Rocksmith 2014 Delisting

It is no surprise Rocksmith 2014 is delisting, Rocksmith1 was delisted 10 years after release, and the various Rocksmith 1 DLCs followed the same pattern. It had therefor been anticipated in the community for quite a long time that the sequence game, Rocksmith 2014, would follow the same pattern.

Even though the game is called Rocksmith 2014, it was released in October of 2013, meaning that October 2023 will mark its tenth aniversary, and much as expected, a few weeks ago Ubisoft made an official announcement that it would delist Rocksmith 2014 from Steam and other digital stores in October, and that delisting of its DLCs would start as well.

But nobody in the community did forsee that the first DLCs would delist already late September. Yes you read correctly. When writing this its been less than 24 hours since I was made aware that Smashing Pumpkins - Cherub Rock DLC along with a dosin others have been delisted.

Why is Cherub Rock the DLC everybody talks about?

Shortly after the game was released, somebody had found a way to make custom DLCs, and how to get them loaded in the game. For the game to recognize the custom DLC, an AppID from an official DLC was needed, and the community quickly agreed on Cherub Rock. That means buying this DLC would unlock a pletora of custom made DLCs, a listing that now counts in the vicinity of 70.000 downloadable songs. The above decision probably made Cherub Rock the most selling DLC all time for Rocksmith 2014.

Reasons and reasoning

Without direct inside information, its hard to say exactly the reason and reasoning for the delistings and if license renewal could have been an option, but one thing is for sure is that Ubisoft wants to focus on their new music product, Rocksmith+, instead of keeping alive licenses for the older games. And I can completely understand this. The older games relied on a retail license of some sort, with one time sales keep forever kind of deals. After the bulk of those interested have bought these DLCs, it can become costly to maintain them for a limited and constantly shrinking market, the same goes to maintain code for a game that most likely doesn’t make enough money anymore to defend the salary to code maintainers.

The way forward

By letting these licenses expire, Ubisoft team can use the same resources getting more licenses for Rocksmith+, which in turn will make Rocksmith+ more attractive and slowly silence the critiques that insists Rocksmith+ doesn’t include the music they want. Since the one year mark of Rocksmith+ in early September we seen a big boost in new songs, including near to full Best Of albums from Sepultura, Twisted Sisters, and more.

The delisting will not be the end of neither Rocksmith 2014 nor custom DLCs. The community is huge and still active, and new ways to inject customs will come.

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