Analyst: Guitar Hero series to sell 7.5M in '07, two expansions coming

Wedbush Morgan Securities' Michael Pachter estimates the runaway hit of a rhythm game will put $550 million in Activision's coffers this fiscal year.

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When Activision acquired RedOctane in 2006, many wondered if the Guitar Hero publisher's near-$100 million price tag was exorbitant. Those doubts were amplified when the game's developer, Harmonix, was itself purchased by Viacom subdivision MTV Games--a union that would lead to the birth of critical hit Rock Band.

However, as repeated NPD reports have shown, Activision has enjoyed a massive return on its investment in the Guitar Hero franchise. How big, exactly? Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter thinks he has an idea. Following Activision's upward revision of its earning estimates this morning, Pachter issued a note in which he put a figure on the Guitar Hero franchise's sales for the publisher's current fiscal year, which ends March 31, 2008.

"We believe that this year's Guitar Hero sales reflect around 6 million units of bundles and 1.5 million units of disc-only sales, comprising around $550 million in total sales," said Pachter in a note. The figure includes all games in the series, including the recently released Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock (PC, Wii, Macintosh, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation 3).

Pachter went on to predict that the Guitar Hero juggernaut will be only slightly slowed during Activision's 2009 fiscal year. By then, the company will likely have started selling wireless Guitar Hero controllers a la carte.

"Our forecast presumes that year-over-year total unit sales will decline from 7.5 million to 6.3 million," surmised the analyst. "In order to deliver $410 million in sales next year, the company must sell approximately 3 million units of disc-only (around $145 million), plus 3.3 million units of bundles. Given our expectations for significantly higher download revenue and two expansion discs, we think these figures are easily achievable." (Emphasis added.) Pachter did not venture a guess as to what said expansions would be.

Discussion

131 comments
Blood-Angelas
Blood-Angelas

It would be great if you could download more songs from like Itunes and the developers work with Itunes to have their entire library accssesable for like £1 per song or whatever

kiddpepsi420
kiddpepsi420

Why? Why expansions when your game has DLC? why wouldn't they add more stuff with the store and make it so you can buy whatever online? It's not like their going to make new levels or anything, probibly just different color schemes like "Rocks The 80s" probibly "Guitar Hero Rocks the "90s" or "70s" I WANNA PLAY SOME GRATEFUL DEAD WITHOUT ROCKBAND! lol

irongobbo
irongobbo

lots o metal on those, and please more songs than rocks the 80s

nauruto110
nauruto110

adding to what fisher_81 said about 90's dont forget Metallica , Pantera , Offspring...

Rurouni_Fung
Rurouni_Fung

They need to make a PS2 expansion that has all the downloadable content from the other systems.

GAME_CITY
GAME_CITY

No thay need Guitar Hero:Hendrix edition and Guitar Hero:Herman Li edition

fisher_81
fisher_81

Guitar Hero Encore : Rock the 90's is a good idea. Get some more Nirvana, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, Sublime (Santeria has a tricky solo). Plus, two expansions . . . Ever think this may be the intro for Drum Hero and Vocalist Hero. If it is, I say include the same songs for all 3 games.

ChickenHounk911
ChickenHounk911

Here are the 2 expansions: Guitar Hero: TV Tunes Edition and Guitar Hero: Country Musics Best! (sarcasm)

MasterChief725
MasterChief725

good for activision, they made a great product, and they will reap the benefits. Way to go activision!

aegmama
aegmama

the expansions better not cost 50 or 60 dollars.

reactionsok
reactionsok

Sweet - more expansions to rip of CONSUMERS! TAKE THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

keyser27
keyser27

@holysocks Thank you! Did not know that!!!

dliu_37
dliu_37

rented it, beat it on expert in about 8 hours, hard about 7 hours.

4quarters
4quarters

1- Guitar Hero- Rocks The 90's 2- Guitar Hero- Guitar Gods (Vai, satriani,Lynch,Rhoads,Hammett,Clapton,BB King,McAlpine, Morse,Lukather,Sambora,Yngwie)

McSpazzotron
McSpazzotron

Come on, Activision. Give us 360 owners a larger taste of that GH1 and GH: 80's action. Oh, and lower the price. Buckethead, WOOT!

Fortier
Fortier

They should make Guitar Hero Encore: Gods of Guitar. The point being, it'd be ri-****ing-diculously hard. Sure, Slash and Tom Morello were cool bosses...but could you imagine the intensity of a battle with someone like Buckethead or Malmsteen? I think that'd be a pretty killer expansion...

bobbeck
bobbeck

xtreem, this is largely financial analysis...and it's not exactly "opinion"

Xtreeem813
Xtreeem813

Why are we still caring what analysts have to say? This isn't exactly news, it's opinion.

bigmick07
bigmick07

How about they just make downloadable songs a dollar then we can just choose which songs we want to play?

