After a class action lawsuit, the company offered to refund frustrated gamers who lost access to a majority of the game's songs.
12 Feb, 2019FORTUNE.COM
As Activision Blizzard reportedly prepares to announce hundreds of layoffs on Tuesday, the company is also reaching into its pockets to compensate frustrated gamers who bought Guitar Hero Live and aren’t happy after they lost access to a majority of songs.
Guitar Hero Live, which was released in 2015, came with 42 base songs. Gamers were able to access hundreds more streaming tracks through a supplemental service called Guitar Hero TV, an always-on music video streaming service that let wannabe rockstars find challengers around the world.
Activision announced last June that it planned to wind down Guitar Hero TV by the end of the year. The music library was supported by Activision, and the decision to cut it off coincided as Activision’s licensing agreements were up, according to Polygon. That news prompted a class action lawsuit, which was voluntarily dismissed last month, according to Ars Technica.
It turns out, refunding a bunch of customers might be cheaper than letting the game rock on. Activision launched its refund offer in February for gamers who purchased Guitar Hero Live between December 1, 2017 and January 1, 2019. The company set a deadline of May 1 for people to submit a refund request form, along with a receipt or credit card statement that can be used to verify their purchase of Guitar Hero Live.
The refund offer is just the latest in a challenging few months for the video game company. Chief Financial Officer Spencer Neumann was terminated “for cause” in December, according to a regulatory filing. Neumann was named the new CFO of Netflix in January. Activision is also dealing with stagnant sales from some of its flagship titles, including Overwatch and Hearthstone.
Activision Blizzard stock closed the trading day down 7.6% on Monday ahead of the reported layoffs on Tuesday.