'Grand Theft Auto' hauls in $800 million in 1 day

The latest installment of the violent video game is a jaw-dropping success.

By Kim Peterson Sep 18, 2013 6:21PM
Screenshot from Grand Theft Auto 5 (© Rockstar Games)We knew "Grand Theft Auto V" would bring in some big money, but $800 million in one day? Makes those five years of development worth it.

The latest installment in the violent and controversial video game series hit stores on Tuesday. The $60 game saw such strong preorders that analysts expected it to clear $1 billion in sales within the first month. With worldwide sales topping $800 million in the first day alone, that goal is within reach much sooner.

In fact, the game blew away the previous one-day sales record set by "Call of Duty: Black Ops II," The Los Angeles Times reports. That game, from Activision Blizzard (ATVI), only brought in $500 million in its first 24 hours. Mere peanuts.

"Call of Duty: Black Ops II" hit $1 billion in sales in 15 days, so you can place your bets as to when "GTA V" hits that same milestone. Friday, perhaps?

About 8,300 stores in North America stayed open past midnight to sell the game, The Times reports. And there was something of a "grand theft sickout" the next day, as twentysomething gamers mysteriously caught the same illness and called in sick to work.

"GTA V" cost at least $270 million to build and market, according to news reports, though developer Rockstar Games has not confirmed that amount. The game has been five years in the making.

We're now at the point where we're ranking video-game sales along with tentpole box-office performances. If and when "GTA V" crosses that $1-billion threshold, it would be equal, at least on revenue terms, to "Iron Man 3" and "Despicable Me 2."

The game is notorious for its ultraviolent depiction of life on the streets as well as its misogynist themes, but that hasn't dampened its critical acclaim. IGN calls it a "bitingly relevant commentary on contemporary, post-economic crisis America." Game Informer says it's "filled with beautiful scenery, a wealth of activities and the promise of fortune."

The game comes just two months before the arrival of the Sony PlayStation 4 (SNE) and the Microsoft Xbox One (MSFT), USA Today notes. (Microsoft owns and publishes moneyNOW, an MSN Money site.)

In that sense, it is the swan song of the current generation of gaming platforms. "In many ways it's a game that is only possible to produce at the end of a console generation, as development has taken more than half a decade to complete," Geoff Keighley, host of GameTrailers TV, told the newspaper.

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Sep 18, 2013 10:26PM
Rockstar  Makes The Best Games in The World Hands Down!!! Many Thanks For Countless Hours Of Incredible Fun!!! You Guys Truly Are ROCKSTARS!!!!
Sep 18, 2013 11:18PM
And they can have my money when it comes out on PC.
Sep 18, 2013 7:53PM
When companies make great games they will be rewarded with lot of money. If they stop making so many crap games and make fewer better games like GTA 5 why would be much more profitable
Sep 19, 2013 2:26AM
I took the rest of the week off to play GTA5. My wife is pissed!
Sep 19, 2013 2:44AM

I have noticed a lot of hate pouring out from the "undereducating masses" so let me fill you in. Most of the games violence is by choice, just like real life. Even when you are forced to shoot in the missions, you are doing so against other bad people. You can get away from cops without shooting or killing them. You can actually choose to never kill or hurt anyone and just ride around the whole town and counrty on a bicycle, skydive, play golf, or do yoga. And for you pet lovers out there you can walk your dog, teach him tricks, and play fetch with him.


Is the game adult? Very much so. But like "the real world" for adults, you can choose to be the person you want to be in the game. It is the sole reason the game is so good. The options to just do things. If I choose to play tennis for 4 hours and then run over every white women I see with my car. Be lucky most of the people playing it do it in a fantasy world where it is obviously ridiculous.

Sep 19, 2013 2:16AM
Yes, back to los santos. Bout friggin time.
Sep 19, 2013 2:34AM
Video games, movies and tv shows do not cause society ills! Not spending time with your kids, not making sure they have proper supervision and not taking responsibility for your actions and teaching your kids to blame everyone else for their problems is one big  reason for societies ills

I am a mom of an 18 year old boy and a 20 year old girl.  I have no problems with games like grand theft auto and others of its kind.  I watch my kids play the games and play with them.  When my kids were younger and even now they are great for opening up discussions on life values, real vs unreal Proper vs improper reactions to situations and even gave me the opportunity to discuss sex, birth control and safe sex in a non judgmental way and whats going on with their life.  The problem with any game is when parents don't take the time to sit down occasionally and play the games with their kids using them to find out where your kids head is.  For kids to grow up great they need their parents to interact with them ,  talk to them and teach them right from wrong without talking down to them. 
I also found that games like grand theft auto helped my son work through his anger when his dad 4 years ago left us for another women and moved to Texas. He worked though his hurt and anger long before his sister did, she doesn't like video games.  Being disabled playing the games help me work though the aggravation and frustration of being severely limited in what I can do.

