Guitar Hero and Skylanders could return under Xbox ownership, says Bobby Kotick
Could Microsoft make more plastic peripherals?
Right now, the prevailing story in gaming is Xbox’s near-$70 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The buyout has major implications for labor and monopolies in the game industry, and it opens the gates for all sorts of franchises to potentially see new life.
In an interview with GamesBeat, Activision Blizzard boss Bobby Kotick — who will remain in that position despite deserved controversy — spoke about dormant games he’d like to see make a comeback. Notably, two of them require the production of plastic peripherals. “I wanted to make a new Guitar Hero for a while,” said Kotick. “But I don’t want to add teams to do manufacturing and supply chain and QA for manufacturing. I had a really cool vision for what the next Guitar Hero would be, and realized we don’t have the resources to do that.” Alongside that expressed desire to bring back Guitar Hero, Kotick also mentioned Skylanders. That toys-to-life title ended production in 2018, but Kotick says Microsoft might be able to bring it back with its resources.
Aside from perhaps Nintendo’s line of Amiibo figures (which Kotick could be calling out), the era of plastic add-ons for games has largely come to a close. A new Guitar Hero would be possible, but it would necessitate a new version of the guitar controller for players to hold. Skylanders was played by tapping individual plastic figures for each character, not unlike the aforementioned Amiibos. In both cases, the ongoing chip shortage is an obstacle in the manufacturing process.
For those who held onto their plastic peripherals, Game Pass could be a great place to revisit those franchises. Xbox boss Phil Spencer has already stated that the service will receive “as many Activision Blizzard games” as possible.