Red Dead Redemption 2 has racked up more global sales in its first eight days than its predecessor managed in eight years, according to the game’s maker.
Rockstar, which is also behind the Grand Theft Auto mega-franchise, said its latest game “sold in” 17m copies of the American frontier game to retail outlets in its first 13 days on the market. The “sold in” tally is the number of copies of the game to have been ordered and shipped to retailers, not the number bought by consumers.
However, few of the 17m copies are likely to be left on shelves. The game clocked up $725m (£556m) in sales on its opening weekend, making it the second biggest launch of any entertainment product in history.
In less than two weeks the title, which has received outstanding reviews and numerous “perfect” scores from games critics, has effectively outsold the estimated 15m lifetime sales of the original Red Dead Redemption, which was released in 2010.
The only title to enjoy a bigger launch is Grand Theft Auto 5, which made $1bn over its first three days, and has sold more than 100m copies.
“The original game was well received but because of the [western] setting it didn’t at that time stoke the embers of excitement from traditional Rockstar fans more used to Grand Theft Auto,” said Piers Harding-Rolls, head of games research at IHS Markit. “With Red Dead Redemption 2 the wait has been so long and the critical reception so good the huge GTA5 user base has proved ready to try out a new Rockstar product.”
Sales of the game have outstripped the expectations of analysts and even Take-Two Interactive, the parent company of Rockstar, which raised its full-year revenue and profit forecast as a result.
“Red Dead Redemption 2 sold-in more units in its first 8 days than the original blockbuster Red Dead Redemption sold in its first 8 years and,” Strauss Zelnick, the chairman and chief executive of Take-Two, told investors at the company’s latest quarterly financial update.
The biggest selling video games in the UK last year, according to Entertainment Retailers Association, were:
FIFA 18 – 2.7m copies sold
Call of Duty: WWII – 2.44m
Grand Theft Auto V – 1.08m
Assassins Creed Origins – 680,000
Destiny 2 – 673,000