Take-Two Interactive continues to earn most of its revenues from consoles as digital becomes the dominant medium.
Rockstar Games parent company Take-Two Interactive's recent fiscal Q1'18 earnings show strong growth in net revenues primarily driven by Grand Theft Auto Online's strong monetization. These trends show that Take-Two's games are evolving well past their purchase point with additional content, which significantly builds digital revenues. The earnings report showed that Take-Two is continuing to make most of its money from digital distribution, and that consoles are the most lucrative platform.
Out of the $418.216 million Take-Two earned in fiscal Q1'18 net revenues, consoles accounted for 82% of that value, or $344.917 million, up 35.78% year-over-year from fiscal Q1'17. This marks the sixth consecutive year in a row that consoles have pulled in the bulk of Take-Two's net revenues.
PC and "other" accounted for just 18% of total net revenues during the three-month period, or $73.299 million, up a mighty 27.41% year-over-year.
Warner Bros. Interactive's new upcoming Middle-earth: Shadow of War game will have loot box-based microtransactions that players can buy with premium currency.
Monolith and WB Games has confirmed Shadow of War, the sequel to the hit Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, will be monetized with in-game purchases via a new Market system. In the Market players can spend two forms of currencies--Mirian, which can be earned naturally in the game, and Gold, which is also doled out to users as they play but can also be purchased with real money as a premium currency on the Xbox Store, PlayStation Store, or Steam--on randomized loot boxes.
Loot Chests, War Chests, XP Boosts and Bundles are the different types of items purchasable on the in-game Market, and all have randomized rewards depending on the chest's tier. The chests and boxes themselves will be segregated into varying tiers of quality; ie higher level chests can deliver rewards of greater rarity and efficacy. Loot Chests contain randomized weapons and armor, War Chests include Orc followers of randomized rarity to fill out the in-game army, XP Boosts are consumables that level up Talion more quickly, and Bundles package Loot Chests, War Chests, and Boosts together.
"Everything a player can buy with Gold can also be earned in the game over time for free, but Gold gives players the option to acquire these items faster. No Gold purchases are necessary to enjoy the complete game experience," Monolith Productions Community Specialist Steve Rabago affirms.
As we've reported, Red Dead Redemption 2 isn't currently slated to release on PC when it launches in Spring 2018. That may not change and the massively anticipated Western sequel could be exclusive to consoles.
During a quarterly earnings call, Rockstar Games parent company Take-Two Interactive discussed how important PC is for its business, and the response may give little hope for a Red Dead Redemption 2 release on the platform. During the call Take-Two President Karl Slatoff was asked how important PC is to its major titles, in which he replied:
"The answer to that really depends on the title. Some titles are heavily weighted to PC, for example Civilization an XCOM, and some titles are less weighted to PC. So it's really on a title-by-title basis. The great news is that the PC market is vibrant to us, it's a great market for us and a big market, and a core market," Mr. Slatoff said.
"These are consumers that are highly engaged, and PC is predominantly digital and allows for great engagement with the consumer. For us the PC market is very important, very exciting, and something we focus on."
Of course one analyst outright asked Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick if Red Dead Redemption 2 will come to PC, and as you'd expect, Mr. Zelnick waived off the question. "Any updates about any of our titles will come from our labels," he said, which pretty much means "it's up to Rockstar."
The global interactive media market, which includes video games software, esports, streaming monetization, and virtual reality, is expected to peak at $104.6 billion in 2017, analyst firm SuperData predicts.
In its latest Trends and Insights on Games and Interactive Media report, analyst tracking firm SuperData forecasts the video games market to breach $100 billion in 2017. The report, which only includes digital media like PC, mobile, console and VR game software sales, microtransactions, and earnings from gaming video content such as Twitch, says that the global market revenues will grow by 12% year-over-year in 2017 to $104.6 billion. Contrarily, analyst firm Newzoo predicts the global games market will rake in $108.6 billion, up 7% year-over-year.
Mobile revenue is expected to jump by a mighty $6.7 billion in 2017, and 92.25% or $96.5 billion of total games industry revenues are from digital games, SuperData reports. Digital games are up 10.28% year-over-year, and are expected to make up 73% of revenues in 2020.
The Virtual reality (VR) market earnings are expected to rise by 104% in 2017 to $3.7 billion, with 72.97% of those earnings coming from VR hardware such as HMDs, and 27.03% coming from software. SuperData reports the VR market pulled in $1.8 billion in 2016. The VR market will grow by 664% in 2020, and is expected to pull in $28.3 billion.
It looks like Gran Turismo creator Kazunori Yamauchi is getting his hands dirty on GT Sport, with the assets for the game over-specced for the slightly faster PS4 Pro, right up to 8K.
