GTA 5 is looming, and in a rare interview, Rockstar Games founder Sam Houser has discussed the nature of the company’s gruelling development. He stressed that the Rockstar is currently, in the “realm of excitement and misery”, and that good game development is supposed to be tough.
Speaking with The Sunday Times, Houser said, “Even though we’ve done this for quite a long time, I still have to pinch myself and think, ‘How did I get on this train at the right time?’” and added, “Nothing else can claim to have the same infinite expansiveness ahead of it that this medium does. The train is still running.”
The company typically releases one new game each year. Speaking of its release methodology, Houser continued, “It comes back to something at the root of the whole company, which is that if you’re going to take £40 out of someone’s wallet, that’s a lot of money for a piece of entertainment – and you’ve got to justify that.
“We’re definitely in that realm of excitement and misery at the same time. It’s not supposed to be easy. Each time, we push everything to its limit. I don’t think it’s conscious, but it’s sort of how it has to be. It has to hurt more. You want to find Kurtz every time.”
On the studio’s controversy over the years and on how he feels society is more accepting of traits like violence and sex, Houser concluded, “Gamers are growing up, though we are still 10-20 years from all people in governance or authority understanding that it’s the same as any other art form and should not be singled out. We’re evolving. These kinds of things don’t happen overnight.”
GTA 5 launches September 17 on PS3 and Xbox 360.