Take-Two Confirms GTA VI Leak, Claims Game Development Unaffected

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Sep 19 (Reuters) – Take-Two Interactive Software Inc (TTWO.O) confirmed on Monday that a hacker has leaked the first images of Grand Theft Auto VI, the next installment of the best-selling video game.

Dozens of game development videos showing footage of flying, gunfire and open-world driving have been posted to an online message board by the hacker, in what may be one of the biggest leaks ever. games.

The company, however, said it did not expect the incident to affect the game’s development, helping its shares to pare some of their losses following a 6% decline in pre-market trading.

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“Rockstar Games’ current services are unaffected. We have already taken steps to isolate and contain this incident,” Take-Two said in a statement.

The hacking incident raised fears of a delay in the release of the highly anticipated title, which was confirmed in development in February. Some analysts were also worried about a possible leak of the game’s source code.

“If the source code leaks, it could require significant changes under the hood of the game to ensure its stability and the integrity of the GTA VI Online server once it launches,” Jefferies analyst Andrew Uerkwitz said.

Most brokerages, however, said early footage looked good even though it wasn’t intended for distribution.

“The leaked footage simply confirms existing market rumors about the game’s development that have been circulating for years,” said Benchmark analyst Mike Hickey.

“We are increasingly confident that the game can release in FY25 and provide a significant catalyst for revenue and profit growth.”

GTA VI is expected to generate $3.5 billion in bookings at launch and an annual average of $2 billion thereafter, according to BofA Global Research.

The hacker, who also claimed to be behind a cyber incident at Uber Technologies Inc (UBER.N) last week, had posted a message on the forum trying to “negotiate a deal” with Take-Two. Read more

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Reporting by Nivedita Balu and Abinaya Vijayaraghavan in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath and Anil D’Silva

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Margie D. Carlisle