Want to know why you’re not seeing a lot of Take-Two label games on the App Store? That answer resides in a new Forbes interview with CEO Strauss Zelnick. When the conversation turned towards iPad and iPod games, the business-first-man whipped out the phrase “economically meaningful.” When used in a negative light like he did in the talk, it means, “not making the kind of money we want.” In short: the cold reality of business is why.

“We’ve tried a bunch a things. We tried Chinatown Wars [$9.99 / HD] for the iPhone, and we’re thrilled that we did it, and it was creatively successful. At the price point for which we can sell on the iPhone, it is not going to be economically meaningful,” he said.

To keep this in focus, Chinatown Wars started out as a Rockstar Leeds Nintendo DS project. The App Store version is a port with a few bells and whistles. The original DS title did not perform up to expectations, either.

“At the end of the day, we are interested in creating economic value, and what we intend to do is make something and sell it to millions and millions of people, and sell it at a high price. You don’t want to spend lots and lots of money to make something you are going to sell to a small amount of people at a low price.”

So, smart -- thus, cold and non-consumer facing -- business is, part of what’s gumming up the Take-Two / App Store works. Pricing specifically was touched on. Zelnick, naturally, favors boosted prices. When pressed, he seemed opened to the idea of a $20, $30, $40 tablet games -- but provided that said game brings a “robust and engaging” experience.

“I don’t see why not. Tablets are ubiquitous. And tablets are a great game platform. And it’s the right sized screen. And you use the tablet to have an engaging experience. So if all of that’s true, I don’t see why we wouldn’t be able to sell a robust product for the same price point. The reason the price point is currently lower for an iPhone app is it is used for five minutes, and not for a hundred hours,” Zelnick said.

There’s no little pretty bow to wrap this up in -- Zelnick was non-committal about the App Store as a whole. The thing is, though, is that Take-Two exists to make money and there’s no doubt at all that the App Store can provide in this arena. The question we’re asking now is if Take-Two will scale back experiences to cater to lower prices or if it actually does plan to charge premiums for console-like titles.

[Via Forbes]

  • Anonymous

    Considering high-quality iPad games are made for as little as $4.99 and often are made by indie developers, they will be hard-pressed to find buyers for $20+ games. They will try to rely on the cachet of brand name recognition to get sales. At the end of the day though, when it's the dollar driving their motivation and not a love of the art, it's a sign they've lost their way and rarely do such companies produce a quality product, thus self-defeating their intent to sell high-priced products to millions of consumers. The iOS platform and store gives the passionate indie developer a much better shot at success than the old physical-boxed computer game ever could, and that's a good thing. Competition from those passionate about it is the best defense against big corporations trying to siphon dollars from our wallets for something shiny but shallow.

    • Anonymous

      You say "high quality" and I agree, the quality is good, but they still don't match up to the likes of console games.

      • Anonymous

        So? Neither does a touchscreen interface, especially overlaying the viewing area.  But let's remember that the discussion and comments by Take_Two were about tablet games, not console games.

      • Anonymous

        Yeah, and the tablet games they were discussing were beginning to infringe on console game prices: "$20, $30, $40". If you're gonna start charging similarly the content has to start comparing similarly. So far nothing does, so it's no surprise people won't pay more than $9.99 at most.

    • Decoy Octopus

      Man please! Take Two's games are head over hills better than anything in the appstore. Youget what you pay for.

    • ltcommander.data

      I don't think there is any doubt that indie developers are perfectly capable of producing high quality titles or that there are already plenty of high quality titles in the App Store. The issue is the scope of the experience. For example, Infinity Blade is a high quality experience with a low price compared to console games but the scope of the experience, the breadth/depth of the content isn't the same as a high quality, console priced game like GTA, Red Dead Redemption, LA Noire, etc. 

      And when you are making, broad, deep games, economics of the project is critical. For example, GTA IV cost more than $100M to develop. In comparison, over the entire 3 year lifespan of the App Store, Apple has paid out $2.5 Billion. So a "console quality" game, of the scope that Take Two/Rockstar is used to making, developed from the ground for iOS, would have to have grab 1 out of every 25 dollars spent in the App Store just to break even, which doesn't seem likely to happen. And even that would take 3 years to recoup the costs.

