'Grand Theft Auto V' and 'Red Dead Redemption 2' Have Sold a Combined 150M Units

Grand Theft Auto V - Red Dead Redemption 2 - Publicity - Split - H 2020
Courtesy of Rockstar Games

Rockstar Games' two most recent releases drove a bump in revenue for parent company Take-Two Interactive over the holiday fiscal quarter.

Take-Two Interactive, the parent company of Rockstar Games and 2K Games, saw another increase in revenue over its most recent fiscal quarter, up to $930.1 million from Q2's $857.8 million.

The bump was driven by a strong holiday season for Rockstar titles Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption 2 (launched in 2013 and 2018, respectively), which, combined, have now sold more than 150 million copies worldwide. GTA V makes up the bulk of that number with more than 120 million copies sold, while sales of Red Dead 2 have now topped 29 million. Both titles hit a peak in active users for their online offerings last quarter.

NPD Group reported last month that GTA V was the best-selling title of the past decade while Red Dead Redemption 2 was the best-selling title of the last four years. 

Earlier this week, Rockstar revealed that co-founder and head writer Dan Houser would be leaving the company in March following an extended absence dating to last spring. When asked how Houser's departure would affect the company, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick tells The Hollywood Reporter that the studio's recent successes during Houser's absence were a good sign. "[Rockstar co-founder and Dan's brother] Sam Houser and I continue to be connected at the hip," says Zelnick.

Elsewhere, Obsidian Entertainment's The Outer Worlds, a sci-fi role-playing game published by Take-Two and subsidiary Private Division, exceeded sales expectations. The game title has now sold more than 2 million copies since its launch in October on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC, with plans to debut on the Nintendo Switch later this year.

Sports title NBA 2K20, from 2K Games, has also performed well, topping 8 million units sold since it launched in September. WWE 2K20, however, failed to meet Take-Two's expectations, though the company did not reveal sales specifics for the title. 

Development of WWE 2K20 was brought in-house at Take-Two, a first for the series after years of being developed by Japanese company Yuke's. The title received a poor critical reception, with many noting numerous bugs throughout the game. Zelnick says he takes "full responsibility" for that decision but adds that Take-Two remains "fully committed" to the franchise.

Borderlands 3, from developer Gearbox Software, has been another revenue driver for the company. Debuting in September, it topped its 2012 predecessor in user growth over the first five months post-launch by more than 50 percent. The "looter-shooter" title has sold nearly 8 million units and is expected to be a record-setter for the franchise. 

On the horizon, Take-Two expects its studios to continue supporting the online communities of titles like GTA V, Red Dead Redemption 2, Borderlands 3 and NBA 2K20 with new content. Additionally, Private Division plans to launch a new title, sci-fi first-person shooter Disintegration, later in 2020 and a sequel to 2011's Kerbal Space Program (which has sold more than 4 million units) sometime in fiscal year 2021.

Take-Two also announced the formation of a new studio, Cloud Chamber, in December that is currently working on a new title in the BioShock franchise

Looking ahead, Take-Two is projecting net revenue between $635 million and $685 million for Q4 and income before taxes of $123 million-$151 million. For the full fiscal year 2020, Take-Two projects net revenue between $2.9 billion and $3 billion.