Sunday, February 24th, 2008
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Zelnick tells EA, Challenge This! *Update*

GTAGaming.com - General News | @ 10:59 PM MDT | By Kodo
Update: After reading Herb Greenberg's outlook on Take2's rejection, one has to re-examine if Zelnick cares about GTAIV more than money. Mr. Greenberg provides a perspective of Take2 and ZelnickMedia placing themselves before shareholders. The core issue still stands, though, and that is some gamers do not want to see GTA IV and subsequent titles in the series produced by EA.



In the interest of sharing some thoughts on the recent offer by EA to Take-Two this post has been created. Maybe we could say thank you Strauss Zelnick, executive chairman, and the rest of the Board of Take-Two for declining EA's offers. At least they stand behind their product when facing a monopoly. EA is not helping the game industry progress forward in terms of innovative and quality games, it seems they only see green. Do they seek GTA IV or do they just want a monopoly on sports titles? This could be an awakening for them.
Therefore, we offered to initiate discussions with EA on April 30th, 2008 (the day after Grand Theft Auto IV is scheduled to release). We believe this offer demonstrated our commitment to pursuing all avenues to maximize stockholder value, while we believe that EA's refusal to entertain this path is evidence of their desire to acquire Take-Two at a significant discount, whereas we believe this value rightly belongs to our stockholders.


Plainly stated, Mr. Zelnick politely and firmly says thanks, but no thanks. If Zelnick is in it only for money, that may be so, but something may be different about it. It is possible that he has a greater focus of excellence and money is only a byproduct of his drive, but time will reveal the truth. Back in March, he did say, "I'm much more interested in growing the business than in selling it, to be clear. I would say for the next five to seven years this is a terrific time to be in the video game business."

After reading the press release a message jumped out: The company has faith in their product. Producers and developers with faith in the product will evolve video games to greater levels. How do you feel about this offer by EA? All comments will be appreciated.

Source: [Take2Games]
Viewer Comments
Asif
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Rock on T2!
02-25-2008 12:17 AM
infiniteammo
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Loyal T2 investors/shareholders (many of whom are employees and people within the company) would be severely put out if the T2 got "sold from underneath them" after the rocky road they had between Hot Coffee and now, on the very edge of releasing what many would consider to be their flagship title.

It wouldn't be in anyone's best interests to do so, it would really demonstrate that T2 doesn't have faith in Rockstar Games to put out a product that's going to just absolutely floor gamers and bring their quarter revenue just through the roof, and it'd really tick off people who held on to T2 stock when it got devalued up until this point (where it's value is likely to soar to new heights).

Electronic Arts also has a history of swallowing and destroying competition, anyone remember what happened after EA bought Origin? Don't see any more Wing Commander, or Ultima games (aside from UO) being published, from what I recall Chris Roberts and Richard Garriot didn't have very many positive things to say about EA doing that.

If/When EA puts a blank check in front of T2Interactive for control of their titles, expect Dan Houser and the talented people at Rockstar Games to pop up elsewhere in the industry making other awesome games, because experience shows that EA cares more about making sure their competition is ground into the dust than putting out awesome games.
02-25-2008 12:31 AM
hkg36
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i dont wanna see an EA Logo on a future GTA title. it just wont be the same
02-25-2008 12:48 AM
victim
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Imagine a GTA game that has no comedic approach to contemporary issues about society and culture. A world filled with product placement.

It would be god awful. I love T2 for not letting this happen.

[ post edited 02-25-2008 01:05 AM by victim ]
02-25-2008 01:03 AM
S3
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I think that the words about T2 being "These people have true love for the game. They have faith in their product. These are the kind of people that will evolve video games to greater levels" just because of this episode with $26 per share proposal are a little bombastic.

I mean, GTAs are the best games in the Universe, but I wouldn't like to sentimentalize T2 by any means. This is business. Rockstar/T2 are on the verge of releasing the most anticipated and probably the best game of the last 2 years which would significantly rise their stockholder price. That was the main reason for the rejection (and that is stated in the news post).

