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We are always hearing about video game sales. Popular game makers post millions of copies sold and billions of dollars in revenue. What is less common is headlines on what it takes to produce one of these superstars. Making blockbuster games requires enormous costs in development and marketing. Here is our list of the most expensive creations of all time.
- Destiny – This game was setting records before it was even released. With a production cost at an estimated $500 million, even more records are anticipated.
- Grand Theft Auto V – This chart topper cost $265 million, including up front infrastructure costs and investment in the game’s engine. Compare this to the production of a blockbuster movie like Pirates of the Caribbean: World’s End (the most expensive ever made) which cost $300 million to create.
- Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 – As the sixth installment in the Call of Duty series, the production costs were pretty reasonable at $50 million. A generous marketing and distribution budget, however, ranks this creation cost at about $200 million.
- Star Wars: The Old Republic – The Star Wars name is associated with popularity and the MMORPG style gameplay was already a proven success with World of Warcraft, but $150-$200 million is still a pretty big investment.
- Final Fantasy VII – $145 million may not seem high when compared to some of these other games – until you realize that this game was made in 1997. Today the same value would be over $200 million dollars.
- Max Payne 3 – Originally scheduled to launch in 2009, this game added on some extras to debut three years later with a $105 million price tag.
- Disney’s Infinity – This title surprised us a little, but the $100 million used managed to gather all our Disney favorites into a single adventure.
- Grand Theft Auto IV – At $100 million, this game is less than half the cost of the next installment in the series.
- Tomb Raider – Lara Croft remains as popular as ever, selling over 1 million copies in the first 48 hours of its 2013 release. This helps justify this $100 million production cost.
- Red Dead Redemption – Costing between $80- $100 million dollars, we can see the investment in the high-quality graphics and details.