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Zelnick: Take-Two To Continue Duke Nukem IP

Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick says the company will continue to take advantage of its ownership of the Duke Nukem IP in the future, potentially taking the franchise outside of video games.
Take-Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick says the company will continue to take advantage of its ownership of the Duke Nukem IP in the future, potentially taking the franchise outside of video games. "You will see future Duke IP coming from this company," Zelnick said in an interview with Forbes. "Part of it is the economic opportunities that interact with entertainment are so huge." "If we can take some of our intellectual property and bring it to another medium in an extraordinary high quality way, that delights consumers and represents an interesting commercial opportunity for us, we will," he continued, pointing out that the company has considered similar opportunities for the BioShock franchise. The long-awaited release of Duke Nukem Forever this month was met with outright hostility by most reviewers, who panned the game for its dated gameplay and crude humor. Despite the reception, analysts still expect the title to sell millions of copies. In the Forbes interview, Zelnick reiterated Take-Two interest in iOS and Android development, but noted that even a successful release like the iOS version of Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars isn't going to be a major revenue driver for the company. "At the price point for which we can sell on the iPhone, it is not going to be economically meaningful," Zelnick said. "At the end of the day, we are interested in creating economic value, and what we intend to do is make something and sell it to millions and millions of people, and sell it at a high price. You don’t want to spend lots and lots of money to make something you are going to sell to a small amount of people at a low price." Zelnick saw more hope for developing moderately priced titles on mid-sized screens like tablets, which could feasibly sustain prices of $20 to $40 for "a robust product" that provides "an engaging experience." Smaller cell phone screens will remain the realm of cheaper, quicker interactive experiences, he said. The Take-Two CEO also stressed that titles with cinematic "clothing" -- like those from Rockstar or Heavy Rain maker Quantic Dream -- still need to include a "competitive element" to engage players. "You dispense with gameplay and you don’t have interactive entertainment," he said. "If you try to dispense with the competitive element you get Heavy Rain – it was beautiful and interactive but there was no competitive element. There is no reason to sit down and do it."

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