Scratch: The Ultimate DJ spins to 360, PS3

Genco and 7 Studios team with Quincy Jones III on hip-hop rhythm game next spring; Numark onboard for turntable peripheral.

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Rhythm games spanning a variety of music genres have been around for years. However, it wasn't until until little-known game makers RedOctane and Harmonix toured with Guitar Hero in 2005 that the rhythm genre took a dramatic turn toward superstardom. Thus far, though, the rhythm-game revolution hasn't expanded much beyond its rocking roots.

It's a wonder there aren't more afro-related turntable injuries.
It's a wonder there aren't more afro-related turntable injuries.

Genco Interactive and 7 Studios are hoping to change that fact. The gamemakers today announced Scratch: The Ultimate DJ, a hip-hop-based rhythm game that will make use of a specially designed turntable controller designed by Numark. The game is currently slated to arrive for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 this spring.

It's often said that a rhythm game is only as good as its setlist, and the gamemakers promise tunes from "the biggest names in hip-hop." Indeed, as part of today's announcement, the publisher said that it has partnered with Quincy Jones III and QD3 Entertainment, which has produced music for such hip-hop legends as Tupac Shakur, LL Cool J, and Ice Cube.

Information on the game is scarce, though the developer did release a handful of screenshots today. The game features a cel-shaded artistic style, with a scrolling rhythm board not unlike Konami's Rock Revolution. According to Genco and 7 Studios, gameplay will be "similar to top-selling rhythm games," with players starting out as a journeyman DJ and attempting to make a name for themselves as a spinner at the top nightclubs.

Scratch may face light competition when it debuts next year, but rhythm-game kingpin Activision has signaled its interest in entering the hip-hop space. Earlier this year, the Guitar Hero publisher filed an application to trademark the name DJ Hero with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

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