Guitar Hero and DJ Hero DLC Coming to an End

By Xav de Matos, Feb 10, 2011 6:00am PST Soon after Activision Blizzard announced it would scale back its entire music-based video game business due to declining profits, Shacknews contacted the publisher to find out whether its current crop of music titles would continue to see DLC support. At the time, Activision Blizzard declined to comment.

It now appears that both titles will soon see its stream of DLC come to an end.

In a post on the official DJ Hero website entitled "Guitar Hero Franchise Update FAQ," the site tackles a few inquires regarding the cancellation of a new Guitar Hero and the slimming of the entire Activision Blizzard music game business.

One question--"Are you still going to make new DLC for Guitar/DJ Hero?"--offered this response:

We will release the previously announced DLC track and mix packs for February, but--unfortunately--we will not be able to release new DLC packs beyond what we already have.

The FAQ goes on to explain that rapid declines in the music genre over the last two years have overshadowed the demand for products, such as Guitar Hero and DJ Hero. "Unfortunately, based on current demand, we simply cannot continue to profitably make these games given the considerable licensing and manufacturing costs," the post says. The post reassures fans that both games will still be supported by Activision Blizzard customer service as will its existing DLC. Both titles will also continue to be sold in stores.

Due to the cuts made to Activision Blizzard's music business, "approximately 500 employees" throughout the company will lose their jobs by March 31, 2011.

In a Form 8-K report, Activision Blizzard notes one developer will be shut down due to the music game related restructuring plan; however, the publisher declined comment when Shacknews inquired which developer would be shuttered.

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  • Some podcast excerpts from the past year of music games:

    Probably the biggest was the pre-E3 week, when a ton of games got revealed and/or announced:
    - Power Gig: Rise of the SixString (press gameplay demo, exclusive artists announced)
    - Def Jam Rapstar (dated and priced)
    - Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock (announced)
    - Rock Band 3 (embargo lifted, pro mode and guitar controller revealed)

    - Giant Bombcast 6-8-2010, 45 minutes: Power Gig: Rise of the SixString press event
    Jeff Gerstmann [quoting the Seven45 rep]: "'NO ONE is more authentic than Kid Rock!'"

    - Giant Bombcast 6-8-2010, 1 hour 15 minutes: "'Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock' announced"
    Jeff Gerstmann: "But keep in mind it'll still make money for at least another 1 or 2 years, before people figure out, 'Wait... this sucks!'"

    - Giant Bombcast 6-8-2010, 1 hour 23 minutes: Def Jam Rapstar bundled, dated, and priced
    Brad: "Music games, jeezus..."
    Jeff: "Yeah, weren't these all dead? Wasn't this done?"
    Ryan: "No, we're in it. We're in the end zone here. This is it."
    Brad: "These are the death throes."
    Jeff: "So these are the end times? The last run? Like everyone who's got any idea is just getting it out now..."
    Vinny: "Karaoke drumstick revolution party!"

    - Giant Bombcast 6-8-2010, 1 hour 44 minutes:
    Vinny: "I can't believe we talked about FOUR rhythm games!'
    Jeff: "This is 2010, y'all! Return of the rhythm game! Just when you thought they were dead, they came back to... MAKE SURE they were dead!"

    - Weekend Confirmed 12 (6-11-2010), 40 minutes to 51 minutes: Rock Band 3 pro mode details
    Jeff Cannata: "I feel sorry for the Neversoft guys, and oh my god, Power Gig!? What a nightmare for those guys!

    - Giant Bombcast 9-28-2010, 1 hour 37 minutes:
    Jeff Gerstmann: "Rock Band is iterating on instruments and pro mode... you look at Guitar Hero, and the pitch is, 'you're gonna earn more stars per song!'... Unless this somehow catches on and reignites the genre, at some point someone's just gonna be like, 'I wear a suit to work, and you're all fired!'"

    - Weekend Confirmed 28 (10-1-2010), 2 minutes to 24 minutes: Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock
    Brian Leahy: "Warriors of Rock has regressed back!"

    - Weekend Confirmed 29 (10-8-2010), 14 minutes to 20 minutes: Def Jam Rapstar
    - Weekend Confirmed 29 (10-8-2010), 20 minutes to 28 minutes: Rock Band 3