During the MKM Partners Entertainment, Leisure and Internet Conference, Take-Two Interactive Software Chief Executive Officer Strauss Zelnick talked more about the upcoming Red Dead Redemption 2.
Zelnick mentioned that he was very pleased by how much demand there is for the Red Dead franchise, the views for the reveal trailer were massive, and much greater than expected.
“I think the anticipation is enormous. You just got a sense of what it looks like. It’s absolutely stunning.”
Zelnick then reminisced on the first Red Dead Redemption, mentioning that conventional wisdom indicated that a western wouldn’t work in the United States. The company decided to take a different point of view, that very occasionally westerns capture the imagination of the public, and Red Dead Redemption did. The times were right for that.
He also added that now the times are right for a “big, sprawling, optimistic view of America again.”
Zelnick continued mentioning that there is “incredible emotional depth” to the trailer we saw, and that we can expect that “there will be great story elements and great gameplay elements.”
Speaking more in general about Rockstar, he explained that as a company, Take-Two seeks the highest quality in the business, and Rockstar seeks perfection, and perfection is a very high standard. Since perfection can’t be reached, there is always an opportunity to do more. That’s a time-consuming and expensive exercise, but when they get it right (and Rockstar gets it right over and over again), it’s obviously very profitable.
Grand Theft Auto V and Grand Theft Auto Online, according to Zelnick, are a standard bearer not just for Rockstar and Take-Two, but for the industry as a whole, and they are a nearly perfect experience. That creates pressure on the creative teams, but Zelnick feels that it’s a welcome pressure, and Take-Two has the appetite and economic strength to support that kind of creative vision.
The company not only enables, but actually encourages its creative teams to pursue their passions and push the envelope. They’re not very conservative. They may be so economically, but when it comes to creative matters, they’re “cowboys.”
Red Dead Redemption 2 will release on PS4 and Xbox One on Fall 2017.