Blur and DJ Hero got a Bum Rap, Not Failures

3 min read


Activision has insisted former Microsoft stablemate Bizzare Creations’ recently released action-racer Blur was not a flop, despite its initially disappointing sales.

They’d also like it to be known that the same applies to  DJ Hero – largely considered a failure on account of the meagre retail uptake in the week after release.

"The audience was split three ways," Activision’s Dan Amrich said of Blur which sold 31,000 copies in the US in May, in a blog post.

"Blur came out a week after Split/Second and the same day as ModNation Racers. I’m not sure what your budget looks like, but I can rarely afford to buy three games in eight days – nor do I have the time to play all of them at once anyway."

"Blur shipped 25th May in the US, 28th May in the UK. Since the June data is not yet available (and won’t be for a few more weeks), we are looking at one week of sales and no international data," he continued, calling NPD’s method’s a little outdated.

He compared the racing title’s performance with that of DJ Hero’s, a game he said benefited from a "long tail" – something Nintendo’s really familiar with.

"While big sales out of the gate are always preferred, a slow first week no longer means a death sentence. A perfect example: DJ Hero was dubbed a flop on its release too, but what it needed was time for its audience to find it, a price break, and positive word from both friends and reviews to circulate. October and November were soft, but after the holiday, DJ Hero had hit about 800,000 units; today it’s 1.2 million units and counting, all of which come with a turntable controller. That’s not a flop; that’s the long tail at work.”

"So to suggest a game is a failure because it didn’t sell hundreds of thousands of units in its first 168 hours is pretty ridiculous. June’s data will be very interesting to see, and I don’t expect to hear much about any victories it might represent, since it’s a less sexy story than ‘Blur failed in week one’. Bad news travels fast."

He added: "For what it’s worth, I played Blur a fair amount this weekend, both PS3 and 360, and it was smooth sailing for me. I have never logged on and found less than several hundred players in the lobby, eager to race. Hundreds to thousands of people playing online every day, stable servers, positive reviews…folks, this game is not a failure, and it’s an irresponsible disservice to use that word to describe Blur. All it’s really guilty of is coming in third in a three-way race. And that was just the first lap."

1.2 million units from DJ Hero? that’s not a flop – that’s pretty good business for an expensive peripheral-based game. I’m mighty impressed – and from the sounds of it its follow-up will do pretty good business too. As far as the quality of those games? We though both Blur and DJ Hero were pretty darn good.

Source : OneofSwords

Last Updated: July 8, 2010

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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