It looks like uber-publisher Activision is cleaning house and readying themselves for something of a development overhaul, which arguably started with Raven Soft's downsizing, but continues today with the scrapping of the True Crime
reboot that was being handled by Vancouver-based United Front Games (ModNation Racers), and the disbanding of the Guitar Hero franchise.
(registration required) reports on comments made in a new earnings release from Acti: "Due to continued declines in the music genre, the company will disband Activision Publishing's Guitar Hero business unit and discontinue development on its Guitar Hero game for 2011," the publisher said in a statement, adding that "the company also will stop development on True Crime: Hong Kong".
Clarifying the halt on development of True Crime, which was to make a reformed appearance at the upcoming Game Developer's Conference, Eric Hirshberg, Activision's Publishing CEO, said that "it just wasn't going to be good enough", and cited the best in the biz being the only games that can perform well commercially in the open-world genre.
"The day I arrived at [Activision] I said that I believed the best way to achieve commercial success was to provide gamers with the highest possible creative quality," he said. "The decision to stop production on True Crime is based solely on that belief."
This comes ahead of a rumoured announcement coming this Friday in the US (Saturday for Australia) from the publisher, where they will reveal an "exciting" new technology. We're also yet to hear from Halo-creators Bungie who signed a 10-year deal with Activision; ending their exclusive relationship with Microsoft, as well as Resistance-creators Insomniac who the publisher has also brought on-board.
Stay tuned for details of the forthcoming announcement and any other major shifts at the world's biggest third-party publisher.