There was a time when music games were among the biggest money-makers out there. Heck, it was only a couple of years ago. But now…

Although designers scaled back the number of music-based video games released in 2010 after the interactive music genre fell by nearly 50% in 2009, they might have to scale back again in 2011. The genre just isn't producing anymore; as an example, Viacom has sold Rock Band developer Harmonix, which is a definite indication that time may have run out on the once lucrative plastic instrument industry. Lower than expected sales of all those pricey music bundles make it plain that consumers are simply tired of the whole fad. The genre reached market saturation quite some time ago and ever since, most of their revenue had to come from downloadable content (i.e., add-on tracks, whole albums, etc.). According to Gamasutra analyst Matt Matthews, "sales of music games have dropped by more than a factor of five since 2008." The total haul for the genre in 2008 was over $1.6 billion; that fell to $870 million in 2009 and "short of a Christmas miracle, music games won't break $400 million for all of 2010."

I sort of hate to say this, but good. As great as some of those games were, I have to admit to being sick and tired of the craze. Maybe next year, I won't have the FedEx guy dropping off giant box after giant box of music hardware bundles…at first it's cool, after a while, it's just plain ridiculous.

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Clamedeus
Clamedeus
9 years ago

I never was able to get into those games, didn't appeal to me i guess.

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Me either. I can actually play the guitar so it's always felt like a waste of time to play on my own. But together with friends and family it's quite fun.

Bjorn77
Bjorn77
9 years ago

I thought it was more embarrassing then fun standing in the living room with a plastic guitar.

Danny007
Danny007
9 years ago

@Bjorn77 LOL, Don't make fun of me.

JackC8
JackC8
9 years ago

I play guitar too so being seen with a plastic toy (at age 46) never appealed to me.

Danny007
Danny007
9 years ago

Rock Band 3 and DJ Hero 2 were both given good reviews by critics though. Consumers don't want to put out there money for the same experience, just different music, every year. Rock Band 3 tried to solve this by adding the keyboard, but I don't know how that turned out. I myself did buy one music game this year.

Swavey
Swavey
9 years ago

I never much cared for these types of games either. I saw a commercial for DJ Hero 2 today that had a quote from psxextreme on it. Very nice to see guys. 🙂

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

I suspect the whole motion control craze is right behind it.

Bjorn77
Bjorn77
9 years ago

Indeed, it's a gimmick. Or they have to pull out some really really good games. Current games assortment is sub par.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

If that were the case the Wii would have died a long time ago. Obviously it has not.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

I think it has more to do with the near unstoppable and unprecedented rise in casual gamers transitioning to Call of Duty and on the flip side of that move, to Facebook games.

Alienange
Alienange
9 years ago

It's because the developers and publishers became desperate for the next big thing. When it was just a guitar and great tunes everyone loved it.

What we're being offered now is bundles of plastic instruments that cost nearly as much, if not more, than the console we bought to play them on. The cost isn't equaling the fun.

The only reason I've bought any music games in the past two years is because they drop in price at an alarming speed.

PAKINIPS
PAKINIPS
9 years ago

A good idea would have been to not bring one out every year, work on it a bit more, stop with the dlc

NoOneSpecial
NoOneSpecial
9 years ago

meh, it's not surprising. Musical games were more of a fad than anything, and yu can't really improve on it(except for new music or improved vusuals, i guess) you really just need one base and than keep on charging for new songs, but besides that, you can't stand to gain much.


Last edited by NoOneSpecial on 11/20/2010 12:09:42 PM

Snaaaake
Snaaaake
9 years ago

It's basically the same game with different music.
Of course one will eventually get tired of it if he is not a huge fan.

FPS is a different case though.

ThePoetRazel
ThePoetRazel
9 years ago

Here's an idea, stop trying to make us buy the same game again and again every year. If games like Killzone came out every year with little difference between installments we'd get tired of it. It's not rocket science.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

*cough* CoD *cough*


Last edited by Lawless SXE on 11/20/2010 4:13:51 PM

ThePoetRazel
ThePoetRazel
9 years ago

COD will go the same way of course. FPS games give a better online experience especially when it comes to playing with friends, this gives it some more longevity but not immortality by any means.


