Activision to stick to "Guitar Hero" song price

SANTA MONICA, California Thu Jul 12, 2007 10:16pm BST

Guitarist Slash walks off stage at the end of the presentation of the new Activision game Guitar Hero III during the E3 Media and Business Summit in Santa Monica, California July 11, 2007. Activision said on Thursday it had sold more than 300,000 downloadable song packs for its hit ''Guitar Hero II'' music game. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

Guitarist Slash walks off stage at the end of the presentation of the new Activision game Guitar Hero III during the E3 Media and Business Summit in Santa Monica, California July 11, 2007. Activision said on Thursday it had sold more than 300,000 downloadable song packs for its hit ''Guitar Hero II'' music game.

Credit: Reuters/Mario Anzuoni

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SANTA MONICA, California (Reuters) - Activision Inc. (ATVI.O) said on Thursday it had sold more than 300,000 downloadable song packs for its hit "Guitar Hero II" music game, giving it confidence it will not have to lower prices despite outrage at the cost among some game fans.

"It's been a tremendous success for us," said Dusty Welch, head of publishing for Red Octane, a "Guitar Hero" developer that was bought by Activision last year. "Demand seems to be insatiable."

In the "Guitar Hero" games, players hit colored buttons on a guitar-shaped controller in time to rock songs playing on the screen. The ability to sell additional songs online allows Activision to continue to profit from the games after players have completed the original songs.

Activision began offering three packs of three songs each in April priced at $6.25, but gamers quickly took to online forums and blogs to vent their anger at the cost.

Despite the outcry, Welch said the fact that Activision had sold more than 300,000 song packs indicated that current prices were "very attractive and desirable for consumers."

"We do actively look at and monitor the message boards. We do listen, and for us, it's about offering even better music at current price points to get consumers excited about."

Shares in Activision rose 4 cents, or 0.2 percent, to $19.29 on the Nasdaq.

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