For you all that think the past was better , you need to read better history books non water down fantasy's you have been reading. Life before the 1900's was brutal ruff and people found many ways to torture, brutalize and kill others. And trust me Hitler didn't own X box , PS3 or a Wii.

in other words the way we treat each other and interact with our kids and how much time we spend with them( I don't mean and or yelling at  them) is what affects how violent a society become if you want a less violent society stop passing the buck stop being unreasonable and  high handed with your kids and others Spend time having fun with them don't leave them alone with out supervision, watch tv and movies with them , play video games with them and actually talk about what you like or dislike about the game you are playing or the movie/ tv show you are watching. You will be amazed what slips out of your kid while you are playing, you might learn something special about your kid.

Sep 18, 2013 10:47PM
Sep 19, 2013 1:18AM
Sep 19, 2013 3:21AM
Some people in this world are just plain buzz kills. 'This is not a gamers game' What exactly does a 'gamer' play? Games that only those who classify themselves as that so called 'gamer' prefer? Truth be told I consider myself to be a gamer and I love the GTA series. I also play a variety of other amazing games such as Fallout, Mass Effect, Halo, Portal, Elder Scrolls, Assassins Creed, Half-Life etc. I've also been gaming for the past 23 years, since I was 3. So yes, I've played a lot of what's out there. Just because it doesn't fit the mold of what one person thinks makes a 'good game' does not make it so. I've also heard a lot of slack about GTA degrading women. I'm a female, I appreciate the game and I don't feel as I've been degraded at all. Why? For one, its a video game. Also, I am not a stripper or prostitute, who morally degrade themselves already. For the parents, don't buy your child the game, its that simple. I'm sad that I have to wait for another two weeks to buy it, but I know it will be worth the wait!
Sep 19, 2013 1:48AM
violent its a game pull your head out of your asses and get real
Sep 19, 2013 2:18AM
I find the title more violent than the game it self...
Sep 19, 2013 3:00AM
Rockstar Games Such as "GTA IV", "Max payne 3 and " GTA V" are the Most of the Awesome Game, even the kids play it. and everyone likes it, So I will BUY IT THIS ROCKSTAR GAME IF IT COMES OUT! And I hope they make the... Grand theft auto VI"
Sep 19, 2013 9:14AM
Over the years, I have purchased an large variety of games. From Cards games, sport games, fighting games, etc. My conclusion after years of playing all types, there is a real danger here. Just because YOU can't see the potential problems hardly means there isn't one. There has to be a long term effect of playing violent games on some level in psyche of some kids. It's simply no way around that.

Look at the effect of today's Rap music and how our kids behave these day. Just look at the rapid decline in morals. What's on TV, all the Reality TV crap, more violence, and the internet BS of Twitter and Facebook and more. So sure, go right ahead, stick you head in the SAND, and ignore the FACT that our Kids are Knee Deep in a cesspool of declining Morals.
Sep 19, 2013 1:47PM

"twentysomething gamers"...


Keep it up folks, higher- education is over- rated.

Sep 19, 2013 3:08AM
I am a emergency medicine doctor.. I have seen over 3000 people die . I have seen every kind of horrible trauma and suffering and have no desire to play a game that reminds me of the suffering and sadness that we as humans have to face. People who long to play these games dont understand the tragedy of real violence and the toll it takes on the human spirit. If they did they would be doing everything possible to make the world a better place. Humanity is facing great danger with global warming, war and countless other problems that threaten our own existence. Life and survival are real yet people prefer to hide in their little worlds of fantasy. We need leaders and hero's strong in spirit to stand up and defend this world. Our media would have us thinking the biggest tragedy in the world is what is going on in some hollywood stars life, or some recent shooting, but the real problems are much larger and much more dangerous and are present because humanity has become lazy stupid and apathetic. We have opened are arms and embraced violence and evil it permeates are culture in music news media and games. Dont fool yourself into thinking this is all innocent. Words and thoughts carry power. Awake from your stupor and fight back we are at war with things that can destroy our own existence our childrens futures. An indian once told a child that  there is a good wolf and a bad wolf in all of us. And the child asked which one is stronger and the indian said it depends on which one you feed. Dont feed the bad wolf
Sep 19, 2013 2:58AM
and that is wrong with humanity these days, esp in the good ol' US of A.  We GLORIFY violence, worship it, idolize it and worship thugs and criminals and corrupt people even in video games. It is a sad and pathetic sign of the times.  To say this doesn't roll over into how people live their daily lives is naive.  
Sep 18, 2013 10:40PM
glad i was the 1st to get my copy here :)
GTA San Andreas kicked 4ss the ones that followed it not so much. I hope this ones better. 
Sep 20, 2013 11:55AM
It should be banned, far to violent. There is simply no need for such vile and reprehensible violence. Kids will try desperately to get into this game.. the dumbing down of America continues and we all wonder why schools are getting shot up, places of business, etc.. its bad enough we have to read about the real violence taking place in the streets of America, we don't need a video game shoving it in our faces. Some things are just wrong. We are a violent people, a video game sell out like we see with violent games only enforces my opinion.
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