Stadia Corner: Take-Two Interactive CEO’s comments on Stadia under new scrutiny

STORY: This is part 1 of a 2 part series – The REAL Stadia vs the Bad Journalism. More facts surface regarding Take-Two Interactive CEO’s comments on Stadia. It appears the head of parent company to the NBA 2K, GTA, Red Dead Redemption franchises, comments may have been mishandled. As a result, it’s not looking good for many game journalists…

CONTROVERSY

Strauss Zelnick, CEO of Take-Two Interactive, made comments last week that became controversial for Stadia. According to many in the video game press, these comments represented some unease in the relationship between Take-Two and Google. That was due to many of their articles implying that Take 2 was disappointed in the platforms performance since launch. The articles also gave the appearance that Zelnick was losing confidence in the Stadia business model. These said comments from the CEO were made during a Q&A with the Bernstein Annual Strategic Decisions Conference group.

However we had a chance to explore all this during a recent sit down with content creator @cliveillenden . Clive Illenden exposes a lot information missed by the game media. In the sit-down that can be seen here , he appears to effectively debunk the thesis of many of the headlines and stories told prior. Such include:

  • Take-Two CEO is disappointed with Stadia’s performance
  • He has doubts if the business model will work
  • He prefers a subscription / streaming hybrid (aka Gamepass)

THE DISCOVERY

What Clive effectively demonstrates is that the opposite of these notions are more reasonably asserted from Mr. Zelnick’s comments during the Q&A. This is due to Clive showing the full comments the CEO made about Stadia, as well as sharing the transcripts of what were said throughout the entire session. Clive in contrast effectively argues:

  • Strauss never put too much stock in Stadia’s immediate performance to be ‘dissapointed’ . He said before Stadia’s launch game streaming was not a transformative business model for their products
  • The ‘tech’ isn’t transformative
  • He considers Stadia to be a high performing streaming product. It is implied by the fact he said Take-Two will only support such, that make sense for their business. The company has pulled their library from Stadia competitor GeforceNow and continues to add games to Stadia.
  • It is important important to separate subscription models from streaming models. That is because the two don’t need each other to work
  • Straus actually stated during Q&A, for the company’s business model, subscription models like Gamepass don’t work.

REPUTATIONAL RISK?

These revelations do not look good for the gaming journalists and their publications. That’s due to what the questionable assertions regarding Zelnick’s comments.  These publications include Gamespot, Forbes, PCGamer and more. When asked why Clive attributed this to lazy journalism. He stated it took him a little over “54 minutes” to discover the “truth” (time to listen to entire Q&A and download transcripts). Clive’s entire video reviewing the Q&A can be seen here.

Let us know what you think? Does the fact-finding from Clive make gaming journalist look bad? Let us know in the comments section below.

See Part 2 of The REAL Stadia vs the Bad Journalism —- Clive further exposes the bias journalism methods.

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