A bit of digging at the latest NPD results for the North American games market has shown that revenues generated by leading music genre brands Guitar Hero and Rock Band have fallen 49 per cent year-on-year over the last 12 months.
Gamasutra reports that June was the second month on the trot that neither franchise managed to trouble the software Top 20. The last time this happened was way back in October 2007 – immediately before the release of Guitar Hero II on PS2.
The revenue fall comes despite an increase in the number of SKUs released in both series at retail. Rock Band has been the hardest hit, suffering a 67 per cent fall, whilst Guitar Hero revenues have fallen 34 per cent.
However, it is worth nothing that both brands – and Rock Band in particular – are doing good business on the digital front, with numerous track packs being released on Xbox Live and PSN.
EA will certainly be hoping that the September release of The Beatles: Rock Band will turn the tide, and the industry as a whole will be keeping a close eye on how a brand as rich as The Beatles can impact the games space.
It will also be banking on a positive upturn as a result of its recent deal to transform Rock band into a fully-fledged content portal.