Red Octane Interview April 27, 2007Posted by dpcough in Live Gamer Interviews.
Guitar Hero II has been released and the Xbox 360 owners have spoken with tons of titles being sold every day. There has been some controversy over high prices in downloadable content and even a petition for it. Unfortunately those questions about how much it costs to license games and they won’t talk about high prices (it makes sense they don’t talk about it, can’t give away inside secrets!) but I think the community made their voice heard loud enough about loud prices. But there’s still a lot to address with Guitar Hero III, wireless controllers, Rock Band, and more. So here’s the interview with Red Octane, the developers of the Guitar Hero Franchise.
Thanks for your time today for this interview Red Octane. I just wanted to say I’ve only played Guitar Hero a few times and know that I own it can agree with a lot of other people that it’s great. With the move to Xbox 360 you made some changes to the game by changing the guitar style to the Gibson X-Plorer, what was the reason for this change as the old model was fine?
Everyone enjoys variety and having different options, and with Xbox 360 being our initial entry onto next-plan platforms, it made perfect sense for us to have the X-Plorer shaped guitar. It’s another classic shape that a lot of fans are familiar with, and we added all the standard Xbox button features, along with other ports as well that we’re looking to integrate into the game play.
What’s in store for the next set of downloadable content?
We’ll likely see additional songs from the original Guitar Hero, though fans will also be excited to hear that we’ll have new exclusive songs available shortly as well. While we have yet to make an announcement on what bands and tracks we have lined up, it’s always been our intention to provide fresh new music and other fun content such as cool gamer themes and picture packs available on a consistent basis.
What are your plans for the future of the Guitar Hero franchise?
With Guitar Hero, the core game play will likely not change, though we have plans to integrate additional new exciting features, offer a variety of different shaped guitars, a multitude online options and exclusive content, and most importantly, continuing to secure the top bands/artists and songs to offer the most authentic game play experince possible to unleash that inner rock star.
Is there any differences now that the development of Guitar Hero has been shifted to Neversoft?
We can’t confirm any specifics at the moment, though it’s great to be working with Neversoft. They’re an extremely talented group of developers, and their experience working on blockbuster titles, music licensing, and knowledge of our culture only adds to their passion for working on our next title.
What’s your reaction to Harmonix’s upcoming title Rock Band. That title will feature four instruments contrary to your one.
We’re definitely excited to see how it all comes together, and in general, it’s great for the overall genre of rhythm–action titles as it’s only continuing to exponentially grow. Other than that, we can’t speak on behalf of other products outside of RedOctane.
How long does it take to re-record some of these songs in Guitar Hero?
It definitely depends. WaveGroup Sound is the group that re-records and tracks all of the songs for Guitar Hero. They have done a tremendous job for us, as they have a strict selection process for who they choose to do the tracking for each particular song. A lot of different efforts goes into the final product such as mixing, tracking, length of song, finding the right artists, specific model of instruments, etc. all to replicate the song as best they can. There is no set method to the madness. It’s just pure appreciation after it’s done and ready to play.
How’s the situation going in getting a wireless Guitar controller for Xbox 360?
Without giving away too much before we make an official announcement, we’re looking to have all of our guitars wireless for the next iteration of Guitar Hero. More specific details beyond that, you’ll just have to wait and see.
This is more of a personal question for me but when are AC/DC songs going to get put into the game?
That I can not say either, though we do have a lot of bands that we’ve been trying to go after for quite some time that will be in Guitar Hero III. Who are they? You’ll have to continue playing the guessing game for now, though it’s going to make our fans jaw drop for sure and will be be our hottest set list thus far.
With Activision now controlling you is there any difference?
RedOctane still fully operates as a videogame publisher, though we are now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Activision. We are continuing to do what we’ve always done, which is make great games, and now with much more added support.
A title Boom Boom Rocket released on Xbox Live Arcade this week, will you ever make a way to get the Guitar Hero controller compatible with it?
We haven’t tested our controller with that title, and have no plans to. When we begin our hardware production, we’re focused on designing and making the best products available for our fans and playable only on our titles, not worrying about anyone elses. The rest falls into place.
Once again thanks for your time today. Any closing comments?
Thanks for the interview Red Octane, look for many more to come.