Eai_plays_halo
Eai_plays_halo

more songs please! maybe some foo fighters, more Tenacious D! put the f word in this game, it makes it all the better!

muffinduck01
muffinduck01

man i really hope on of them is soly dedicated to black sabbath they have so many uknown songs that are so much better then the war pigs iron man and paranoid stuff i would love to see heaven and hell the mob rules hole in the sky black sabbath the song and some others that would totally make my day

vass86
vass86

wow. it isn't even that good of a game

Samfisher_1
Samfisher_1

Ooo! Great expansions, maybe there'll bring out a modern track list game. With things from Bullet for my valentine, AFI and maybe Avenged sevenfold :)

Linken_brust
Linken_brust

Or maybe post-rock! Sigur Rós, Mogwai, Explosions in the Sky, Godspeed you Black Emperor, Mono, Múm, etc. But... I think it would't be attractive to common people, only music (and of course, guitar) lovers. I'm not a true Metal fan but, hell yeah! Something of Master of Puppets album would be awesome! I'd add Moonspell and Opeth to crimsonfish's list.

crimsonfish
crimsonfish

Still hoping for Metal Hero ..... Carcass,At the gates,Cannibal Corpse,Testament,Dimmu Borgir,Black Dahlia Murder,more Metallica(creeping death or master of puppets!), there are so many .

ChickenHounk911
ChickenHounk911

I can't wait until Rock Band starts to feature real Band Battles.... C'mon have you ever wanted to play against your favorite Band, challenging THEM on their tunes? If anyone can pull this off, its MTV, not Activision. By the way, what do you think the expansions will be? 90's? Spanish songs? There may be a big market for that...

mashom
mashom

Its competition, the game begins now.

yinyang3
yinyang3

Gimme some Queen. Tie Your Mother Down.

Nekimoto
Nekimoto

Lol, Rock band owns guitar hero now.

hamorhage
hamorhage

I'm all for an expansion with a create your "guitar hero "mode and maybe being able to choose your singer, bass player, etc... Its says your band. But where's the band? The only player you can choose is your character.

super_slonik
super_slonik

Good Job, Red Octane/Activision! Cant wait to see new expansions.

random_guy561
random_guy561

Ok. lets get this straight. Two expansions: WOW!!! Thats amazing, can't wait. Ok if these are the tiles of the expansions, i will go ballistic. Guitar Hero 3: Monsters of Metal Guitar Hero 3: Rocks the 70's And these songs to be included: for Monsters of Metal: Operation Ground and Pound - Dragonforce Crazy Train - Ozzy Osbourne Deuce - Kiss Girls, Girls, Girls - Motley Crue Every Rose has it's Thorn - Poison Dallas 1pm - Saxon Angel of Death - Slayer Eruption - Eddie Van Halen Ok, thats quite a bit. Now for the Rock's the 70's. Highway to Hell - AC/DC Radar Love - Golden Earring Rush - 2112 (the partial version, the whole thing is tooo long, 20mins) The Wizard - Black Sabbath Tiger Feet - Mud Sweet Home Alabama - Lynyrd Skynyrd Tell me what you think of those lists! Really excited!!!

RojAvon
RojAvon

Prince is a maniac when it comes to rights and licensing. I'd be really surprised if that happened. I think they need a country disc.

bikemba
bikemba

This may sound stupid you all, but I know one maybe R&B guy that has a slew of guitar songs that we could put in Guitar Hero: Prince. He has the likes of songs like "Little Red Corvette", "When Doves Cry", "1999", and "Le'ts Go Crazy", just to name a few. I mean, I feel you could put about ten Prince songs on the CD as well and get away with it. I would love to rock that because I'm playing it on the PC with the Xbox 360 white guitar and it rocks with no slowdown at all and all animations on. Just a sick game. I really love, "Hit Me With Your Best Shot." I also would like to see some Jimmy Hendricks or Guns N' Roses in their. Peace and wonderful comments you all.

Linken_brust
Linken_brust

An "Industrial" expansion would be nice. With Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, KMFDM, Rammstein, Skinny Puppy, Fear Factory, Marilyn Manson and all that stuff.

holysocks
holysocks

@keyser27, GH3 does have a precision mode that you can turn on in cheats if you're complaining about note window too big.

Pedro7_2000
Pedro7_2000

I've already bought Rock Band DLC, but won't be buying any GH until they revamp their pricing structure. I'm all for the game, but I think so far RB is winning (or at least will win in the long run).

Timstuff
Timstuff

Who here would bet money that the two expansions will be "Drum Hero" and "Vocal Hero?" LOL

keyser27
keyser27

Maybe a boss battle expansion where you play play Slash and Tom Moreillo 7 more times each. Yay! Guitar Hero 3 was a huge letdown. How bout an expansion that makes the note window smaller like 1 and 2 so that it takes some skill to play the "easier" songs? How bout making the notes "match" more closely what the music is doing (playing a three button chord where a note is played in the song is disconnecting). How bout making the expansions $35 each, so any thinking human being just buys Rock Band instead, since it plays about 3 times better and the crowd actually sings along if they dig it? How bout an expansion to make the character design not look awful?

FLYmeatwad
FLYmeatwad

Rocks the 90's Crap Music and Rocks the 2000's no doubt. Still a 60's or 70's disc would be great. I'll be keeping an eye out for what they have coming out to see if it looks worth it.

waveddiamond
waveddiamond

they need a lil system of a down, slipknot, korn, disturbed, mudvayne, lep zepplin and tool/perfect circle. :) thats all I ask for RedOctane is that really that much

kori911
kori911

This game is hard, with the buttons and the pushing NICE LADY!