Why Rock Band and Guitar Hero were more successful than previous Harmonix games

Chatting with Gamesindustry.biz, Greg LoPiccolo, VP of Product Development for Harmonix, offered insight as to why Guitar Hero and Rock Band became so widely popular, while the company’s earlier rhythm games such as Frequency or Amplitude were unable to garner that same level of public interest.

“I remain really proud of them [Frequency and Amplitude] – I think they’re great games – but the thing we learned from those games is that an abstract concept is very hard for people to get their heads around.”

So then, what exactly made Guitar Hero and Rock Band more desirable?

“If we put an instrument in your hands, then you are able to make that mental leap. ‘Oh, I’m playing the part of a guitar player or a drummer, and this is what I am supposed to do.’ I think that was really what made it work.”

The comparison between the physical aspect of these music games and the simplistic nature of the Wii is made, and I couldn’t agree more. I feel like the more minimalistic controllers become, the better. Who’s with me?

Jordan Devore
Jordan is a founding member of Destructoid and poster of seemingly random pictures. They are anything but random.