Take Two CEO hints at Red Dead Redemption, Bioshock Sequels
Believe it or not, it’s been four years since the release of Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption. The game was a runaway commercial and critical success, selling millions of copies, and earning numerous game of the year awards. Last year, Bioshock Infinite won similar amounts of praise. Now, we’ve got news on the status of both franchises. Read on for the details.
Take Two has never been the kind of publisher to rush a game out to store shelves before it’s done, and they’ve made quite a habit of being picky in their choices of games. Unlike most publishers, you can usually count the number of games Take Two publishes in a year on one hand. It was this uniquely selective process that CEO Strauss Zelnick was talking about at this week’s Cowen and Company analyst conference when he brought up Red Dead Redemption. Check out his comments below.
“So our selective approach, which we’ve taken since ’07 I think has paid off. Now, we have gotten more by taking that approach; we’ve launched one new successful franchise every year and I would like to keep doing that particularly because I talk about permanent franchises, but not everything is going to be a permanent franchise. Some of our great franchises eventually will lose their luster and some will hopefully be permanent. I pretty much know the ones that I can assure you are permanent. It’s obvious that GTA is a permanent franchise as long as we keep delivering this incredible quality; it seems quite obvious that Red Dead is a permanent franchise, again with the same caveat, or Borderlands, for example, and NBA and others.”
In case you didn’t want to read the whole thing, he referred to Red Dead Redemption as a “permanent franchise.” Not exactly an official sequel announcement, but when the CEO of a publisher refers to a game as a permanent franchise, it pretty much guarantees that a new game is on the way. Perhaps we’ll learn more at E3.
One franchise we probably won’t be seeing at E3 is Bioshock. After last year’s Infinite, Irrational Games imploded and relinquished control of the franchise to Bioshock 2 developer 2K Marin. But that doesn’t mean the franchise is dead. At the same conference, Zelnick had the following to say about Bioshock’s future, in response to an interviewer suggesting that the franchise had not yet reached its creative or commercial zenith.
“We haven’t given any color on how you should think about it yet except we do believe it’s beloved; we think it’s important; certainly something that we’re focused on; something 2K Marin will be responsible for shepherding going forward. I don’t want to say much else except to agree with you. I think there’s a lot of upside in that franchise. It hasn’t necessarily been realized yet. And the question for the future, assuming we decide to answer the question, would be ‘How do you stay true to that creatively?’; ‘How do you do something exciting?’; and ‘How do you do expand the market?’. That would be the natural drill. We’re starting from a good point on it. And certainly it’s been a great piece of business for us; it’s been a profitable piece of business.”
Again, not a proclamation that a new game is on the way, but reassuring remarks nonetheless.