I know this is probably not the best solution, but I can't readily edit after the time has elapsed as noted before...
I'm posting an additional bit I typed up for my own site, but I think it sums up my feelings about Rockstar's quiet anonymity behind closed doors and the unauthorized bio Jacked, that tries to open up the company's inner-workings for all fans. I don't know if critics would even bother to take the time to read Jacked, as they won't spend a minute actually playing GTA! haha
Here's what I offered after more reading in the book, and having seen the latest issue of EDGE magazine as well;
"The book Jacked tends to get interesting at the very end, where GTA IV enters the picture, and Hot Coffee's residual effects were still causing fall out, Though my earliest review was based on DMA's blogs regarding the book, and found out their take was based on memories working for Rockstar and it's former personal, those still working from the DMA years under David Jones. Oddly, EDGE referred recently to Naughty Dog as the Spielberg of gaming, when years before, David Jones was bestowed with that honor. Having been aware of all this in the past year's research, it caused me to laugh, as I'm sure there was no mental connection between the two...but having that honor is high praise indeed.
The book's factual account is called into question however, so take this with as much salt as required, but details surrounding the internal Hot Coffee disagreements were not all favorable with everyone working at Rockstar, the biggest shock is that a mainstay of Rockstar North, Terry Donovan opted to leave when others jumped ship. As well, Sam Houser's long time friend and co-founder Jamie King also left and didn't come back to gaming. The pressure of the rise of Rockstar North to it's prominence, good and bad, the pressures that are not really a secret, over several years, took their toll.
I'd probably been made aware of the situation when a California print article said the Rockstar San Diego programmer's wives were making it known that the demands of the work were taking a personal toll on relationships. Very rare is the dirty laundry of Rockstar aired, and not much of anything is commented on by them personally, so I see our duty as pointing out both the good and bad to get an idea of how the company look to approach their art and the Industry
Basically, from what we've assumed from all this, working for the Housers is no picnic. There was a reported month off between GTA IV to celebrate it's completion, and starting work on what we're STILL waiting for, GTA V. Between GTA III and GTA Vice City, there was really no time for a break. Anyone who's a musician or knows music well has seen the same thing effect recording artists and eventually lead to bands breaking up.
Rockstar had it's own exodus reported in some bleak detail in Jacked, however, the company soldiers on with new hired hands, but can it manage to move the industry forward without internally combusting?
One worry I think is still a factor since Rockstar really only came out from under their black cloud in the last 5 years, with still no GTA primary money maker of profit for the company.
The book touches on 9 hours of testimony that Sam Houser gave regarding Hot Coffee, where we're left wondering what was said in all that time! We're also made aware of Take2's false stock market accounting that left them on the hook for millions of dollars, add to that, at the same time, Hot Coffee's law suits and fines. The sad thing is the company really shot themselves in their own leg, and had they done things a bit more cautiously with better management and handling, they'd be in a much better position.
For sure, in my opinion, that would be never trying to subvert the ESRB, in HC, offer two versions, one with Adults Only, however, trying to get around excising the programming that the mod unlocked, they were on the hook legally. So there you have it, other then staying honest with stock projections, Rockstar could have been easily avoiding major hassles, that effected the bottom line.
I'd like to hear from you guys, as always, but suffice to say, Rockstar tried every promotional tactic in the book, starting out, and in the USA, trying to push the envelope, pushed back on them, hard!"
The last bit relates to Hot Coffee's impetus being to push the envelope. As a casual observer, I see that competition in facing off with Volition and Saint's Row, in which some low-ball humor surfaced in their open world games, and probably GTA's chief competitor still to this day