The writing was pretty much on the wall for a long time as far as the success of Red Dead Redemption 2 was concerned. Within days of its launch, it proved to be the massive success most had expected it would be, shipping 17 million units worldwide within just 8 days, a figure the first Red Dead Redemption hadn’t been able to hit with eight years on the market, before going on to end 2018 as the highest selling game of the year in the United States.
In their recent financial report for Q3 (October to December) of financial year 2018-19, Take-Two Interactive provided another update on the performance of Red Dead Redemption 2, reporting that to date, 23 million copies of the games have been shipped to retailers worldwide (note that these are sold-in figures, not sold-through figures- shipments, not sales). This has led to Take-Two Interactive reporting extremely healthy financial results, which have actually exceeded their projections, delivering $1.57 billion in net bookings (as compared to projections for $1.45 billion at most), and revenue of $1.248 billion (exceeding projections for $1.15 billion), with gross profit being $350 million in total.
Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick brought up the impressive success of Red Dead Redemption 2, stating that the firm, as well as developers and publishing label Rockstar, are very pleased with how it’s been performing, also bringing up its achievement as the most successful entertainment launch in history. “The title shipped more in its first 15 days than the first Red Dead Redemption shipped in eight years, and it has the highest opening weekend of any title in entertainment history of any sort – $725 million,” said Zelnick (via GamesIndustry). “So we do feel really good about it. Naturally, it’s doing much better than expected and we had high expectations. It is very hard to call where we’ll go from here, other than to say we’re thrilled with what it has achieved so far.”
Red Dead Redemption 2 is, apparently, also doing very well for itself on the online side of things. Red Dead Online is, according to Zelnick currently performing better than GTA Online was at this stage of its lifecycle post-launch.
“What’s really exciting is that during December, combined monthly active users of Grand Theft Auto Online and Red Dead Online took Rockstar to a new record,” said Zelnick. “We feel great about it. Obviously the experiences are a work in progress, and there will be a lot more content to come. But in terms of comparing where Grand Theft Auto Online was in terms of engagement at this stage of the game, versus where Red Dead Online at this stage in the game, Red Dead Online has more engagement, is doing better and has a lot more early traction. Which we think is very encouraging.”
NBA 2K19 was another strong performer for Take-Two Interactive, with the firm now expecting it to outsell NBA 2K18. Civilization 6 for the Nintendo Switch was also brought up, which, by all accounts, “significantly exceeded expectations”, as per Zelnick. “We felt good about the platform and we put the titles on Switch that we felt were going to perform well,” said Zelnick. “We are excited about continuing to support the Switch for the right kind of properties.”
Owing to the strong performances of multiple titles, Take-Two Interactive has increased projections for the full financial year, which ends on March 31st, and expects to generate revenue in the $2.66 to $2.71 billion range (up from their previously anticipated $2.55 to $2.65 billion).