Numerous Japanese companies saw no potential in what became a world-conquering genre
Guitar Hero developer RedOctane has revealed that, when it was pitching the idea of home-based music games to various Japanese publishers, the company was told that the idea had nowhere to go.
"There were many music games that were being done in Japan. Dance Dance Revolution was the most popular that made its way into the US in 2002, and there were other music games including guitar-based games, drum-based games, you name it,” said RedOctane co-founder Kai Huang, speaking to DigitalSpy.
“The Japanese had a very vibrant category of music games. We approached the companies and asked them why don't you bring these games outside of Japan, and they basically said universally that we think music games won't sell.”
RedOctane is now celebrating its ten year anniversary as a company, some five years after it created its first console-based music game, Guitar Hero, and along with it a colossal, untapped market for game publishers.
Guitar Hero has recently found its brand name arrive in the arcades; an ironic full circle for a game widely thought to be based on Konami’s arcade title Guitar Freaks.
Huang, however, politely declined to mention which companies explicitly said that home-based music games wouldn’t work.
The RedOctane co-founded added that, when building Guitar Hero, Weezer’s ‘Dope Nose’ was the very first record to see its notes appear on the now-famous multicoloured highway.