A few months ago, MTV purchased Harmonix–the video-game developer that produced the shred-’til-you’re-dead title Guitar Hero, and its sequel–for $75 million. But Variety reports that Harmonix won’t be producing any more titles in the Hero series, and that MTV’s purchase is starting to seem like a questionable decision:
Harmonix rose to fame for its work producing “Guitar Hero,” a successful game that lets players simulate being a rock star on a controller made to look like a guitar. Last November’s sequel, also developed by Harmonix, was one of the bestselling games of the year.
However, publisher RedOctane — part of Activision — recently confirmed that a new developer, NeverSoft, is working on the next sequel. Neversoft, which is owned by Activision, is primarily known for making Tony Hawk brand skateboarding games.
While most observers expected that MTV had a lot in store for Harmonix, given the very high price it paid, few expected it to abandon work on “Guitar Hero.”
However, Activision apparently couldn’t or didn’t want to work with a developer now owned by MTV. That means Harmonix is most likely working entirely on original projects for its new corporate parent, which is trying to expand its presence in the vidgame biz.
Harmonix has since gone on the offensive, with one producer claiming that the company is working on a “bigger, more ambitious music endeavor”–but not giving any details. Which makes us wonder if our predictions of Next: The Video Game might not turn out to be true after all.
Harmonix has zero to do with ‘Hero’ [Variety]