Harmonix's hope that low sales of Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock were caused by anticipation surrounding Rock Band 3 have been dashed this morning by official UK sales figures.
According to UKIE, Rock Band 3 sold just 7386 units for the week ending 30th October. That breaks down into 5318 Xbox 360 copies, 1555 PS3 copies and 295 Wii copies.
As a result, Harmonix's tour de force spent a debut week at 26th in the UK all-formats top 40. Rival Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock finished one place below in 27th.
But Activision's game had a much better start, entering the chart in sixth before going on to place 14th, 22nd and 21st in subsequent weeks. In the US, first-week GH:WOR sales were reported to be 86,000.
On Friday Harmonix told Eurogamer "the early read" was that people were "waiting for our game [Rock Band 3]", which was perhaps why GH:WOR struggled to penetrate the market in a way the series once could.
"I'm not an analyst," RB3 project director Daniel Sussman added. "I know that as a game player I'm the type of gamer that would wait and spend my money on Rock Band 3.
"It's possible that sales of other games in the category are down because people are waiting to spend their money on Rock Band 3. That's what I hope anyway!"
Judging by UK the performance of Rock Band 3, Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock and DJ Hero 2, the writing appears to be on the wall for the once prosperous music genre. Certainly we're a long way from 2008, a year in which Guitar Hero III managed to shift 3.5 million copies in two months.
The declaration by Harmonix boss Alex Rigopulos earlier this year that "I absolutely do not believe that rhythm-action gaming has reached its peak" may come back to haunt him.