SPOnG’s just had word from RedOctane’s PR rep in the UK, who was more than happy to inform us that Guitar Hero II will get a November release in Europe, following shortly after its US release on November 7. In fact, we would almost go so far as to say he was genuinely overjoyed. It seems the sudden influx of Activision wonga is being used to ensure the whole world can rock out with GHII this Xmas.
And while it seems to be the default setting with PR types to be overjoyed about how brilliant
all the games they promote are, we couldn’t help but share in the joy on this occasion, as this news has so far brightened up an otherwise glum Tuesday up here in SPOnG’s malfunctioning Scottish office. Yes that’s right, some of us have decamped to the ‘dreich’ town of Edinburgh this week to cover the Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival.
The fact that we will get hold of Guitar Hero II before Christmas is super news for the air guitar aficionados in the office and for fans everywhere of one of SPOnG’s favourite games of the last year. We were previously a tad concerned about there being a repeat of last year’s annoying Euro delay – which put back the release of the first game to spring 2006 in Europe, whilst our American brethren had been rocking out to it for almost six months by that time.
“We’re absolutely overjoyed to be able to announce that the European release is as close to the US street date we can possibly make it,” says Dave Noble, business development director, RedOctane. “RedOctane is now in a position to be able to deliver Guitar Hero II to games players all over the world at roughly the same time – and we’re committed to ensuring the widest possible range of tunes to anyone with a Guitar Hero Gibson SG controller.”
Guitar Hero II will be delivered either as a bundle with the classic replica Gibson SG controller, or as a stand-alone disc for anyone who already has Guitar Hero.
So, as the PR fella wouldn’t be more specific than November, let’s speculate as to an exact date. Its US release date is confirmed already as November 7, which is a Tuesday. The next Friday - the 10th - is too close for a Euro release, particularly if you’re shipping several hundred thousand plastic guitars across America. Remember, there’s currently only one manufacturer in the whole wide world making these things, and it’s natural to assume the US will get the lion’s share of the initial stock.
So, the following Friday is the 17th. But hold on, there’s a little mega-computer thing called the PlayStation 3 coming out on that day. Given GHII deserves a stack of recognition, there is no way at all that anyone in their right mind would launch a PlayStation 2 triple-A title on that date.
Which leaves the 24th - the last Friday in November, and traditionally the last date retail will accept new software in time for Christmas. (Sure, there are exceptions, such as Xbox 360, but it’s very, very rare).
So November 24 is looking like the only reasonable date for launch. In fact we are so confident of this, that if it’s not
, SPOnG will donate £1000 to assist Jimmy, the poor ol' Guitar Hero maniac from Omaha who recently snapped his knee playing the game. See more on the daft bugger’s plight at guitarherobrokemyknee.com
If anybody can top daft apoth Jimmy in terms of videogaming injuries, then please tell us in the forums!