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Monday April 2, 2007 6:57 pm

Rock Band - Make Room for the Peripherals

Guitar Hero Kid As we had guessed a few times before, MTV, Harmonix and EA are working together to suck the Guitar Hero well dry. The news today is that these three companies will be working together to produce Rock Band, a GH-like game that will include new peripherals that will let you drum, sing, and of course strum your way to rockstar fame. Looks like it’s time to make some more room in your home for gaming peripherals - given that the Guitar Hero guitar is nearly real-guitar sized, we can only imagine how big the Rock Band drum set is going to be… or perhaps they’ll build some nifty motion-sensing drumsticks?

With online play, killer peripherals, and a pretty hot looking list of record labels signing on, this game could be huge… both in the metaphorical AND physical sense. Hopefully the controller(s) won’t make the game as expensive as a new console, though. Rock Band is currently announced for the PS3 and Xbox 360 although developers have hinted that a Wii version is also in the works.

Click the jump for the full press release…

Read More | USA Today

HARMONIX, MTV: MUSIC TELEVISION AND EA ANNOUNCE ROCK BAND - THE ULTIMATE INTERACTIVE MUSIC VIDEOGAME EXPERIENCE
Creators of Guitar Hero™ Franchise Partners with Major Record Labels and Music Publishers for Unprecedented Access to Artist Catalogs and Original Masters for New Game

CAMBRIDGE, MA - April 2, 2007 - Harmonix, developer of the blockbuster Guitar Hero™ franchise, MTV: Music Television, a division of MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), and Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: ERTS) today announced Rock Band, an all-new platform for music fans and gamers to interact with music like never before. Rock Band will allow gamers to perform music from the world’s biggest rock artists with their friends as a virtual band using drum, bass/lead guitar and microphone peripherals, in addition to offering deep online connectivity. Built on unprecedented deals with the world’s biggest record labels and music publishers, the music featured in Rock Band will span all genres of rock and include many of the master recordings from the biggest songs and artists of all time. Rock Band is slated for release on PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system and Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft® in holiday 2007.

The leading music publishers - EMI Music Publishing and Warner/Chappell Music - are allowing unrivaled access to their catalogs of incredible songs for use in Rock Band. The record labels - EMI Music, Hollywood Records, Sony BMG Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group’s Universal Music Enterprises and Warner Music Group’s Rhino Entertainment - have agreed to supply master recordings by their artists for use in the game.

“Harmonix was founded to create new ways for everyone to experience the pleasure and satisfaction that comes from playing music. Our work on Guitar Hero was an instrumental step toward that goal,” stated Alex Rigopulos, co-founder and CEO of Harmonix. “But Rock Band is Harmonix’s most ambitious project to date, and it will take music gameplay to an entirely new level. MTV has given us the freedom and the resources to really swing for the fences and make the game we’ve always wanted to make.”

“Our vision for Rock Band is to completely change the way people interact with and enjoy the music they love,” said Jeff Yapp, EVP, MTV Program Enterprises. “By joining forces with EA and the music industry’s largest record labels and publishers, we are striving to create a groundbreaking new platform that allows people to connect with their favorite music and artists in ways they never have before.”

“Rock Band is a revolutionary new way for gamers and music fans to experience music,” said David DeMartini, said vice president and general manager of EA Partners. “The team at EA Partners is thrilled to help MTV and Harmonix launch this incredible game on the global stage and get it into the hands of gamers worldwide.”

As previously announced, Electronic Arts will serve as the exclusive distribution and marketing partner for Rock Band, managing distribution for the game in US, Europe and Australia.

For more information on Rock Band and Harmonix Music Systems please visit www.rockbandgame.com and www.harmonixmusic.com.

About MTV Networks:
MTV Networks, a unit of Viacom (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), is one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all media platforms. MTV Networks, with 135 channels worldwide, owns and operates the following television programming services - MTV: MUSIC TELEVISION, MTV2, VH1, mtvU, NICKELODEON, NICK at NITE, COMEDY CENTRAL, TV LAND, SPIKE TV, CMT, NOGGIN/THE N, VH1 CLASSIC, LOGO, MTVN INTERNATIONAL and THE DIGITAL SUITE FROM MTV NETWORKS, a package of 13 digital services, all of these networks trademarks of MTV Networks. MTV Networks connects with its audiences through its robust consumer products businesses and its more than 200 interactive properties worldwide, including online, broadband, wireless and interactive television services and also has licensing agreements, joint ventures, and syndication deals whereby all of its programming services can be seen worldwide.

About MTV Games:
MTV Games is dedicated to creating, marketing and publishing high-quality, innovative interactive products that are relevant to the MTV audience and complements the core values of the MTV Networks brands.

About Harmonix Music Systems, Inc:
Harmonix Music Systems, Inc., based in Cambridge, MA, and established in 1995, is the leading developer of groundbreaking music-oriented videogames. The company pioneered music and rhythm gaming in the US with the introduction of Frequency in 2001 and Amplitude in 2003. Harmonix was founded by Alex Rigopulos and Eran Egozy, who formed the company to invent new ways for non-musicians to experience the unique joy that comes from making music. Harmonix is best known as the creator of blockbuster titles Guitar Hero™ and Guitar Hero II™, the Karaoke Revolution series of singing games, and EyeToy: Antigrav. For more information please visit: http://www.harmonixmusic.com.

About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world’s leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, the company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for videogame systems, personal computers, cellular handsets and the Internet. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTSTM, EATM, EA SPORTS BIGTM and POGOTM. In fiscal 2006, EA posted revenue of $2.95 billion and had 27 titles that sold more than one million copies. EA’s homepage and online game site is www.ea.com. More information about EA’s products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://info.ea.com.
Guitar Hero II © 2006 RedOctane, Inc. Guitar Hero is a trademark and RedOctane is a registered trademark of RedOctane, Inc. All rights reserved. Game code © 2007 Harmonix Music Systems, Inc. Developed by Harmonix Music Systems.

Electronic Arts, EA, EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS BIG and POGO are trademarks or registered trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. “PlayStation”, “PLAYSTATION”, and the “PS” Family logo are registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. EyeToy is a trademark of Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. Microsoft, Xbox and Xbox 360 are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

MTV Contact:
Jeff Castaneda
MTV Communications
jeff.castaneda@mtvstaff.com
(212) 846-6774

EA Contact:
Bryce Baer
Electronic Arts
bbaer@ea.com
(650) 867-5208

Harmonix Media Contact:
Tracie Snitker
Reverb Communications
Tracie@reverbinc.com
(209) 586-1495 x104

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