Many people had an extra hop in their step yesterday after the announcement of Grand Theft Auto V, despite the fact that the game was an inevitability. Of course, this didn’t stop industry analysts from running their special game-counting analysm machines (that’s what it is, right?) and making hefty predictions about degree of the upcoming title’s undoubtedly rampant success.
This particular report comes from Sterne Agee’s Arvind Bhatia, who estimated that first-year sales of GTA V could range between 20 and 25 million units, a healthy increase from the company’s previous prediction of 15-to-17 million.
Bhatia said that the prediction could be on the safe side, as GTA IV sold 17 million in its first year, and current install bases for the PS3 and 360 are 125 percent larger than they were in 2008. Putting forth a scenario in which 90 percent of GTA IV buyers picked up a copy of GTA V, and if another 10 of the incremental install base did the same, then GTA V would have no problem surpassing 20 million units.
I’m always weary of analysts throwing out numbers, but this one seems plausible. The GTA franchise is a phenomenon, and with a larger install base that may possibly include the Wii U, you don’t have to stretch your imagination too far to reach such a plateau.