CES 2009: Activision's Keyno-thing of interest

Activision's CES keynote should have been titled "Remedial Gaming 101: A History of Gaming." Activision Publishing CEO Mike Griffith took us through a not-so-brief history of gaming, from Pong to Pac-Man to "even games that used to feature trackballs, and yes, even joysticks." Although, that's not the point when the chap in the photo above fell asleep -- that happened much earlier.

Oddly, Activision didn't manage to fit in a single plug for its upcoming game Prototype, which was apparently left out on the show floor for this one. No banners, no teaser, not even a still. Instead the stage was littered with games from 2008: Call of Duty: World at War, Spider-Man: Web of Shadows, Madagascar 2, Quantum of Solace, Guitar Hero: World Tour, and so on. It was deja vu, and we found ourselves literally checking our badges to make sure we weren't at E3 2008. Note to Activision: You've got a captive audience sitting in seats and (mostly) paying attention -- take advantage of 'em!

The keynote nearly left 2009 untouched completely, but finally did get around to a quartet of unnamed Neversoft dudes wailing their way through "Fuel" in Guitar Hero: Metallica. Yes, the double kick-pedals were on display (see below). "That's entertainment!" declared Griffith when he reclaimed the stage.

Other than the history of gaming, the entire event focused on a self-congratulatory celebration of Guitar Hero. The show opened with the faux "Bike Hero" video, and then Griffith joked of the real franchise, "The lawyers tell me I can't call it a guitar, it's a video game guitar controller." (We assume this has something to do with a litigious little company called Gibson). Griffith proceeded to explain that Guitar Hero isn't just music, it's entertainment; and video games are poised to trump all other forms of entertainment in the future. See chart for unassailable proof of said phenomenon:

So, when Mike Griffith becomes your actual robotic entertainment overlord, just remember: You heard it here first.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.