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No problem becoming a smaller fish, says Houser

Rockstar's Sam Houser says he has no problem becoming a smaller fish in a bigger pond under EA

Despite the controversy surrounding his company's Grand Theft Auto franchise, Rockstar's Sam Houser suggests he has nothing in common with the GTA protagonists.

"I'm about the most conservative guy you'll ever meet," Houser told The Wall Street Journal online. "I have a panic attack if I get a parking ticket."

With the latest deadline for EA's takeover offer for Take-Two about to expire, the Journal questioned how Rockstar - and more specifically the Houser brothers - would fit in under an EA acquisition.

"These are the kids on the island in 'Lord of the Flies,'" said Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter. "Are they manageable? No one knows."

The Wall Street Journal noted that the Houser brothers have strong tempers, and a past history of conflict with game industry publications who haven't given Rockstar titles favourable ratings according to former employees.

"That's an area I've grown up in, definitely," Houser said.

If EA succeeds in acquiring Take-Two, some analysts believe EA's star developers might demand a bigger share of game proceeds. At the same time, given Rockstar's history of autonomy, Houser said it was unlikely he would seek EA's approval for game content.

Even so, Houser called EA CEO John Riccitiello "the real deal" and saw some appeal in an EA alliance which he said would make Rockstar a "much smaller fish in much bigger pond."

"I'm not someone who has any kind of problem with that," said Houser.

Riccitiello himself praised Houser, saying: "Spend two hours with [Sam] and come away and tell me you don't think he's as smart as Steven Spielberg or Bono."

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