Note to Nintendo: Stay far, far away from Take Two, Rockstar

Wired Magazine is covering the shareholder coup going down at Take Two Interactive today, so I thought I’d revisit my post from this week about whether or not Nintendo should swoop in an buy up Take Two.


As all this played out at Take-Two, the Rockstars continued their rise. Dan Houser assumed the creative reins, writing game dialog and directing star-studded voice-over sessions. Sam Houser, president and executive producer, played the charismatic visionary. He hung a poster in his office of Don Simpson, the infamous playboy producer of films like Flashdance and Top Gun…

Rockstar Games moved to an even bigger loft down Broadway. The company gobbled up more game development houses to complement its satellite studios in Vienna, San Diego, and Vancouver. Many execs bought fancy cars and homes. But as one former employee puts it, “The money turned them into jackasses very quickly.”

The Housers became increasingly demanding. Gillian Telling, a former assistant to Dan, remembers being commanded to clean snow out of his home satellite dish. When she failed to bring in the right kind of bagel, she says he called her a “useless whore” and a “c**t.” Former employees say they routinely heard yelled insults and slammed telephones. “These people are insanely smart and really good at being mean,” says one. “They’re British.”

Like I said before, Nintendo will never buy a company like this. Nintendo — actually any respectable gaming company for that matter — has no need for a developer that “accidentally” leaves Hot Coffee incidents in games meant for mass consumption. Come to think of it, Rockstar is sounding a lot like Gizmondo these days. Next stop: freeways and Ferrari Enzos!