Guitar Hero to go online?

RedOctane talks next-gen.

RedOctane president Kai Huang says we can expect the publisher's music games on next-generation consoles to include downloadable content and online play.

"Online is definitely going to be a huge component of what we're planning," Huang told Next-Gen.biz, "whether that's downloading new music or characters or skins or online play features, those are the things that are really going to be the major changes for next-gen."

Huang also reiterated that RedOctane's exploring its options in terms of new peripherals - and not just guitars either.

Additional "Hero" games that draw on other musical instrument peripherals are "the next logical step" he reckons, although he didn't discuss specifics.

As for the guitars, RedOctane's currently looking at different colours, shapes, and higher-end versions "more closely aligned with a real guitar". Apparently that doesn't rule out mahogany guitars either.

RedOctane, recently bought out by Activision, has certainly been making big noises about the future of its music games ever since Harmonix's PS2 Guitar Hero first came out - with a sequel due out later this year with an expanded tracklist and co-op options, and plenty of chatter about generic off-shoots and so on.

Indeed, prior to the original game's UK release, RedOctane's Kelly Sumner told trade magazine MCV that we could even expect a country Guitar Hero as the publisher recalibrated after the game's success - although Harmonix didn't seem to know much about that when we spoke to them at E3.

"I think that's all maybe stuff that's been proposed," producer Daniel Sussman told us, "but that's about it. We're certainly not making a country Guitar Hero [at the moment]."

Whatever is going on, you can be sure we'll let you know when it starts edging its way toward Europe.

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