Last edited by ThePoetRazel on 11/21/2010 10:05:43 AM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Yeah I'm kind of tired of em too… I bought rock band 3 and dont get wrong it's an awesome fame and the piano was another good installment. But the underlying story is I've played it 2-3 times maybe. It was a waist of money in that regards. But after skipping rock band 2 I thought I'd give it another go… Honestly rock band 3 may be the first ps3 game that I've bought that I get rid of at some point… It just lost it's appeal and fun factor.

booze925
booze925
9 years ago

i still play guitar hero 3 and rock band 1 to this day.
i never saw the need to upgrade.

Fane1024
Fane1024
9 years ago

So you're the problem. 😉

RB3>RB2>RB1

Even disregarding the extremely high value of the number of songs available on each disc for $60 (or less), it is a mistake not to upgrade if you play RB even sporadically.

Naga
Naga
9 years ago

I play Jamlegend on the internet its quite fun and I would say pressing 1,2,3,4,5 on the keyboard is enjoyable.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

I am proud to say i have never owned one of these abominations. Learn to play a real guitar.

ctd669
ctd669
9 years ago

I feel the exact same way. I'm very proud to say I've never owned one either. I do own three REAL guitars tho and oh the shame I'd have felt if one of my buddies walked in on me w/ a plastic guitar while all my other REAL guitars were in their cases.
I don't know if it's me but there's somthing exhilarating about plugging in to a Marshall half stack and cranking the knob to 10 and figuring out that riff from that song u been trying to learn… as opposed to fake strumming on a toy and pressing some buttons.
It's just way more satisfying.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

It's not just you. Music and playing my guitars and bass are the only thing i enjoy more than gaming. I think if I had to choose between my hearing and eyesight, i would chose hearing. Can't live without music. I love my Gibson SG and my Ernieball Musicman Sting Ray. Nothing better than plugging my Ernieball into my Ampeg 8X10 and Ampeg SVT Classic head. Its like sex in my ears. LOL!

ctd669
ctd669
9 years ago

I'm right there with ya bud!! Nearly half of the space used on my PS3's 80gb HDD is music.
And I only have about 7gb of free space left.
(Damn, I need to upgrade my HDD!)
Needless to say my PS3 spends about as much time gaming as it does cranking tunes!
Oh and BTW I love my 93 Gibson Explorer w/ EMG's & my 87 American Standard Fender Strat also w/ SA EMG's for that David Gilmour vibe!
My Explorer is my baby tho. ;D

Dancemachine55
Dancemachine55
9 years ago

@ Jawknee

I am sick and tired of people telling us GH and RB gamers to "learn to play a real guitar". Truly sick of it.

If we wanted to spend hundreds of hours learning chords, tabs and whatnot for 1 or 2 songs over the course of a few months, I would. But I don't want to do that!!!

I enjoy picking up a plastic guitar and just having some fun playing some songs I like, cos I'm a gamer, not a musician.

Rock Band 3 is an excellent party game and one that my friends always want to play whenever they are over. You don't have to know how to play guitar or real keyboard, you just match the colour notes and enjoy the fun.

So please. No more comments about learning to play a real instrument. Playing Guitar Hero / Rock Band and playing a real guitar are two completely different things, and while some gamers realise this (not all unfortunately), I think its damn time musicians realised this too!!!

It's a game, you jump in and have fun, there's no steep learning curve, unless you want to learn the pro instruments and transition from gamer to musician. Some people like me like these music games, and there is no respect from anyone here.

McClane
McClane
9 years ago

@Dancemachine55:

My thoughts exactly, +1 for you

@ Jawknee:

Have you ever heard the phrase " To each its own" ??

leatherface
leatherface
9 years ago

my marshall goes to eleven

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

That's fine you go enjoy your plastic toys. I guess the untalented people should have a chance to play "guitar" too.


Last edited by Jawknee on 11/21/2010 1:43:35 PM

McClane
McClane
9 years ago

"I guess the untalented people should have a chance to play "guitar" too"

So according to your logic, gamers that enjoy music games are "untalented"??

