-year gap between its announcement trailer and any follow-up details — the studio reassured fans recently that it has no intention of being disrespectful or, for that matter, being uptight.
Continuing to address fans in the comments of its Grand Theft Auto 5 release date announcement — the Rockstar Newswire divulged an unexpectedly late September 17, 2013 date back in January — Rockstar reasoned that it simply prefers to release “100% correct information,” and that it’s wary of the much-maligned accidental spoiler (thanks to OXM for mining the comments):
“As we have said before, we have often had long gaps between asset releases on previous games and will continue to do so in the future. We are sorry if you find this frustrating, but please understand, we don’t do this because we ‘don’t care about our fans’, ‘don’t respect our fans’, ‘hate GTA fans etc’ – precisely the opposite!
“We do it because we want to make sure we only release 100% correct information, and because we want to keep plenty back for the actual game release so there are still lots of surprises when you play it.”
So when can we expect more from GTA 5 – more trailers or screenshots or revealing gameplay details, similar to the content that flooded out of Rockstar over the Holiday season? Let’s just say no one’s putting a clock on it:
“Sorry, we can’t provide a timeline as to when you can expect more info or media from GTAV. Right now we’re just bunkered down busy working on the game and aren’t ready to share anything new – please be patient and of course there will be more to see in the months leading up to game release. Thank you.”
Rockstar crafts a convincing argument out of humility and diligence. Of course this isn’t its first time defending its marketing approach; the company brushed off “conspiracy theories” this February which alleged, among other things, that Grand Theft Auto 5 was delayed to September solely to align it with an additional next-gen release. But regardless of the motives behind the mystique we can’t argue with the results: A yearlong hiatus after GTA 5’s November 2011 announcement gave us a sweeping unveiling that, like Trevor at the controls of an F-18, rocketed the title to #2 on our Most Anticipated Games of 2013 list. (It was only out-climbed by the stratosphere-set BioShock Infinite). Five more months may be a long time to wait, but it’s a void we doubt could be filled with anything sizing up to the final experience Rockstar is building for this Fall.
How much more would you like to see from Grand Theft Auto 5 before the game makes its full debut?
Grand Theft Auto 5 releases September 17, 2012, for Xbox 360 and PS3.
Follow Brian on Twitter @Brian_Sipple.