Take-Two Interactive is one of the largest gaming publishers in the industry right now, and with that kind of prestige behind a company, what the CEO says in a public forum will be notable. CEO Strauss Zelnick had A LOT to say during the Q1 2024 company earnings briefing and shared many sentiments fans have been left confused by.
First off, Rockstar Games (which is under the Take-Two umbrella) recently announced a Red Dead Redemption port for the PS4 and Nintendo Switch, which includes the Undead Nightmare DLC package for the game in a $50 USD package. Speaking to IGN prior to the Q1 earnings briefing, CEO Strauss Zelnick explained, “That’s just what we believe is the commercially accurate price for it,” while also stating how the Undead Nightmare DLC “was a great standalone game in its own right when it was originally released.”
This announcement happened after many months of fan speculation and rumours (on forums like Reddit) of the beloved title receiving a potential remaster or remake in the same vein as Metroid Prime Remastered or the recent Resident Evil 4. Instead, fans were less than happy with the announcement due to the new announcement only serving as a port of the title and the price. Users on X (formerly Twitter) responded with a quote from Take-Two CEO Zelnick from 2021 (from VGC), stating “What we’ve done differently than the competition is we don’t just port titles over, we actually take the time to do the very best job we can making the title different for the new release.”
Interestingly enough, in the same interview, Zelnick stated his thoughts on backwards compatibility with its existence as a “benefit to customers” and not a “must have.” Seeing as the aforementioned Red Dead Redemption port — which is curiously missing an Xbox platform release — exists solely due to the lack of backward compatibility, and the title can be found on Xbox 360 for $30, these thoughts carry weight.
Lastly, Take-Two CEO Zelnick expressed his thoughts on mobile microtransactions during the earnings call: “We put a game out there for 100% of the audience and monetise 10% or so, maybe a little more, often a little less. And we think we should monetise 100% of the audience. This sentiment comes after Axios reported at the end of July that the salaries of Take-Two’s top executives (including CEO Strauss Zelnick) had doubled this year, and that $31 million of that was due to incentives from “recurring expenses”.
Of course, the Take-Two earnings briefing for Q1 2024 had more GTA6 speculation in it, and the previous thoughts of a speculative late 2024 to early 2025 release window are still in play. Fans can take a look at the entire earnings report here, or you can swing over to our previous earnings briefing report from May to see what has changed in the past three months.