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Rockstar opens up on decision to keep GTA5 this-gen

Houser bout that.

There's a new Grand Theft Auto game around the corner so the Rockstar heavyweights are being wheeled out for the media. Among them, Dan Houser, the big cheese.

Houser sat down with Japanese magazine Famitsu and explained why GTA5 was kept as a current-generation game.

"Rockstar is a content company, not a hardware company. We use the technology we have to create content, and we try not to let ourselves get beholden to the hardware. The fact that hardware's so mature right now is exactly why we're able to go on to the next level," Houser told Famitsu, translated by Polygon.

"Grand Theft Auto 4 was our first attempt at a new platform and HD visuals, so the first part of development was seriously difficult. Now we know what the hardware's capable of so it's become a lot easier to move things along and a lot more fun, too. GTA: San Andreas came out at the peak of the PlayStation 2's cycle and we put out a really good game thanks to that.

"Here, you heard what Houser said?"

"All the best games for a console come out at the end of the lifecycle, right?" he added. "So now's the best timing of all."

Now I don't know if Houser knows this, but choosing this generation also means Rockstar has a much larger, matured installed base to sell to. I just assumed he'd be dead keen to reclaim the record-breaking sales crown Grand Theft Auto surrendered to Call of Duty. But perhaps numbers aren't important to him after all.

It took Grand Theft Auto 4 over four years to amass 25 million sales - a number touted by GameInformer in its GTA5 cover issue of the magazine. In its first week, GTA4 shifted 6 million copies.

The best selling Call of Duty game, Black Ops, passed 25 million sales last August. Black Ops sold 5.6 million copies in one day when released in the autumn of 2010. Weekly sales weren't numbered but they were estimated to be around 10 million.

A new video of Grand Theft Auto 5 will be released today at 4pm, and caps off a week of new GTA5 information. We know the game has three protagonists and we've seen screenshots of what it will look like.

Houser told Famitsu the story will be "deeper and more complex" than ever before as well as one you've "never experienced not just in games but in any other media". He shared a bit of information on two of the game's three characters: Michael, who's serious, middle-aged and bored; and Trevor, who's bipolar and "totally crazy".

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Robert Purchese

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Bertie is a synonym for Eurogamer. Writes, podcasts, looks after the Supporter Programme. Talks a lot.