Activision CEO Bobby Kotick spoke today at the Morgan Stanley Technology Conference about the challenges facing his company, responding to concerns about growth on a few of its key franchises, like Call of Duty and Guitar Hero. While Kotick was wise to avoid revealing specifics, he may have let slip the next artist-focused Guitar Hero title. If true, it may be a very good fit.
Early in the Q&A session, Kotick talked about opportunities for new platforms and "line extensions" for the Guitar Hero franchise, which we can theorise mean things like Guitar Hero: On Tour for portables and DJ Hero. Kotick also talked about bands that were "proprietary to our format," including Aerosmith.
Kotick later talked about Aerosmith again, in response to a line of questioning about artists finding themselves making big bucks off Guitar Hero tracks. He said of the opportunity, "If we're [...]creating a whole new group of consumers, six to eleven year old consumers, who are being exposed to Aerosmith for the first time or Van Halen for the first time, whatever that might be we need to capture much more of that upside opportunity."
Now, Kotick may just be a big fan of Eddie Van Halen, but the profits to be had selling a licensed Kramer 5150 Guitar Hero guitar controller may have just gotten Bobby a bit too excited. Based on what the Activision CEO said, expect more artist-only titles, and consider Van Halen a fairly safe bet.