      A more accurate comparison would of course be a portable "console quality" game like GTA Chinatown Wars. I don't know what it's original budget was when built from the ground up for the DS, but it's very likely a couple of million dollars, perhaps in the $10 million dollar range or a tenth of GTA IV. In comparison, Infinity Blade, which by all accounts is a very successful iOS game, heavily promoted by Apple themselves, has only made $10 million dollars. 

      In other words, if Take Two were to develop a portable "console quality" GTA specifically for iOS and it was a smash success like Infinity Blade, they would only break even. It is then very clear why Take Two would be hesitant in developing full featured, broad scope, deep content games for iOS. The alternative is to churn out smaller scope games like Infinity Blade or Call of Duty Zombies, which can still be high quality, but have more limited scope and risk diluting their franchise plus won't satisfy hardcore fans who will still be clamoring for a full GTA for iOS.

      Luckily, with the Apple A5's capabilities falling nicely in between the Nintendo 3DS and Sony Playstation Vita, we'll probably be seeing a nice stream of ports from those systems to iOS. That way the game development budget will be recouped by the dedicated portable gaming consoles allowing lower prices to be offered on iOS as was the case for Chinatown Wars. It may not make for the most optimized gameplay. but at least it means iOS gets full featured games while developers make their profit.

      • Anonymous

        Due to the hardware and interface differences and limitations, what constitutes a high quality gaming experience for a touchscreen tablet is going to be different than what constitutes high quality on a console portable, just like both of those devices have a lower bar to reach for "high quality" than a PC or console game requires.  So while I agree with what MidianGTX was saying when it comes to pricing and to an extent what you are saying, it's just not an apples to apples comparison to demand the level of depth and quality in a device where gaming is at best a casual use and the interface is a huge limitation for the type of games that form the AAA titles on more advanced platforms, versus a device where gaming is the primary intended use as in the case of console portables.

        It is also interesting that you mention ported games favorably, considering those are often the very opposite of a high quality experience due to their being designed for a different interface system than the one they are ported to (hence the name). No doubt we'll see plenty of them, and while there may be a few exceptions to the rule, based on the history of ported games, the expectation for those to be where one will find a high quality experience is perhaps odd.

      • ltcommander.data

        I mentioned ported games in my last paragraph, not specifically as an example of high quality games, but as a means of getting games that have broad/deep content onto iOS. Content is one aspect of a high quality game, but gameplay is of course another, which I do acknowledge may not be optimized for the platform when ported.

  • Mgs2ss

    The iPhone version is a port with a few bells and whistles?  I've played both the iPhone and DS versions, and there was a lot taken *out* of the iPhone version.  Unless there was an update that added some features (and the version I had was not capable of being updated, or at least not easily.  Hey, I spend $30 on the DS version.  I'm not paying an extra $10 for the game on my phone), I don't know how you can put that sentence there...

    • Anonymous

      The iPhone version looked way, way better than the DS version. Textures were cleaned up, resolutions were higher... I owned both and wouldn't hesitate to recommend the iOS one first. What was missing exactly?

      • htp24

        Agreed. I played it first on my ipod 2g and then replayed it on the 4G... I thought the controls were spot on. 

  • Anonymous

    I highly doubt "console quality" prices will ever scone the norm on this platform. And I'm not saying that because I only spend .99 cents on apps- hell, I've spend $13 in chaos rings for iPhone.

    That being said.. I think people would rather invest into something like OnLive for ipad rather than spend $40 on each mobile title.

    • SMP

      I have no problem paying $20-$30 for an ios game, in fact, I would love to see that. But I cant imagine those prices would work for the average ios/android owner either. But it would be interesting to see how Onlive would do on the ipad though the technical issues of streaming a game back and forth make me think otherwise.

    • Rjay

      I think most people are only interested in quick gaming on a tablet.  The idea of playing a 50-hour long RPG isn't so appealing for most people, or even imaginable to them.  There are some that don't mind it, but it's not "economically meaningful".

    • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

      "I highly doubt "console quality" prices will ever become the norm on this platform"

      Uh yeah. And we consider that a good thing.

  • Sang

    Economically meaningful. I don't think that bigger developers coming into the App Store understands that they can still make "economically meaningful" amounts of revenue with a lower price. The easy accessibility of the app store would cull the backlash of the amount of money that the developers make.

    In other words, any developer can still make a lot of money with a cheap tag on their apps on the App store.

