Take-Two: 8-year wait for Red Dead 2 ‘probably too long’

CEO anticipates shorter gaps between major franchise instalments

Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick expects new entries in the publisher’s major franchises to be released more frequently in future.

Red Dead Redemption 2 arrived over eight years after the original game released, there haven’t been new Grand Theft Auto or BioShock games since 2013, and this September’s Borderlands 3 will launch seven years after its predecessor.

Under Zelnick’s watch, Take-Two will continue “resting titles” and operating a “fewer, bigger, better strategy” as opposed to annualising its franchises, but the executive told GamesIndustry.biz: “I think eight years is probably too long”.

He added: “I don’t see it expanding further. In fact, I would expect in many instances it may compress. I think you’re right in that our ability to engage with consumers on an ongoing basis has [resulted in] some less pressure on getting to market with an all-new title.

“But we find that intersection between the time it takes our creators to do the best work in the industry on the one hand, and what the consumer wants, recognizing that building anticipation is a good thing.”

Zelnick continued: “It’s possible that games may be a bit shorter than they were in certain instances. It’s possible that the ability to deliver content on an ongoing basis for a long time after an initial release of a hit would mean that perhaps that initial release wouldn’t be as long in terms of number of hours of gameplay as previously had been demanded in a world where that was all you were getting.”

Zelnick recently gave the clearest indication yet that Take-Two intends to release Red Dead Redemption 2 on PC.