Like an ill-advised race down the slopes of Mt. Chiliad, Grand Theft Auto 5 just keeps on rolling. Glittering reviews, front-page news and a cool $1 billion in bankable cash, and the crim-sim creators over at Rockstar Games would appear to be sitting pretty.
The latest landmark to feature in this alternate-universe L.A is one of unit sales, with 15 million copies being shifted in the last week alone. Addressing Cowen & Company investors earlier on today, market analyst Doug Creutz unveiled this take of the sales situation, stating simply:
“Based on the $1B three-day figure Take-Two disclosed, we believe the game has already sold through at least 15MM units.”
“For a game to sell 60% of its first year units in just three days would be abnormally high; we estimate that Call of Duty sells about 45-50% of its first year units in its first week at retail. […] However, for now we are assuming that GTA V sales will be extremely front-loaded due to high gamer anticipation, and will also have a shorter sales tail given the launch of next-gen consoles in November.”
Creutz’s cautionary approach isn’t all that unusual, given the arrival of the long-awaited 8th-generation this November. Whereas, in years past, a wildly successful late-3rd/early 4th quarter title might have sparked major system sales across the Holidays, Rockstar won’t be able to count on similar support this time out — even if the developer has partnered with Sony to offer an 11th-hour PS3 bundle.
Rockstar will also have to contend with a generational shift of another sort, as the outdated consoles gain a new and younger audience – both because of their comparatively more attractive price points and digital ‘hand-me-down’ status. The company can’t very well be seen to target this new market, even if some parents do choose to flout the game’s hard R-rating.
In closing, Creutz signaled his belief that the game would go on to sell around 25 million units during its first year of release, or, to break down the figure another way, an additional 2/3rds of its current tally spread out across 11 months & 3 weeks. That number does seem particularly conservative, especially after the game’s record-breaking debut, and signals the belief that the vast majority of interested parties have already purchased the game.
Do you believe Grand Theft Auto 5 has already reached most of its audience? Will Call of Duty reclaim its sales crown in the 8th and latest generation of home consoles? Where next for the mighty GTA juggernaut? Have your say in the comments below, and be sure to keep up with all the latest GTA 5 news, right here on Game Rant.
Grand Theft Auto V is out now for Xbox 360 & PS3 platforms. GTA 5‘s online component debuts October 1st 2013.
You can follow Sam on Twitter @GamingGoo.