Grand Theft Auto Online’s Diamond Casino & Resort update last week gave Rockstar’s flagship franchise its biggest number of players ever.
Rockstar didn’t share specific numbers, but it’s striking that a game from 2013 can, six years later, record its highest daily and weekly player total with a free content update. The Diamond Casino & Resort is a long-awaited location that adds gambling, lifestyle and story-driven gameplay to the sprawling outlaw fantasy.
The casino opened on July 23 with a set of story-based cooperative missions as well as more open-ended activities, such as blackjack and kill-the-valet. The Diamond Casino had sat as a practically vacant lot with an “opening soon” sign since Grand Theft Auto 5 launched in September 2013. Grand Theft Auto Online debuted a month later.
Rockstar parent Take-Two Interactive and other sources credit the game with $6 billion in revenue generated. It and NBA 2K’s MyPlayer mode are routinely cited in investor conference calls as delivering mightily toward the publisher’s bottom line. Red Dead Online, a similar extension of last October’s Red Dead Redemption 2, continues that tradition with frequent updates and monetization.