Rockstar Games, one of the largest video game publishers in the world, was hacked over the weekend, the company announced Monday.
The hacker gained access to videos and other files from Grand Theft Auto VI, Rockstar’s upcoming major title.
Screen grabs and video from the upcoming game circulated on Telegram and Twitter over the weekend, and were viewed by NBC News. The previous game in the series, Grand Theft Auto V, is one of the best-selling video games of all time.
“We recently suffered a network intrusion in which an unauthorized third party illegally accessed and downloaded confidential information from our systems, including early development video for the next Grand Theft Auto. At this time, we do not anticipate any disruption to our live game services nor any long-term effect on the development of our ongoing projects,” Rockstar said in an announcement posted to Twitter.
“We are extremely disappointed to have any details of our next game shared with you all in this way,” the announcement said.
Dozens of development videos of the game showing video of robberies, gunplay and open-world driving were posted on an online message board by the hacker, in what could be one of the biggest gaming leaks.
The company, however, said it did not expect the incident to affect the game’s development, helping its shares pare some of their losses from a 6% drop in premarket trading.
The hacking incident raised fears of a delay in the release of the highly anticipated title, the development of which was confirmed in February. Some analysts were also worried about a potential leak of the game’s source code.
“If the source code leaks, it could necessitate significant changes under the hood of the game to ensure its stability, and the server integrity of GTA VI Online once it launches,” Jefferies analyst Andrew Uerkwitz said.
Most brokerages, however, said the early video looked good despite not being intended for distribution.
“The leaked footage simply confirms existing market rumors on the game’s development that have been circulating for years,” Benchmark analyst Mike Hickey said.
“We are incrementally more confident the game can release in FY25 and provide a significant catalyst for revenue and profit growth.”
GTA VI is estimated to generate bookings of $3.5 billion at launch and an annual average of $2 billion thereafter, according to BofA Global Research.