During a studio tour through Polyphony Digital, Finder.com reports that Yamauchi said that they're creating assets for GT Sport for future releases of PlayStation consoles, our strongest hint of the PS5 yet. Remember that I had an exclusive source tell me that the PS5 will feature a discrete GPU, and not an APU - so this news makes sense.
Yamauchi told Finder.com: "It takes six months to create a single car. It's over-specced for PS4 Pro. So we are building for future versions of the console rather than the one we see today. I think it would be no problem to run it at 8K even".
8K, eh? If Sony can pull it off and have 8K ready for the PS5, we might be looking at a huge push into the worlds of 4K 60FPS gaming on consoles, with the option of 8K 30FPS.
After months of waiting, Arkane is finally fixing Prey's FPS issues on PS4.
Prey's new 1.05 update will address a the notable frame rate issues on PlayStation 4 and PS4 Pro platforms by introducing "fixes to address screen-tearing/stuttering". Arkane's latest patch will roll out across all platforms--Xbox One, PS4, PC--and aims to squash a number of bugs and issues, including crashes, performance hiccups, and, of course, stamping out specific unintended player exploits.
Arkane hasn't delivered an ETA on the patch, but community forum manager Jurassica affirms it'll release sometime soon. Check below for full patch notes.
Illfonic and Gun Media have confirmed that Friday The 13th: The Game has sold almost 2 million copies since its late May release.
Friday The 13th: The Game is an interesting spectacle in the games industry. Developed by an indie team of only 30 people, many thought the game would be crushed under the insurmountable weight of the movie series, which cast a wide shadow. And at first it looked like Illfonic and Gun Media were in serious trouble: the game launched on PS4, Xbox One and PC with massive server congestion, as well as glitches and bugs on all platforms.
Despite these hurdles, the game went on to sell 1.8 million units in its first two months, Gun Media head and F13 co-creator Wes Keltner told GamesIndustry.biz in a recent interview. Keltner goes on to highlight just how unprepared they were for the massive influx of players: "We looked at our player numbers from the beta, along with pre-orders and then added a 30% cushion. That's how we set up our servers and database for launch. We were soooo wrong. 100,000 players hit us in the first 20 minutes, and our servers melted. Our first weekend was chaos. The entire team slept at their desks trying to keep up with demand."
Konami's first quarter earnings show the Japanese games-maker is doing quite well for itself, despite being near-universally disliked among gamers.
Controversial games publisher and developer Konami kicks off its fiscal year with strong overall growth in revenues driven by successful performance of its videogame branch. The company earned total revenues of 55.743 billion yen ($503.303 million) in the quarter ended in June, up 12.8% year-over-year. Total operating profit reported for the quarter was operating profit 12.2 billion yen ($110.129 million), up a strong 34.2% from fiscal Q1'17. Konami's total profits for the three-month period are also up 46.4%, with 8.5 billion yen ($76.729 million) being generated.
Out of Konami's four segments, its Digital Entertainments videogame segment was the biggest contributor to fiscal Q1'18 revenues. Catalyzed by sales of the popular Yu-Gi-Oh! card game series, a PES 2017 soccer mobile game, and Super Bomberman R on Nintendo Switch, Digital Entertainments pulled in 51.87% of total quarterly revenues, or 28.914 billion yen ($261.06 million), up a strong 35.53% year-over-year.
Massive sales of popular fighting game Injustice 2 contributed to Warner Bros. quarterly earnings.
Time Warner today announced its second quarter earnings, showing strong growth in key sectors including its videogame segment Warner Bros. Interactive thanks to massive game sales. In fact, the parent company said that Injustice 2 was the "highest-grossing console game in the second quarter of 2017," falling in line with projections from analyst firms like NPD Group and SuperData.
Injustice 2 topped the digital sales charts in NPD Group's tracking data when it released in May, and dropped to number 2 in June. The massively popular DC fighting game sold 500,000 units in its first month of availability on PS4 and Xbox One's digital storefronts.
Nintendo has officially confirmed that pre-orders for its massively sought-after SNES Classic Edition microconsole will begin later this year.
After Walmart cancelled SNES Classic Edition pre-orders due to accidentally opening them online, many frustrated consumers anxiously waited for an official response from Nintendo. Now the Japanese console-maker has confirmed that SNES mini pre-orders will go live sometime later this month across all retailers, including Best Buy, Amazon, Walmart and Target, and that a substantial amount of additional consoles will be shipped to ensure adequate supply.
"We appreciate the incredible anticipation that exists for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System: Super NES Classic Edition system, and can confirm that it will be made available for pre-order by various retailers late this month," Nintendo wrote in a recent Facebook post.