The once booming genre of music games is in a bit of a slump lately. Through July, U.S. sales of music and rhythm games have declined 46 percent this year to $452 million, after a huge boom between 2005 to 2008.
“The genre has peaked,” Jesse Divnich, an analyst with Electronic Entertainment Design & Research, said in an interview with Bloomberg. “This genre has seen explosive growth over the past two years, so it would be wrong to assume that would continue.”
Divnich went on to predict that The Beatles: Rock Band will sell at least 1.7 million copies this year, fewer than half the 4 million or so he estimates for Guitar Hero 5.
Unless Divnich is a psychic, of course, it's just speculation, but he brings up a good point: Are The Beatles a big enough draw with video game consumers to support the kind of huge sales Harmonix/MTV Games are expecting for this title?
“I’m totally going to buy it, but I don’t think it’s going to be big with those who aren’t as into the Beatles,” Ken Ball, the co-owner of Game Over!, operator of three stores in Florida and Georgia, said. “Teenage kids and preteens are the audience that they are trying to appeal to, and the Beatles just aren’t as recognizable a band to them.”
I wouldn't know. I'm not a teenager or a preteen (I have a kid of my own!), but I can't imagine a person not being into The Beatles. I'm more excited about this game, by far, than any other game coming out this holiday season. I've played Beatles Rock Band at E3, and it's flawless as a music game, so, assuming everyone likes the gameplay, do you think it will sell?
Do you think the gaming community is interested enough in this older band to support this game, or are most of the gamers you know not going to bother dropping money on a band their grandparents listened to? What do you think of the estimate that it will sell half of what Guitar Hero 5 sells?