The Guitar Hero games make up one of the most successful videogame franchises in the world, with an installed user base of over 15 million unique households and sales in excess of $2 billion. By all appearances the game would seem to be the embodiment of mainstream success, yet Griffith says he expects DJ Hero to go beyond even that.
"[DJ Hero] is certainly hitting a more mainstream and expanded audience from Guitar Hero. I think it will build on what Guitar Hero has been able to do," he said in an interview with GamesIndustry. "If you look at what our Guitar Hero franchise has achieved, we now have 15 million households that are active Guitar Hero users and we continue to satisfy them with more experiences and the chance to indulge in more music and gameplay."
"But outside of those 15 million household's, there's another 300 million that haven't for one reason or another bought Guitar Hero yet. One of those reasons is we're not reaching new genres and new music audiences in a way that DJ Hero allows us to accomplish," he continued. "DJ Hero is going to be expansive to the franchise and be particularly exciting for Europe where that genre of music is arguably more important than it is elsewhere."
He added that while it's "too early to say" whether future versions of DJ Hero will be branded in a fashion similar to that of Guitar Hero: Aerosmith or Guitar Hero: Metallica, Activision does have deals in place with Jay-Z and Eminem, and that "a special SKU which will come with two discs" is also being released.
I'm having a hard time seeing a game based on "turntablism" being more mainstream than one with a focus on guitars. Maybe that's a reflection of my age and tastes, but I can't recall ever in my life seeing someone playing the air turntable. DJ Hero is scheduled for release on October 27 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 2 and 3, and Wii.