    • Anonymous

      yeah it seemed strange to me that he juxtaposed selling to millions at a high price with selling cheap to a small audience, I think his experience is colored by releasing a crappy game into a highly competitive environment then not making that much money. GTA Chinatown Wars isn't even as good looking as gameloft's Gangstar games, which is embarrassing, regardless of which had more involved gameplay.

      • Guest

        Please don't ever dare compare a garbage made by gameloft against GTA:ctw. Graphics aside, Gangstar is pure TRASH!!!!

      • Shamu

        i agree gta on ipad/iphone is a complete pile of dog turd. i wanted to like it however its unplayable to me. the camera angle is retarded. the people bigger than trucks and boats its just shite.

  • Aaron Corsi

    To me that reads like a corporate middle-manager who is pissed off because people didn't want to buy his mediocre product. I bought Chinatown Wars and was totally disappointed and felt ripped off. If they aren't willing to put the effort in to make a better game than that then I say good riddance.

    • Anonymous

      Stop the press! The one person in the world who doesn't like Chinatown Wars thinks his opinion must be the correct one.

      • Aaron Corsi

        I doubt I'm the only one, the article states that the DS version wasn't well received and the entire article itself is lamenting the poor market performance of the iOS version. If I were the only person who didn't like the game it would have been a smash hit.

      • Aaron Corsi

        I doubt I'm the only one, the article states that the DS version wasn't well received and the entire article itself is lamenting the poor market performance of the iOS version. If I were the only person who didn't like the game it would have been a smash hit.

      • Anonymous

        The DS version was a critical success but a commercial dissapointment. That has nothing to do with the quality of the game but perhaps poor marketing, the general apathy to 3rd party mature games on Nintendo's platforms among other things.

      • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

        What does that even mean... ? I thought Nintendo consoles were "dying" for some hardcore games? What? Now they're apathetic?

      • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

        well spotted! if the DS version was bad, why port it? Lazy.

      • http://twitter.com/SPeitsch Sebastian Peitsch

        You are right. He's one of the 100 who actually bought the game. The others didn't even bother, like me.

        It's kind of hard to pretend that the game is oh so great when the guy who made it says that sales were too low.

      • http://twitter.com/dusser Rasmus Andersson

        He never said that the sales were low. What he said was that for a company that does business in the hundreds of millions and even in billions it's not going to be economically meaningful at the moment.

      • Vimy

        if sales were good he wood be happy.

        the real issue is few people bought this rehash. its not the price-point its the sales figures.

        not everybody understands the importance of staying relevant in market place. sometimes you make less, you can blame the market or you can blame yourself for not having what the market wanted.

        truth is, GTA is not the best fit for IOS and neither is take 2.
        takes vision and creativity and all they seam to have less are accountants and rehashed projects that are not very good. 

      • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

        Yeah, sales were too low. Obviously. Billions? Calm down. It's a small company that made only 180 million in revenue last quarter.  It's a tiny 1.29 billion dollar company.

        You know how much Square Enix is worth? 153 billion. 

      • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

        Why did they adopt a clunky DS game to the iPhone?! It's insulting.

      • Snipyro

        Uh, compared to the other downright horrible iOS games, I'd personally be glad we got something like Chinatown Wars. I didn't even like the game, but at least it's better than the majority of iOS games.

      • Anonymous

        The DS is owned primarily by children, and most children have parents who would never let their kids buy a GTA game. I'm not sure why they thought this was a good device for a GTA game anyway. It's like making a Fisher Price GTA line of toys...

  • htp24

    With EA and Gameloft constantly hacking their prices on their shoddy games (really, that's applicable only to Gameloft) to practically nothing to game the top selling charts every time a holiday rolls around, it makes perfect sense for big companies to not go after the iOS market. A first day release of a GTA like game won't sell a million copies at $60 a pop, or even $15 a pop, nor will it make a splash across gaming headlines (other than those specific to iOS gaming, of course, no offense TA). This isn't all that different from the Nintendo Wii, really. 

    • Anonymous

      it strikes me that it doesnt have to be that way though, it all depends on the developers. Infinity Blade has sold well, and it was really pretty limited in gameplay. If someone puts the time in to build a game that plays well on the iPad and is loaded with quality gameplay, they will find themselves selling millions.

