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GTA V sends mixed messages about next-gen possibilities

by William Schwartz

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GTA V has been confirmed for release on September 17th, 2013 for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, just ahead of the holiday launch of the PlayStation 4 and presumably Microsoft’s next gen console.  It’s a launch timing that has some fans wondering whether Rockstar is going to release a next-gen version of their open world sequel.  With the PlayStation 4 reveal still fresh on the minds of fans, Rockstar has yet to comment on the next-gen availability of their next game.

Though we have already gotten some clues from Rockstar about their plans for the next-gen.  When asked about a PC version of GTA V, the developers haven’t even mentioned it yet.  Instead, they’ve fallen back to their ready made pr blurb that says they are focusing on making the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions as good as possible.  The PC and next-gen versions of GTA V are likely tied very closely to one another, because both platforms offer Rockstar considerably more power than the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 counterparts.  These versions would likely entail the developer putting in a considerable amount of work in taking advantage of this extra horsepower.  The PlayStation 4’s newly announced system architecture would probably make this statement even more true, if this is the case at all.  Take Two’s Strauss Zelnick recently cast plenty of doubt on the possibility of a next-gen GTA V in a recent conference call for the franchise’s publisher.

‘There is not one gamer who is going to sit out of GTA V hoping for something down the road’

“There is not one gamer who is going to sit out of GTA V hoping for something that is going to come along down the road that’s better,”said Zelnick.  This could indicate that there are no plans for a next-gen GTA V.  It wouldn’t be the first time that a GTA game was released within earshot of a new console launch.  GTA: San Andreas launched on the Xbox just months ahead of the Xbox 360 in an eerily similar situation.  We didn’t see a next-gen GTA until 2008.

Then again, GTA V was expected to launch in the spring of 2013.  A recent delay pushed the game to its fall release date, and Rockstar cited “polishing” as the major reason behind the delay.   Could they possibly be readying next-gen versions of GTA V for the PlayStation 4 with this delay?  Between what Zelnick said in the recent conference call, and what Rockstar has said publicly about the game, it doesn’t sound like it, but with E3 just around the corner, there probably isn’t a bigger announcement than having GTA V on your next gen system.

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