*sigh* Hard to discuss something with such a short-minded person….

X_shadowkilla_X
X_shadowkilla_X
9 years ago

its because there is only so much variety that you can do in a music based game…and the difference are very little.

Oxvial
Oxvial
9 years ago

Great , now fps games please.

booze925
booze925
9 years ago

keep dreamin' buddy

Oxvial
Oxvial
9 years ago

better than live this fps flood nightmare.

Jawknee
Jawknee
9 years ago

Booze, it will happen. Its not a matter of if but when.

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

Ain't gonna happen. Where do you think all the casual and music (also pretty casual) gamers are 'graduating' to? FPS games are extremely accessible because they are aim, fire complexity games. I know that there is more to it than that online, but if you play the SP campaign on easy, it's generally very easy, which is perfect for that kind of gamer making the move towards more hardcore games. Of course they will be turned off by the online component where they get their a$$ handed to them along with a stream of expletives, but they have to learn somewhere.

But as much as I would love the FPS to decline to a more 'normal' level of popularity, I don't see it happening any time soon. People enjoy firing fake guns at fake enemies too much.

Qubex
Qubex
9 years ago

Lol Booze!

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

That's what happens when you milk something to death.

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
9 years ago

COD should be next

People gotta get bored of war games at some point.

eLLeJuss
eLLeJuss
9 years ago

Of course. They release like 5 of the same thing in 1 year. What would they expect?

DazeOfWar
DazeOfWar
9 years ago

Ya I pretty much tired out after Rock Band 2. Hell I'm even having a problem giving away the instruments.

rogers71
rogers71
9 years ago

Daze,
I would definitely take the RB2 instruments off your hands. PS3 id is Rogers71. Add me and we can talk.

DazeOfWar
DazeOfWar
9 years ago

Sorry I should have mentioned they were for the 360 version.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Well this is hardly surprising. They've oversaturated the market with these games, then supported them so heavily with DLC that it really does make buying the newest one superfluous, unless you are really into the genre. I suppose it is the same as any fad… People eventually just become bored with it. I just wish that would hurry up and happen to FPS, Motion Controls and MS in gaming…
Peace.

Fane1024
Fane1024
9 years ago

Given that these sales statistics are in dollars rather than units and that they do not include DLC (which has also decreased, but not as drastically), PART of the decline in sales is simply because in 2008 more people were buying instrument packs and now those people are only buying the game disc.

I, for instance, bought three full sets of instruments (2 X RB1 @ $99 each and RB2 @ $179) in 2008. In 2009, I bought TB:RB for $60. In 2010, I bought LEGO:RB for $10 and RB3 for $60. My enthusiasm for these games has not diminished at all, nor has my purchasing of DLC, but my retail spending has.

The oversaturation in 2009 certainly didn't help and it is clear that the "craze" has peaked, but the decline of music games is being overstated.

All you haters want to hate, but music games are still in better shape than JRPGs. 😉


Last edited by Fane1024 on 11/20/2010 4:40:04 PM

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
9 years ago

That isn't saying much. EVERY genre "is in better shape" than JRPGs.

Lawless SXE
Lawless SXE
9 years ago

Not funny Fane…

TheHighlander
TheHighlander
9 years ago

Indeed Lawless, indeed. Ben has a point too. However there is still life in the old JRPG yet, it's just not in the foreground any more, and a lot of it happens on the PSP. Games like Atelier Rorona show that it's not dead, but has moved to a more niche market status.

Dancemachine55
Dancemachine55
9 years ago

True bout people no longer buying the plastic instruments, cos most already have them. It's just the games people are grabbing now.

Like me, I got the GH World Tour and Rock Band 1 instrument kits. Last thing I got was the RB3 keyboard, and its heaps of fun to play the keyboard parts to Du Hast, Power of Love by Huey Lewis and Imagine by John Lennon.

Since the instruments have lasted and are still going strong, I see no need for more. And I see no need for Guitar Hero now that Rock Band 3 has covered everything, from pro instruments, to backwards support of DLC and previous disc entries.

Also Fane, you got guts saying that about JRPG's on a site that loves its JRPGs. Tread carefully my friend.