Guitar Hero is among the biggest earners for Activision Blizzard
, standing alongside World of Warcraft as one of the pillars on which the publisher is relying for continued revenue.
So, it's no surprise that the company is planning to release, in quick succession, a lot of titles bearing the brand, from the all new Guitar Hero 5 to the Van Halen special
and to the DJ Hero spin off. With all these games coming out, it's no surprise that a backlash against Guitar Hero and music games in general is beginning to take shape.
Leading the charge are well-known musicians who are not content with how young people first get to experience playing music. Jack White, the guitarist of the White Stripes, was quoted by music site NME, as seen by Eurogamer, as saying that “It's depressing to have a label come and tell you that is how kids are learning about music and experiencing music... if you have to be in a videogame to get in front of them, that's a little sad.”
Jimmy Page, the well-known Led Zeppelin guitarist, also jumped in saying that “You think of the drum part that John Bonham did on Led Zeppelin's first track on the first album, 'Good Times Bad Times'. How many drummers in the world can play that part, let alone on Christmas morning?”
The effort to blame Guitar Hero
for the woes that the music industry is going through was a staple of statements from music company representatives in 2008, but this is the first time when performers are coming out against music games because they offer a fake experience, which teaches players nothing about actual music playing.
Still, the statements are a bit misguided as they fail to acknowledge that the various Guitar Hero games manage to bring to the attention of gamers songs that they might otherwise never come into contact with.