Grand Theft Auto 6 has been rumoured for years, but the next instalment in the open-world crime franchise could be a lot further than anticipated after Dan Houser will be leaving developers Rockstar in March of this year.
Rockstar Co-Found Leaving Leaves GTA 6 In Doubt?
Take-Two Interactive, the publisher of Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption, said it was "extremely grateful for his contributions" but confirmed that Dan’s brother Sam is still an integral part of Rockstar.
While Dan Houser hasn’t confirmed his reasons for leaving the company, he helped found Rockstar in 1998 alongside his brother, he had been on an extended break since last spring.
Such is the magnitude of his departure that Take-Two Interactive’s shares fell 5% in after-hours trading.
Dan Houser was the lead on the first Red Dead Redemption, and a writer on the 2018 sequel, as well as acting as one of the main writers on the Grand Theft Auto franchise – including the most recent entry Grand Theft Auto V, which continues to break sales records almost seven years on from its original launch.
In fact, as of November 2019, the game has shipped 115 million units across PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC and last-generation consoles.
During the development of Red Dead Redemption 2, Houser famously boasted of 100-hour working weeks for the senior writing team which in turn shed some light on “crunch” – a brutal period of overworking in the run-up to release.
Grand Theft Auto 6 is allegedly in development (perhaps unsurprisingly), after an artist working for Rockstar India (who had created vehicle models for Grand Theft Auto Online DLC) added GTA 6 as part of their resume.
The artist, Bibin Michael, is listed in Red Dead Redemption 2’s credits, suggesting that he is, in fact, a Rockstar employee – although all mentions of his CV look to have been scrubbed from the internet.