Strip clubs, robberies and stolen cars. Let a gaming fan read that list and you will hear three letters: GTA. For years, game fans have been eagerly awaiting images of the new game in the Grand Theft Auto series. The one and a half minute long preliminary announcement was published yesterday GTA VI on YouTube and that led to a new record: within 24 hours, the video became the most viewed trailer on YouTube ever.
The trailer is not yet close to the most viewed YouTube videos. That list is topped by music videos, with Baby Shark from the Korean company Pinkfong with billions of views at number one. But it’s going fast.
Yesterday was a bitter pill for developer Rockstar Games: the launch of the trailer was announced with much fanfare on social media last week, but suddenly had to be brought forward due to a leak. Hours before the official release was scheduled, the video was already shared on platform X.
After the official release, well-known names such as basketball player LeBron James and rapper ICE T immediately made themselves heard. “82 million views in 20 hours, I think GTA is popular”, ICE T tweeted. That number has now risen to 103 million clicks. And that’s it Guinness World Records the most popular video game reveal ever.
In addition, videos about the trailer can now count on a large number of views. For example, one of the most viewed videos about details from the game is that of gamewebsite gameranx, now has 1.5 million viewers. From hotel name signs to animated animals in the trailer: gameranx speculates for 14 minutes about what gamers can expect from the new game. And that says everything about the popularity of GTA.
Back to the 80s
And then the music. Developer Rockstar left for the GTA VItrailer does not make a song by a well-known artist, as is often the case with films. Instead, the American game publisher went back to a relatively unknown song from the 80s, Love Is A Long Road by the late rock artist Tom Petty.
Since the trailer appeared online yesterday, the song has been streamed about 40 percent more than last week, Spotify calculated. at the BBC. That in itself is not unusual: also the popularity of Linda Rondstadt’s Long Long Time skyrocketed after the song was featured in the popular television series The Last of Us. But the sudden popularity of Love Is A Long Road is unique, according to Spotify.
Petty has previously ‘lent’ his music to Rockstar Games: as a precursor Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (2004) is Petty’s song Runnin’ Down A Dream to be heard emphatically. “Tom loved it Runnin’ Down A Dream to contribute,” the social media team of the artist, who died in 2017, responded yesterday. “And it is an honor to Love Is A Long Road heard in the trailer.”
And the fans? For the time being, they will have to make do with the 90 seconds that the trailer lasts in total. The release of GTA VI is planned for 2025 and there is no date yet for a gameplay trailer – which shows how you as a gamer actually play the game -.
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