  • HisDivineOrder

    Thing that bugs me about this is how badly this game controlled for my iPod Touch.  I mean, the controls really bugged me.  In that I didn't enjoy them.  Moreover, how much money could the company have invested into a port with such poorly done controls?  And the very fact that the game did poorly on two separate platforms (poorly as defined by his statements there) suggests to me perhaps that the value they thought they were providing was not provided.

    Fact is, selling a LOT more of a game cheaply can work as a model, provided you sell enough of them at a cost that is fair.  As it is, I don't think the return on the investment was given by this game at $10.  I think he's too entrenched in his old business model to realize that a new model is emerging where games are sold more cheaply, but the market is bigger and customers feel fine in buying more games, taking chances because the investment is so much less than on the console market.

    The problem is with consoles that gamers don't go buy a game on a whim if it's $60.  Or for handhelds at $40, 50.  Even $30's a stretch.  But you put a game between $1-10 and depending on the gamer, depending on the budget, and the word of mouth, you're going to find gamers who will take a chance.

    Moreover, I'd argue that the most sales happen for even Take-Two's games when their megahit super game hits $30.  This happened to GTA IV, Red Dead Redemption, AND it's happening now with LA Noire.  So if a game that costs as much as any of those to make sells its best at $30, imagine what a game with such a low budget as Chinatown done as poorly as this one was should do.  Perhaps he should branch out, do a real GTA for iPod Touch/iPad, then see what the results are.

    This one port of a commercially unsuccessful game on one platform doing poorly on iOS is not an indicator of a problem with the iOS market.  It could just as easily be a problem with the game.

    • Anonymous

      The controls worked really well after about 5-10 minutes of practice... letting something slip there? It's no worse than other games utilizing virtual controls and if you can cast your mind back to 1997 for a moment you'll remember that the original GTA often led to smashing your car into a wall/lamppost/other car every 15 seconds too. With the top-down GTA games it's always been more about mastering the game than the game's controls.

      • Anonymous

        So because Rockstar has terrible controls for driving and combat in all their games (and they definitely do, it's the worst parts of LA Noire), shoddy virtual controls on the iOS version should be something to be "gotten used to" and not color enjoyment of the game.  I think not.  If the game is poorer as a result of the controls, they should be called out on it and pushed to make them better. 

        No company deserves a sale just for making a game, and this article very clearly illustrates that they're expecting success by default these days, and blame the customer when their game doesn't hold up.

        (BTW, Different anon, and I didn't like Chinatown Wars either.)

      • Anonymous

        Terrible controls in all their games?  Really?  All of the 3D GTAs, especially number 4, control like a dream. 

        I will say while Chinatown Wars is only okay, I really wish it had more realistic driving physics and controls.  It feels to fast and silly for me to really get into, and driving over people just isn't very satisfying in CW.

      • Anonymous

        Perhaps they "control like a dream" to people who have experienced and gotten used to the evolution of terrible to mediore control design from Rockstar, but in comparison to the industry at whole, their combat and driving controls are abysmal.  And they don't give you the option of skipping on that "dream" throughout the entire game.  I fail missions more often because of their crummy driving model than because of something I did wrong, and often it takes two or three tries to keep after the suspect through all the insanely tight alleyways they send them down which aggravates the issue.  Of course, this is my opinion, but I doubt you'll find a single industry gaming review saying they're at the top of the field in those sections of play.

  • Anonymous

    $1 is way too low. There are a ton of games underselling themselves in the app store. I wouldnt mind having to pay say $10 for all the games that are at the $0.99 price point. And yeah, I spend long amounts of time on my devices so the whole app store expirience is very, very cheap for a premium device

    • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

      Before GTA I played the Gangstarr games... I didn't even bother finishing the missions cuz they were so boring. These 'run around punching people and stealing cars' games were a fad, just let them die.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Grant-Butler/529725117 Grant Butler

    The problem with selling on iTunes is the interface is so bad that everything gets lost and never gets any limelight. I agree unless the app is 59p then people don't want to buy it because they still see these games on these devices as cheap throw away games. 

    Smart Phones and Tablets need to change their image before games become meaningful on them, right now they're just what you play Angry Birds on like what Snake was to old phones. 

  • Rjay

    Personally I'm glad Take-Two aren't interested in iOS gaming.  I'm also not fond of EA and Gameloft games, as they tend to be ports or copy-cats of existing games on other platforms.

    In the end, I much prefer the indie-developed titles from developers of games like Battleheart, Tilt To Live, and Real Racing 2.  They, at least, care about the platform and are interested in making games that are fun and therefore will sell and make them a good profit.

