The global games industry no longer needs to rely on Christmas, says Take-Two.
CEO Strauss Zelnick believes that customers will come out to buy the best games no matter what time of the year it is.
And he ought to know. Take-Two’s Rockstar label launched its last four titles – GTA IV, Red Dead Redemption, LA Noire and Max Payne around May. Meanwhile, the publisher’s 2K label is happy to release games all year round. Spec Ops: The Line arrives later this month – a similar release window to last year’s Duke Nukem Forever.
Zelnick said: "Our industry started decades ago as a toy business and it made sense then to focus on the holiday season. Today, we’re a grown-up entertainment business and perhaps with the exception of the height of summer, the calendar is much less important than the quality of the title.
"We believe that if you give consumers what they want, they’ll come out for it year-round. This approach has served us well and is reflected in the success of titles like Grand Theft Auto IV, Red Dead Redemption, LA Noire, Max Payne 3, BioShock and Civilization V."
Zelnick’s words follows fresh calls from retailers for a more spread-out release schedule. Stores are concerned that the increased focus on Q4 is making the boxed games market unsustainable.
Take-Two announced last month that BioShock: Infinite will no longer be coming in Q4 and was push back until Feburary.
You can read our full interview with Strauss Zelnick in this week’s 104-page E3 special of MCV, which is available to read online or download onto your iPad right now.