As for me, I'm not so sure T2 would reject this proposal if it was made in the middle of the Hot Coffee scandal. But nevertheless, I'm a devoted fan of Rockstar and I wish them all the success in the world.
02-25-2008 01:08 AM
Zidane
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It's Zelnick and the rest of the people at T2 that assure me there's a future for the gaming industry by not selling out. "Thank you" isn't enough. My heart skipped a beat in fear when I read about the initial offer.

When will EA ever learn? When they go out of business due to the jocks not buying Madden 2020?
02-25-2008 01:15 AM
S3
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Zidane: When they go out of business due to the jocks not buying Madden 2020?

Not a long time from now, I hope. As for me, I haven't bought a single EA title since November 2004.

If EA lays its dirty hands on GTA, it'll mean a catastrophe. I think no one wants to see GTA being released every year, having an idiotic whomped up storyline, all covered in stupid product placement, with no grim humour and drug and sex content (in order to edge into "Teen") - that won't be GTA at all.
02-25-2008 01:43 AM
RustyBadger
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I have a funny feeling EA would censor the crap out of it.
02-25-2008 09:14 AM
Neil
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It's a bit strange that you would say EA's goal is money, of course it is. That's the goal of every company - to make money, and it's especially the goal of publicly traded companies like EA and Take Two. They are there to make money for their shareholders. How they go about that may differ, but both companies seem to be doing something right at the moment.

I'm not sure that "a true love for the game" is something which every executive of a company would share, especially in the case of Take Two where the management arrived many years after Grand Theft Auto was devised and marketed.

I really think the hostility shown towards EA on GTA sites and in the gaming press in general is a bit silly though. I've seen people going after them for publishing annual sports titles, but Take Two do this at the moment already.

We also need not lose sight of the fact that Take Two is no longer just Grand Theft Auto. To an extent, this is one of Zelnick's true successes - bringing the company from the point where it was hanging by a thread made of Binco clothing to today where it has a profitable, multiformat catalogue of games and property. If anything, I'd think that EA would be far more interested in 2K Sports than Grand Theft Auto.
02-25-2008 10:16 AM
Kodo
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Thankyou Neil for the new perspective.
02-25-2008 11:50 AM
infiniteammo
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Well, I'd have to say that if it were more about 2K Sports, EA would have approached T2Interactive with an offer for Visual Concepts and Kush Games and the rights for 2K Sports.

The same way that if they were truly interested in publishing Grand Theft Auto exclusively, they'd make an offer for Rockstar Games, rather than the umbrella corporation that owns Rockstar Games. Rockstar Games isn't direct "competition" to EA Games, although certainly it is one of the many thorns in their side.

EA doesn't want competition like T2I eating their profits, EA doesn't want to make the best games, they want to be the only company allowed to make games. They're using Microsoft business principles of "Embrace, extend and extinguish", and it's working for them. They will eventually swallow T2I with a blank check, though right on the cusp of T2I seeing a quarter boost just isn't very likely.

Edit: Edited the link, it looked wonky.

[ post edited 02-25-2008 02:09 PM by infiniteammo ]
02-25-2008 02:07 PM
tenderbender
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Way to stick it to the man, Take2!
02-25-2008 03:17 PM
antena
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Meh, they are obviously waiting after GTA4 releases to sell since after GTA4, the stock prices will be through the roof.

I think this will happen (Take2 being sold) even if not to EA, to Viacom.
02-26-2008 02:46 PM
Sk_nk
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Heh! EA is so "smart" - they think they can buy T2 a few months before GTA4 release! They just want to buy it and get all the profits! I'm happy that T2 is not that stupid.
I love R* and T2 and I hate EA. I hate their clon games and "buy everything" politics...they just want to buy all good companies!
I don't like the idea of having EA gta series((
02-27-2008 12:22 PM
 

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