Take-Two CEO Takes Jabs at Ubisoft for Its Inefficient Structure and at EA for Its Inferior Quality

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Jun 20, 2018
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Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick is known to be never one to mince words. A year ago, for example, he openly said he wasn’t convinced Virtual Reality would become powerful technology to be used for entertainment.

At E3 2018, speaking in an interview with GamesBeat, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick flaunted his company’s nimble structure and compared it positively against Ubisoft’s, which has over three times the number of employees but less revenue.

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We are a global business, but we’re not that big. We have 4,200 people. We have 17 studio locations. It’s not that far-flung. We’re still able to get our arms around it.

They [Ubisoft] have 14,000 people, and their revenue is less than ours. We don’t understand it.

When the interviewer asked if Strauss Zelnick believed EA’s strategy to base all their games on the Frostbite engine was useful, he replied citing Take-Two’s higher quality of games (in his opinion) compared to those published by Electronic Arts.

We do not. Take a look at our quality versus theirs [EA’s]. I don’t think it’s realistic to say to people, “We think you’re the best creators in the business. Come in and do your best work. Oh, and incidentally, you have to use this technology over here.” We do care what the technology is. We do care how much we spend on development. Rockstar has a proprietary engine. Within the 2K label, there are proprietary engines. We also license external software.

We don’t think there’s much of a percentage in having a corporate engine. Midway had a vaunted corporate engine, corporate technology library. Midway filed for bankruptcy. There’s little evidence that having a corporate technology system is in service of the best entertainment properties. But reasonable people can disagree about that. It’s not our strategy.

Take-Two is about to get a big boost in revenue with the upcoming release of Red Dead Redemption 2, that’s for sure. The highly anticipated open world western themed game is due to be released on October 26th for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

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