  • Paul White

    Don't release cut down crap for such a capable device.  It will sell better.

  • http://twitter.com/SPeitsch Sebastian Peitsch

    Considering the iPad is a platform that brings gaming to people who never ever owned a game console I think this is an additional market. Take 2 can stick to regular consoles, let the people who know how to deal with the iOS platform make the games.

    I doubt we need the big conglomerates to make the games. Let's face it - some other company will make games and Take 2 or better the company who own them will buy that studio who made that successful iOS game and then they'll label that studio "Take 2 Australia" and all of a sudden Take 2 is making iOS games.

    I mean who says that the people who made this game had mobile console experience in the first place? I doubt that Quality always begets Quality no matter what. You have to judge every game on its own.

    • http://twitter.com/dusser Rasmus Andersson

      But...there is no company that owns Take-Two.

    • Andiron

      That is a good point.  Even if the major game publishers don't end up making games on iOS then I'm assuming that where there is a void in the marketplace - *someone* will step in and fill that void, make their money, and show how its done.  After all, if the market place truly is not "economically meaningful" then I think that companies like EA and Gameloft would have probably figured that out a while ago?

    • Anonymous

      They're also making a mistake when they think that tablet computers are "ubiquitous" in the market.  While it's true that Apple has sold a ton of the things, the people buying them are not all gamers in the sense that they consider gamers. 

      In my family, my father and mother both have an iPad, and myself and two of my three brothers have an iPad (I gave the youngest my old iPad 1 when the second came out).  There are no games on my father's iPad as far as I am aware. He uses it for web surfing and Netflix while on work trips.  My mother has a free version of sudoku and Fruit Ninja.  She plays Fruit Ninja religiously and has no interest thus far in other games.  My brother has a handful of games because he used to play consoles a lot.  I mostly see him playing Civilization and Fruit Ninja however.  The only people out of 5 in the family to have a large number of games are myself and my youngest brother, and he only has a lot because he inherits everything I buy.

      I cannot imagine this situation is dissimilar across the board.  People buy iPads for different reasons, and I expect the majority have no interest in the games section of the store, especially if it has a $10+ price tag on the game.  This is a reality the bigger publishers are going to have to deal with if they want to entertain the premium market instead of going for bulk sales at a lower price point.

  • http://twitter.com/dusser Rasmus Andersson

    Here is the thing: what Take-Two does is huge budget, high quality console titles. As a company, they're not well suites for the tablet and phone market. And that is OK. Not everyone has do to everything, and what he is saying here is sound: like Apple, Take-Two should focus on what the do best and that is indeed, very big budget productions.

    Put a different way: how Take-Two does business does not work in the tablet and phone market at the moment and as they're successful there is no reason for them to change any more than it is necessary for Apple to start making 300 dollar netbooks.

  • http://www.caffeinemonstersoftware.com Mo

    While Chinatown Wars didn't perform up to its financial expectations, it's worth noting that's it's a really great game. The Metacritic for every version of CW scored 90+

    You say that there's "no doubt at all that the App Store can provide in this arena" (ie: making money), but success is a relative term. Consider that GTA IV made $500 million in its first week. For an investment estimated at $100 million, that's amazing. And that was just the first week. For Take2, it's absolutely true that the AppStore is not "economically meaningful".
    (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Theft_Auto_IV#Commercial_success)

    It's going to take a different business model to develop a portable-console-quality game (in terms of content, not just graphics) for iOS. I think Infinity Blade shows that it *is* possible, but even IB doesn't have the same kind of budget (or content) of the finest games on portable handheld consoles.

  • Asd

    “At the end of the day, we are interested in creating economic value,
    and what we intend to do is make something and sell it to millions and
    millions of people, and sell it at a high price. You don’t want to spend
    lots and lots of money to make something you are going to sell to a
    small amount of people at a low price.”

    This is exactly the mentality that is systematically destroying the industry. It's one thing to strive for profit. It's another thing to be greedy to the point where you fail to see that the business decisions you're making are cannibalizing the industry in which you're trying to make money.

    I heavily heavily applaud indie devs pricing their games cheap to undercut these goons. These execs have no idea what gaming is, where it's been, where it's going, nor what separates good games from bad ones. Then they scratch their head when their product doesn't sell and blame a scapegoat like piracy. Pathetic.

