How Rockstar’s Recent History Tells Us When GTA V Will Release

Since the GTA V announcement back in October, people have been frantically trying to guess when the next installment in Rockstar’s crime drama franchise will be unleashed upon the gaming world. I’ve seen prediction dates from 2012 to 2014, but where’s the real answer? Until Rockstar tells us, there’s no way to know, but that doesn’t mean I can’t do a little prognostication of my own, right?

I did some research into jolly ol’ Rockstar and found an interesting pattern, one that may lead us right to the day Grand Theft Auto V will see the light of day. Follow with me here:

Starting in 2010, Rockstar has released each of its major games (DLC expansions not included, sorry Undead Nightmare) in the same week: the third week of May. Red Dead Redemption was March 18th, 2010 (delayed from April 27th, mind you); L.A. Noire was May 17th, 2011, and the upcoming Max Payne 3 is May 15th, 2012 (delayed from March 2012).

That third week in May, man…that third week in May.

If we go back two years prior to Rockstar’s 2008 big release, Grand Theft Auto IV, we see that it came out April 29th. In 2009, Rockstar only saw GTA: Chinatown Wars (March 17th) and the first GTAIV DLC, The Lost and the Damned (February 17th).

Taking those five years into consideration:

-2009 is right out, because Rockstar didn’t have a AAA console release. Portable GTA and DLC to their biggest seller is important, but I wouldn’t call it a giant AAA line-outside-the-game-store release.

-2008’s GTA IV is the only different release date, three weeks earlier than the rest of the games.

-Since 2010, there has been a pretty consistent pattern, even if Rockstar didn’t intend for it. The delays in development, however, show that they reeeeeally like releasing in that particular calendar week.

So what does this mean? It could mean nothing, and that Rockstar had a few years of symmetry before it bucks the trend and releases their big game in the holiday rush like everyone else.  However, I think it could be a telling window into when we’ll finally be able to play Grand Theft Auto V.

Variables are always possible, but don’t be surprised if you’re driving the streets of Los Santos on May 14th, 2013. It falls into the current pattern, it’s a time of year that’s virtually barren for new titles, so competition is non-existent (this year being a definite exception, as Max Payne goes head-to-head with Diablo III), and it’s already proven to be successful for Rockstar in the past. Seems like a no-brainer to me.



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