Open-world crime simulator Grand Theft Auto V has been blasting through sales records like they were digital prostitutes, clocking up $800 million in sales in its first day of release, which translates to around 14 million units being sold. With release still to come in major territories like Japan and Brazil, experts are predicting that the game will crack the $1 billion mark by the end of the month. With an estimated budget of around $200 million, the returns will eclipse those of all but the biggest Hollywood blockbuster movies.
In comparison, its predecessor Grand Theft Auto IV sold 3.6 million copies on it’s first day, and took almost a year to reach the 13 million sales mark.
Strauss Zelnick, who sounds like a character from the game, but is actually chairman of GTAV publisher Take-Two Interactive Software, said in a statement: “All of us at Take-Two are thrilled with the initial response to Grand Theft Auto V. Once again, the team at Rockstar Games have outdone themselves, setting the entertainment industry’s new standard for creativity, innovation, and excellence.” A spokesperson for everyone who has the game said: “Oh my god this is siiiiiiiick”.
While the game has (like all the other GTA titles it its 16 year history) stirred up its share of controversy, with its gratuitous depictions of violence, sex and drugs sparking debate from parents groups, it has received near universal critical acclaim, sitting alongside Super Mario Galaxy 1 and 2 as one of the best games of all time on rating aggregator Metacritic.
Possibly the best thing about the GTAV release, however, is the mental image of the Geography Teachers Association of Victoria scratching their heads as to why their website received such a massive spike in hits this week.
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