Guitar Hero 4 Begins World Tour
Guitar Hero can be addictive even for non-gamers such as myself. It's no surprise that many people are eager to check out the newly released 4th edition of Guitar Hero.
When it hits stores Sunday, the fourth installment of the wildly popular Guitar Hero video game could become a test of the game industry's ability to weather the broader economic storm.
Activision Blizzard Inc.'s Guitar Hero World Tour is one of the company's most important games of the year. At $189.99, it will also be one of the most expensive games the Santa Monica publisher has ever released.
Although some analysts still expect the franchise to drum up $1.4 billion in sales this year, the title's steep price could turn away some consumers as they pinch pennies this holiday season.
"In this economy, people will be a little more frugal," said Ricardo Torres, editor of Gamespot, a website that reviews games. "This fall, it's all about value."
For Aaron Green, who plays Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock with his 9-year-old son, Alex, the new game is still a good value.
But the price tag makes him pause. Instead of splurging on the game right when it comes out, as he would have in years past, the 43-year-old audio-visual coordinator from Rancho Mirage said he would wait to give the game to his son for Christmas.
"The price is a little steep," Green said. "But we still need our creature comforts to help us feel better."
The popularity of the game is readily acknowledged, spurring on developments in this genre for different target markets. Guitar Praise, a Christian rock game debuted in September.