Former Yahoo! COO Dan Rosensweig will take over as CEO and president of RedOctane, overseeing Activision Blizzard’s best-selling Guitar Hero
As part of his job, Rosensweig will oversee Guitar Hero
's global operations including game development, hardware manufacturing, supply chain, logistics and marketing.
Kai Huang, former President and CEO of RedOctane, who along with his brother Charles Huang co-created Guitar Hero
with original developer Harmonix, will continue working at RedOctane reporting to Rosensweig.
Activision Blizzard chairman and CEO Bobby Kotick is also an ex-Yahoo! man and served on the company’s board at the same time as Rosensweig. More recently Rosensweig has been working at private equity firm Quadrangle Group, after leaving Yahoo! in late 2006.
The Guitar Hero
franchise was originally created by developer Harmonix, but the company was acquired by MTV Networks
in September 2006.
Activision retained the Guitar Hero
name and publisher RedOctane, with recent games being developed primarily by Tony Hawk
's creators NeverSoft.
Although some analysts have questioned whether the music game genre market has become oversaturated in recent months, Activision Blizzard has a range of titles planned this year, including a new mainline sequel and spin-offs featuring artists such as Metallica and Van Halen.
Spin-offs into other music genres such as DJ Hero
and Band Hero
are also apparently planned, as well as a new emphasis on online content and distribution.