Activision: Guitar Hero 5 launch 'probably' franchise's best, DLC sales getting 'interesting' [update 2]

If you want to know anything about Guitar Hero, you talk to Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Activision's Guitar Hero division. (Yeah, it has its own division.) Speaking to GI.biz, Rosensweig offered -- rather candidly, we might add -- some insight into the performance of Activision's latest, Guitar Hero 5, and its DLC.

While one might assume that a series' strength starts to wane once it gets around to having the number "5" in its title, that's apparently not the case for Guitar Hero. Rosensweig claims that "the public report suggests that we've outsold 2/2.5/3-to-1 over Rock Band ... and we've probably sold more copies of Guitar Hero 5 than any other Guitar Hero game at launch." Sure, that's a pretty big probably, but Guitar Hero 5 is "fun as hell," after all -- and advertising the game with Playboy Bunnies probably didn't hurt sales either.

As for DLC, Rosensweig suggests that it's generating a ton of revenue for the franchise -- funny how that happens when you start to stick to a regular release schedule -- as users appear eager to expand their playable music libraries. While Activision doesn't release actual figures, Rosensweig touts that "each month [in DLC sales] is a record versus the previous month, and it's getting to the point of being interesting." Heck, what'll be really interesting is seeing how much of this financial success makes its way into Kotick's bonus for 2009 ...

Update 2: Activision has clarified Rosenweig's statements, saying he was, "Speaking only about Europe. The specific public report he is referring to is the September Charttrack data. For the month of September, GH5 outsold The Beatles: Rock Band by nearly 2-to-1 in the U.K."

Update: Dan Rosensweig's "2/2.5/3-to-1" sales comparison between Guitar Hero and Rock Band was a bit ambiguous (Europe? North America? Worldwide?), so we've contacted Activision for clarification.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.