The COVID-19 pandemic has harmed countless people and businesses, both in terms of health and in terms of finances. However, during a period of time where much of the world was on lockdown and millions were confined to their homes, certain industries thrived. What else are you going to do when stuck at home than play video games?
This mentality led millions to buy Grand Theft Auto 5.
Gamers casual and otherwise looking for a new source of entertainment turned to GTA 5, and with their numbers bolstering the already large amount of monthly sales, it led to a milestone in record time and the highest sales in any Q2 since the original launch of the game way back in 2013.
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In context, Take-Two reported in May 2020 that the game has shipped 130 million copies. That's an increase of over 5 million copies over the course of just 3 months, which in and of itself is a wild number. Some games don't sell 5 million copies ever, let alone over such a short period of time.
During the earlier months of the pandemic peaking in the west, Rockstar pledged to donate proceeds to COVID-19 relief efforts, taking a percentage off all in-game purchases. This included Shark Cards and Gold in Red Dead Online, Rockstar's other major multiplayer title.
Red Dead Redemption 2 also broke a sales record during this time, shipping a total of 32 million copies. This might seem small next to GTA 5's 135 million, but in a vacuum we're still talking colossal numbers.
Wilder still is that the "copies shipped" metric only accounts for physical editions. Digital sales, which are becoming more and more prominent in the industry, aren't even counted in this number. Since the whole point of the lockdown was staying at home and social distancing, we'd wager even more people purchased the game digitally.
Did you buy GTA 5 during the lockdown?