    • http://twitter.com/dusser Rasmus Andersson

      Are you seriously telling me that Take-Two is the problem of the gaming industry? With Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption, L.A. Noire, NBA 2K10, Bioshock, Mafia, Max Payne, Civilization as their games, of which several is new IP:s? Really? Please.

      Complaining about this is a stupid as complaining about that Apple doesn't do TVs.

      • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

        Are you trying to be ironic? http://macdailynews.com/2011/06/21/apple-to-enter-tv-business-later-this-year-says-former-executive/

  • Chickdigger802

    Don't see what's everyone is complaining about. Take 2 is basically saying that they spend too much time and money on chinatown wars for the amount they made back. Scale back the scope of the project is the better way to make money on app store.

    I'm pretty sure the average indie games doesn't come close to the cost of developing a GTA title...

    • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

      The 'complaining' is from all the people who saw this game and didn't buy it cuz it looks like derivative crap with last gen graphics (wassup, DS). While Take2 is whining that they didn't sell much of these, it might not be iOS's fault. Make a better game. Get some new ideas. They've milked this franchise enough, and that's why we're bored of playing it.

      You know, new ideas? Like Square releasing 15 year old games with updated graphics on iOS? 😛

      • Chickdigger802

        Odd, I thought this game was quite good. The graphics aren't that great. But the amount of gameplay packed in this game is unheard of even for ds/psp games.

        Last time I checked this was still ranked as one of the highest scoring ds/psp games on metacritic/gamerankings.

      • Anonymous

        iOS version has been stripped of a lot of features compared to the PSP/DS variant.

      • Anonymous

        A successful game doesn't have to be overly complex nor does it have to take a lot of resources. Look at Tiny Wings for example..

      • Decoy Octopus

        Tiny wings is for casual gamers. To me it's shallow gameplay and 99 cent junk at best.

      • Anonymous

        I only used Tiny Wings as a example as it is the opposite of CW in development time, cost, market success and end cost to the consumer. As shallow as it is, I can think of worst games to kill time. Perhaps a better example would have been Infinity Blade..

        The point is Take Two ported over a game from handhelds with hardware controls and somehow expect it to sell. IMO touch controls don't work that good with these types of action games. Perhaps if Take Two decided to design a game with touch screen in mind they would be more successful. I know I would be willing to pay more if the quality of the game warranted and it sounds like I'm not alone in that regard.

    • Anonymous

      While I would agree if this WAS a new game but this came out a bit later than the DS/PSP version. Most likely the majority of people that wanted the game got it already.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marshall-Pope/100000602530531 Marshall Pope

    Im shocked...they released a game on the market a year after they had already released it on every other platform short of calculators and had to compete against others in its genre at lower price points.  Anyone else really not care if the bigger developers get on board or not?  I've found enough smaller devs that are making quality fun and original stuff that I really dont miss the big name rehashed stuff.

    • Anonymous

      This had only seen release on the DS and PSP. I'm not sure where that 'every other platform' comment came from. Also, it's funny how you whine about pricing while conveniently forgetting that iPhone CW was priced up to 5 times less than the cost on the other platforms you scornfully refer to. 

      • Anonymous

        It is a bit on the pricey side. It's $17 to get CW new for the DS or PSP. You get more content and hardware controls as well..

  • http://twitter.com/21tigermike Michael A. Robson

    Sorry guys, but Gangstarr/GTA games and the like are just boring. It's 2011. Try something new.

    • Noman

      Dude, we get it.  You don't like GTA games.  That's fine, but a lot of us disagree so please stop acting like your opinion is the only one that matters.

      • Anonymous

        I don't think Michael wants the series to die but I'm inclined to agree with him. They've been rehashing the same game for more than I would like. I've played every version of GTA on release and GTA4 was pretty underwhelming. It seems like all the developers are just creating sequels for existing franchises. Would love to see something new..

  • Vimy

    it all comes down to the same thing,
    dont hate the playa, hate the game.

    EA, which has kicked Take 2 rear since day one, has no issue with IOS, there Montreal office is dedicated to it.Neither does capcom, bethesda-ID Gameloft etc etc etc

    Take 2  simply cant compete and considering the statements made by the executive, its not hard to understand why. They don't want to invest in new things, They fail to see oportunities for cross marketing, advertising or even just building a loyal fan base. If they cant make a fast buck on an old port, they dismiss the market rather than realise there mistake.

