Why should rockers have all the fun at Activision Blizzard
The move makes sense, as Activision tries to raise the bar after Viacom itself one-upped Activision last year with Rock Band. Viacom's entry -- distributed by Electronic Arts
The challenge for Activision, according to the unnamed MTV News source, is securing song licensing rights. The major labels have been clamoring for a bigger piece of the action since Guitar Hero and Rock Band exploded onto the scene.
"The amount being paid to the music industry -- even though their games are entirely dependent on the content we own and control -- is far too small," Warner Music Group
I disagree, especially given how the presence of catalog titles in new games reawakens digital download sales, but developers may not want to anger the major labels like Warner or Sony
Thankfully for Activision, its merger with Vivendi's Blizzard Entertainment puts it on the same wavelength as Vivendi's Universal Music Group. The game may suffer if it limits itself to just one major label for content, but the jury is still out on DJ Hero's chances even if had every major artist on board.
Do folks really want to man virtual turntables to make beats and scratches? Isn't the club-hopper set too aged and jaded to make DJ Hero a hit? The key here will be marketing the game as an enhancement to Guitar Hero, making it a "must have" accessory for faux guitar strummers. If so, it's just a matter of time before Viacom and even a kid-friendly Disney
For Activision shareholders' sake, let's hope the company is just starting to scratch the surface.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz can hear The Smiths singing "Kill the DJ" at the notion of a DJ-based game. Rick does not own shares in any of the companies in this story, save for Disney. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy, and it could beat Jordan in Expert mode if it had to.