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Xbox 360 'owns' the GTA IV launch, according to Microsoft

9:49 AM on 02.08.2008

Jim Sterling

Former Reviews Editor

There's no denying the power of the Grand Theft Auto series. Rockstar's controversial franchise is one of the most recognizable and well-known brands in modern gaming, and its next installment is going to be unquestionably huge. For Microsoft, Grand Theft Auto IV is not just being treated as an important game, it's clearly being treated as one of the most crucial of 2008.

Microsoft's Shane Kim has recently commented on the impact GTA's had on Sony hardware in the past -- most notably the revelation that was GTA III on the PS2 -- and how Microsoft is looking to harness that impact for itself by making sure that the Xbox 360 is seen as the definitive home of Liberty City. Kim is confident that Microsoft already "owns" GTA IV, but that gamers need to realize it.

"We already own it, I believe, from a content standpoint, because we have the exclusive episodes ... but we have to make sure the customers know that ... if you look back, again, to the role of GTA III and what that played in terms of PS2's development - in Europe as well, because it was huge in Europe. That's a great opportunity for us. We need to take advantage of it."
Kim admits that Microsoft's job isn't going to be a cakewalk, and recognized Sony's potential to steal some of the glory for itself, especially in Europe, where Sony products have always been successful. Kim realizes that if MS becomes complacent, the potential is there for gamers to simply associate GTA with Sony based on past experiences and not buy it for the less traditional Xbox. Kim is determined, however, to let the people know his opinion that the 360 is where the "greater experience" can be had. What say you, the people themselves? Are you getting this for the 360 or PS3, and do you think downloadable episodic content is key to the "ownership" of Grand Theft Auto?
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