    Unfortunately those who are to scarred to evolve tend to go extinct.

    If this game had been well marketed, at 99 cents it would have made a killing if it had sold. . It simply didnt sell. 200 million plus user and growing, just in north america, its in more homes than consoles, higher income device, this is an ideal market place for innovators but lackluster leadership will flounder.

    This is an MBA move, they are so good at taking succesful entrepreurship and make then insolvent

  • Mark

    Of course it's hard for the company to be profitable with "cheap" apps, when his target salary and bonus each year is $6M, not including many millions more in shares and options. That's why he needs to sell games at prices the marketplace does not support. Go ask Rovio (Angry Birds) or the Tiny Wings developer what their budgets are compared to his salary...

  • Anonymous

    Its called a sale... I have never seen this game put on sale (i could have missed it) and i am sure (if there was one) it was still between $5-7. Somebody is convinced that their game is better then it is. I would never pay $5-7 or $10 for that matter for this game. I can pick up a game just like this for $3 or sometimes free (carjackstreets).

  • Noman

    If people are not willing to pay one fourth of original retail for one of the best-reviewed handheld games of the generation, maybe it's just not profitable to play games like this on this platform.

  • http://www.meadiciona.com/charles_anjos Charles Albert

    Console games and mobile games are two different markets. Can we please can this lame discussion, i'm getting bored.

    • Anonymous

      Then maybe leave?

  • bennehftw

    Too all those people who say that have no problem paying 20+ dollars for an IOS game and I'm sure many other ppl can say that that aren't on Touch Arcade, But I bet when the cards are down the only way you'd spend all that money on an IOS game is if its heavily reviewed positively. As with most of the IOS gaming population.

    I'm not saying its not worth it if its worth it, but that the IOS population needs to have that sort of security blanket in order to purchase such "high end" content. Otherwise they're going to look at all the other purchases they could've made with that money.

  • Jimmö

    Chinatown Wars for iPhone is crap! Been a long time since I saw such bad graphics on my iphone 4.

    • http://twitter.com/Kamuro Kamuro

      The game is great, but I hoped they could do better. I don't get how you can't make a decent amount of money with a good GTA game on the App Store. Give the people value and they will buy it even when it's 10-15€/20$.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-West/1459215646 John West

    Take Two is becoming the dinosaur that's about to become extinct. The reality is that developers are discovering they can cut out the middleman and self publish the game themselves. Why should developers work for those blood sucking parasites when they can be successful on their own? Sooner or later, these game publishers will have no game to publish. Innovative game coming out of App Store and Google market place will eventually drive them all out of business because they will not be able to make the "kind of money" they expect, so they will focus on "safe bet" i.e. sequels and boring tried and true formulas.

    Talk about "making the kind of money they expect"... ofcourse they are not making the kind of money they expect - a mega-corporation filled with useless accountants and "business managers", "marketing managers" and "HR managers" that leech off the hard work of real developers who produce real work - when everyone wants a piece of cake but only few people are making the cake, of course its not enough to go around! ITS SIMPLE !!

    So the only eventuality is that developers will make the cake and eat it themselves.

  • http://twitter.com/themyst themyst

    To be perfectly honest, iOS gaming is probably the best bang-for-your-buck solution out there today.  I still remember dropping $49.99 on NES games and $29.99 on Gameboy games back in the 80's growing up.  Heck, I remember being beyond upset dropping that much on Hydlide on NES.  Just like the App Store, no refunds.  I'd believe adjusting for inflation, $49.99 would be around $90.00 in 2011 dollars or so.  

    The whole problem is the ecosystem of the App Store revolves around quick impulse purchases, where games are quickly downloaded then disposed of for the most part.

    Back on topic, I would love to see some great high-cost games with for iOS that's clearly indicated as such when purchasing.  I am growing sick of the growing number of apps in the App Store which scream "free" or "cheap" yet are so inundated with in-app purchases to stretch the de facto cost of a title.  In many cases, after purchasing the extras for a particular game, the total cost can approach $20.00 in some cases.  Maybe I'm a dinosaur, but when I purchase a game, I expect the WHOLE game after paid for it.   

  • Bess

    I would easily pay $20 if Nintendo created a new Zelda game exclusively for the iPad.
    Most things in the store right now are only worth $1, though.