Grand Theft Auto V, the highly anticipated next installment of one of the worlds most popular franchises, was initially announced for a "Spring 2013" release date for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Fast forward a few months to the start January, Rockstar Games made a promise of unveiling the official cover art and fast forward to the end of January; Rockstar all but scrapped the plans to unveil the cover art by the end of January and instead, announced that the game would be delayed until September 17, 2013; citing the need for "extra development time" as well as "additional polishing"
Despite these clear cut statements made by Rockstar Games and their parent company Take-Two Interactive, there are many fans who seem to think that the delay is attributed to something completely different; such as the idea that Grand Theft Auto V is going to be a next gen exclusive.
You would be forgiven for thinking that Grand Theft Auto V will be released on next gen consoles; as the impending announcement of the PlayStation 4 (codenamed "Orbis") on February 20 and its eventual release later this year.
But wait, lets not get ahead of ourselves here. Does the YouTube teaser that Sony posted on the 31st of January; promoting the fact that Sony are holding a meeting to talk about the "future of the PlayStation brand", coincidentally the same day that Grand Theft Auto V was delayed from the Spring 2013 release window, actually specifically state that the PlayStation 4 would indeed be officially announced? While this seems likely, the video doesn't specifically say that the PlayStation 4 would be announced on the 20th of February - this so-called assumption is merely a rumour. The meeting could be about almost anything related to the PlayStation brand.
Furthermore to this, the next Xbox console, supposedly called the Xbox 720 (and codenamed Durango according to some supposed leaks), is still merely just a rumour being taken for granted based on speculation posted on big gaming websites which is spurred up from some die-hard Xbox fanboys and supposed game developers posting on various fan forums - Microsoft have not given any information relating to the next Xbox console as of present.
Now, given that fact, it would be a pretty stupid financial decision to develop and release Grand Theft Auto V on newly released next generation hardware, not to mention hardware that hasn't even been announced yet, would it not? Not to mention also that it would be a pretty stupid decision for Rockstar to go back to the drawing board, and re-develop Grand Theft Auto V from scratch for the next generation hardware, wasting yet more money and more time; developing for consoles that wouldn't even nearly have as many owners when compared to the player-base that the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 have.
Of course, the above only really applies if rumours are correct and the next PlayStation and Xbox consoles are to be released at the end of this year. But chances are, they will not; but rather it will probably happen in one to two years years after the announcement.
Lets look at the announcement and eventual release of the PlayStation 2 and the PlayStation 3. Firstly, the PlayStation 2. Now, the PlayStation 2 was first announced in March of 1999, followed by a release almost a year later in March 2000. The PlayStation 3 saw an even wider window between announcement and release - with the console being announced in May of 2005 and released in November of 2006 - that equals a total of 18 months between announcement and release for the PlayStation 3. It is quite a ridiculous notion that the PlayStation 4 will be released six to eight months after its announcement, if it is indeed announced on the 20th of February - regardless of the technology being used.
Lets not forget also that various representatives of Rockstar Games themselves have stated that they are developing Grand Theft Auto V for the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360; the current generation - and this has been stated on multiple occasions in previews and such. It is absolutely baffling how people can somehow think that Rockstar are changing from these plans.
Furthermore to this, Rockstar Games have only ever ported one game from one generation to the next and that game was Bully which was ported to the Xbox 360 and Wii a couple of years after its initial release. Keeping in mind also that Bully is on a far smaller scale then Grand Theft Auto V will ever be. Do you really think it would be logical for them to port Grand Theft Auto V to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox 720 in a similar fashion given its size? Knowing how buggy the ported version of Bully was, probably not. We are also not counting downloadable ports in the PSN Store or the Xbox Live Marketplace which are almost essentially the same as the originals; with no added enhancements or gameplay features.
Bully was also a special case as it was released in 2006, well into the beginning of the current generation's lifecycle. Grand Theft Auto V is going to be released not even at the start of the next generation's lifecycle.
Putting it into more of a perspective, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas was released in around the same time of the last generation's lifecycle as Grand Theft Auto V will in this generation's lifecycle, which is around two years before the release and popularization of the successive generation hardware. It would make more sense for Rockstar to begin development of a new next-generation Grand Theft Auto title rather then port or re-develop Grand Theft Auto V two years down the track.
Simply put, Grand Theft Auto V being released on the next generation consoles is not going to happen. Grand Theft Auto V is going to be a current generation game, and that is that.