Guitar Hero R.I.P.I had no particular affection for Guitar Hero after the series split from Harmonix, but this is still a sad note:
...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.
That was from Activision's earnings release today. This shouldn't be a surprise, because Kotick definitely has a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) management style when it comes to franchises on life support. Thing is, though, he's going to wind up with only two games: Modern War and Fantasy War, so to speak.
All those franchises he nurtured to replace the ailing ones? There aren't any.
I've said this before (though not exactly), but Kotick isn't growing an orchard. He's drilling a well.
[Update: Chris Kohler has additional context here, including the first month sales figures for Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock, which were a spectacularly dismal 86,000 copies.]