Activision Calls Rock Band a Guitar Hero Imitator

Guitar Hero 2We all know that breakups can be messy. Apparently, Activision and Harmonix had an extremely rocky one.

In a conference call to investors detailed at Gamasutra, Activision officials expressed their happiness with the performance of the Guitar Hero franchise, and said that they were “just getting started” with long-term development on the series. That should be no surprise to anyone, as it’s selling like hotcakes, and everyone I know has at least one copy in their house.

Then, Activison was asked how they felt about the upcoming Rock Band, and the competition it would surely provide for Guitar Hero. Their response? Unnamed ‘company officials’ said that it “wasn’t surprising that [the franchise] had attracted imitators.”

So, let me get this straight. Harmonix is ‘imitating’ the game they had a large part in creating? Am I the only one who thinks this makes no sense?

I mean, sure Rock Band will be competition for GH, just as subsequent GH titles will compete with Rock Band. It’s the nature of the business. But to accuse the developer behind GH of ‘imitating’ what at one time was their game?

I think that this might be sour grapes from Activision to a small extent. I mean, here’s Guitar Hero, and it’s a beast of a title. There’s never been anything like it before, and the sales reflect that. Now, Harmonix is going to bring along Rock Band, and it has to have Activision at least a little nervous.

Also, it’s important to remember that without really calling out Activision, Harmonix has said in interviews that Guitar Hero was created with a “tiny budget and a fraction of a year to build it.” Also, they mention MTV’s support, saying, “And we’re fortunate enough now to be in a position as part of MTV, where basically we’re being given the creative freedom and the resources to really make the huge game that we’ve wanted to make for years, which is Rock Band.” (Check the whole Harmonix interview)

So it’s also possible that these two companies are doing some subtle sniping over something that has not or may not become public knowledge. Whatever the case, it’s safe to assume that both Guitar Hero and Rock Band will be hugely popular in the coming years.

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7 Comments on Activision Calls Rock Band a Guitar Hero Imitator


On June 1, 2007 at 3:52 pm

Ron you know me, and guess what….I don’t own not one version of Guitar Hero.


On October 7, 2007 at 1:27 am

I think I might buy Rock Band and Guitar Hero III because I think both games are really great, Rock Band is good for parties and stuff and Guitar Hero is for playing by your self. So both games are cool!


On October 18, 2007 at 4:50 pm

I think rockband looks like its gonna be a blast but gh3 looks fun too and plus rock band is 200 dollars! thats a lot of money for a single game. But thats what i think lol


On October 18, 2007 at 6:17 pm

I think I’ll buy guitar hero 1 instead.


On October 24, 2007 at 8:53 pm

dud rockband is 159.99 and gh3 is like 100.99 so its like 60more and u have a much better game


On October 24, 2007 at 8:55 pm

+ gh3 isnt made by the same people rockband is made by the people who made guitar hero 1 and 2


On October 29, 2007 at 12:00 am

Rock band may be expensive but it’s going to be bigger and better than gh3