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Guitar Hero co-creator sees mobile replacing consoles

By James Brightman

Guitar Hero co-creator sees mobile replacing consoles

Tue 06 Nov 2012 3:58pm GMT / 10:58am EST / 7:58am PST

His new controller syncs up with phones for a console-like experience on your TV

Guitar Hero's time in the spotlight is long since over, but co-creator Charles Huang has his sights set on what he believes will be the next big phenomenon: mobile phones as full living room gaming experiences. With Green Throttle Games, a 12-person startup, Huang is looking to launch a special game controller next year that leverages Android smartphones and tablets. The controller connects wirelessly to your Android device, which can be plugged into an HDTV with a cable.

Green Throttle Games is the latest company, following Ouya and MOGA, to look to Android as a console alternative. “Mobile gaming is exploding, and new smart devices are becoming powerful alternatives to traditional consoles,” Huang told GamesBeat. “We just need a simple and fun way for people to play games both on the go and on the couch. Our mission is to create great game experiences that bring people together - a big-screen experience where you can just start playing games on a television, as simple as that.”

Huang and company will be offering a software development kit to enable developers to adapt their games to work with the controller. Additionally, Green Throttle Games plans to partner with game companies to make its own first-party games that will allow for two-player action on the same TV screen.

“We want to change the phone into a full console experience so you can enjoy first-person shooter games and racing games,” Huang continued. “You don't need the game console for that. We are reimagining games for the living room.”

Ultimately, Huang sees his controller as something that could disrupt the traditional $60 console game business. “Publishers might have a vested interest in the $60 game, but developers might be able to see what is possible,” said Huang. “The television wars are coming. There is a global set of players.”

There are plenty of people who don't think phones can be used to replace consoles in this way, but Huang doesn't mind the skepticism at all.

“With Guitar Hero, there was a lot of skepticism,” he said. “I feel more comfortable with skepticism. If it were obvious, lots of people would do it. But the trends in the industry are moving this way. It is on an inevitable path. We are doing the next evolution.”

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I have to wonder what happened with the whole Guitar Hero situation - a mixture of greed and over development that decimated a loyal player-base. Now in 2012/13 and I can understand looking at the mobile as a new territory to rash may be in vogue - I just wonder if the players will want to deal with the traditional developer environment, or will cast this aside!

Posted:3 years ago


Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,523 3,225 1.3
So what happens when the market has 8-10 different mobile phone controllers? Isn't that going to create a lot of incompatible proprietary problems for an open platform? You need a MOGA for some games, a Ouya for others and who knows what else will show up.

Posted:3 years ago


Dave Wolfe Game Developer, Cosmic Games

64 30 0.5
@Jim Android has a standard gamepad API so there shouldn't be any compatibility issues.

Posted:3 years ago


Brett Rector Producer, LucasArts

5 1 0.2
Mobile devices/gaming will compliment consoles. I'm tired of hearing this nonsense about how mobile gaming will replace console gaming.

Posted:3 years ago


Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,611 1,686 0.6
Meh. I still use my N-Gage QD, so I have no use for any of this mobile controller stuff...

Posted:3 years ago


Alfonso Sexto Lead Tester, Ubisoft Germany

1,166 1,297 1.1
"Mobile Crash 13" ??

Posted:3 years ago


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