Activision saw fit to shutter development to their Guitar Hero, DJ Hero and True Crime franchises earlier this February. In addition to putting people out of work, Activision's decision to scale back priorities to "three big, huge monster" franchises also put the future for said series on ice.
However, hope is may not be lost in the case of Guitar Hero. Dan Winters, Activision's VP of developer relations and acquisitions, explains to GamesIndustry.biz that his company is not necessarily pulling Guitar Hero out of the music game market, and will in fact continue to sustain the brand:
"Actually, just to clarify, we're just putting Guitar Hero on hiatus, we're not ending it. We're releasing products out of the vault--we'll continue to sustain the channel, the brand won't go away. We're just not making a new one for next year, that's all."
That's a bit different from the official line earlier this year confirming the Guitar Hero business will "disbanded" as a result of the seriously declining music genre, discontinuing any development on a Guitar Hero game for this year.
Winters also shed some light on the True Crime cancellation. While Winters acknowledges developer UFG had a good thing going with the new title, the publisher had nagging concerns that it ultimately wouldn't be able to compete against the new gold standard in open-world action adventure titles, specifically games like Red Dead Redemption.
As mentioned earlier, Activision would instead opt to "focus disproportionately" on its key franchises instead of pushing ahead with titles like True Crime. You guessed right if you thought Call of Duty was one of the important series, but you may be surprised to learn that the publisher is deeming the Spyro the Dragon revival another major pillar for 2011. Its upcoming Bungie-developed IP will round out its lineup.