Obviously, when Rockstar announced the Grand Theft Auto IV delay, it hit gamers like a ton of bricks. Initially expected to arrive on October 16 of this year, it was bound to be one of the biggest titles of the year – perhaps second only to Halo 3 – but now, we'll have to wait until next year. The only question is…when in 2008?

At the time of the delay confirmation, the new date simply said "Q2 2008," which quickly became "April 2008" according to a variety of sources. But now, it appears we might have to wait even longer, if this Amazon.com's listing is to be believed. As you can see, it's the Xbox 360 version of the game, and it says it will be available on June 30, 2008. Could this be the new official release date?

Well, it's hard to say. After all, the PS3 version of the game still shows an October 16, 2007 release, which of course isn't true. But this contrast does spark a number of questions. We often check retailer dates simply because they sometimes have information not yet revealed to the press, but why update one date and not the other? How come they didn't change the date of the PS3 version? "June 30" sounds more like a place-holder for retail pre-orders (at GameStop, for example), but Amazon has been taking pre-orders for quite some time.

Furthermore, we'd like to propose one other admittedly far-fetched theory: recently, the statement that Sony was "prepared to take Rockstar under their wing" flew around the Internet, and some have speculated this might mean a long-term exclusive deal. A little while back, Sony told us to expect "fireworks" at the upcoming Games Developers Conference in Leipzig, which takes place this month. And now, we have an October 16, 2007 listing for GTAIV for the PS3, and a June 30, 2008 date for the Xbox 360 version. Two big games ( Unreal Tournament 3 and Haze ) are timed exclusives for the PS3 this year… Oh, you can finish up the rest of this little analysis. Well, we're just saying.

What's the deal? Well, we expect Amazon will either update the PS3 listing or change the 360 date; or, Rockstar might clear it all up today at some point. We'll keep you apprised of any future developments.

Related Game(s): Grand Theft Auto IV

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