Harmonix Music Systems

  1. Viacom Told to Pay Hundreds of Millions to 'Rock Band' Developer Harmonix

    July 18, 2013 4:17 AM EDT It's looking grim for Viacom in a dispute over payments to former Harmonix shareholders. This court battle seems to demand more attention given the newfound appetite for M&A in the entertainment sector and the amount of money at stake ...

  2. Viacom Ordered To Pay $300 Million Over 'Rock Band' Acquisition

    August 13, 2012 5:26 PM EDT Viacom has suffered a $300 million loss in a Delaware court tied to its 2006 acquisition of Harmonix, the studio that created the Rock Band video games. Although Viacom sold Harmonix in 2010 , it is still paying for the decision to buy the game st ...

  3. Viacom First Quarter Earnings Shredded by 'Rock Band' Settlement

    February 03, 2012 7:00 AM EST NEW YORK (AP) - Viacom Inc., the owner of Paramount Pictures, MTV and Comedy Central, on Thursday posted a 65 percent drop in net income for the latest quarter, as it took a charge related to the "Rock Band" series of video games. Revenu ...

  4. Viacom Owes $383 Million To Harmonix in 'Rock Band' Dispute Arbitrators Say

    December 28, 2011 7:00 AM EST After already paying $150 million to former shareholders of Harmonix, arbitrators have determined that Viacom owes an additional $383 million to the video game company that created Rock Band, according to a regulatory filing on Tuesday. The revela ...

  5. Viacom Demands to Be Repaid $131 Million From Shareholders of 'Rock Band' Maker

    September 19, 2011 3:30 PM EDT Shareholder lawsuits against big corporations are quite common. But rarely does a corporation turn around and sue its stockholders. That's what's happening at Viacom, which on Friday sued former stockholders of ex-subsidiary Harmonix Mus ...

  6. Ubisoft Announces Rocksmith Game

    March 15, 2011 1:50 PM EDT Just weeks after Activision closed the book on Guitar Hero, rival videogame publisher Ubisoft announced plans to introduce a new band-based music game called Rocksmith. The new game hopes to set itself apart by using a real guitar as its controlle ...

  7. Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos' First Interview Since MTV Sold Rock Band

    February 28, 2011 12:05 AM EST About two months ago, MTV and parent company Viacom sold off its Harmonix subsidiary-the videogame development unit responsible for the Rock Band and Dance Central franchises that it acquired in 2006 for $175 million. It's been a difficult ti ...

  8. Dance Games Exploding As Guitar-Based Games Dwindle

    February 15, 2011 11:26 AM EST The market for guitar-based music games may be in the gutter, but dance games are faring far better, based on the quarterly results of one of the major publishes of such games. Ubisoft, which publishes such dance games as the "Just Dance" ...

  9. Guitar Zero: Activision Kills Guitar Hero Franchise

    February 09, 2011 6:49 PM EST The game that created the modern music game as we know it is no more: During its quarterly earnings conference call today. Activision revealed that it has cancelled the planned 2011 installment of the "Guitar Hero" franchise and the enti ...

  10. Did Viacom Sell Rock Band Developer Harmonix for $50?

    January 04, 2011 12:00 AM EST File this under "who knows?" but Peter Kafka over at All Things Digital's Media Memo blog is reporting that Viacom sold its Rock Band developer unit Harmonix late last year for as little as $50. Now that's a hook-worthy but som ...

  11. Analysis: Viacom's Sale of Harmonix Is No Surprise

    December 27, 2010 12:00 AM EST Viacom's decision to sell video game maker Harmonix last week may have seemed out of the ordinary, but the odds of success are often stacked against many such acquisitions. Last week, Viacom sold Harmonix to investment firm Columbus Nova for ...

  12. Viacom Parts Ways With Rock Band

    December 23, 2010 12:00 AM EST Viacom Inc has sold Harmonix Music Systems, the developer behind the Rock Band franchise, to the investment firm Columbus Nova, ending a failed foray into the video game business. Analysts have long questioned the value of Rock Band for a company ...

  13. Kinect Sales Top 2.5 Million

    November 30, 2010 12:00 AM EST How popular is the new Kinect motion-based gaming system for Microsoft’s Xbox 360? In 25 days, it’s already sold 2.5 million, according to data it revealed today. Microsoft originally hoped to sell 3 million by the end of the year and 5 million by ...

  14. Updated: Viacom To Sell Gaming Unit Harmonix

    November 11, 2010 12:00 AM EST Updated: Harmonix released a statement today asserting that Viacom’s sale plans won’t have any affect on its operations. "This morning's announcement does not affect the ongoing work at the studio as we continue to support our existing f ...

  15. Keyboards Coming To Rock Band 3?

    May 25, 2010 12:00 AM EDT Are keyboard controllers coming to Rock Band 3? MTV and Harmonix released a two-song demo for the forthcoming “Green Day: Rock Band” on the Xbox Live Marketplace which among other things contained a teaser image for Rock Band 3 . That image showed ...

  16. Harmonix Reports Early Success For Rock Band Network

    May 21, 2010 12:00 AM EDT The Rock Band Network initiative is proving to be a hit with early adopters, according to developer Harmonix , a subsidiary of MTV Games . Speaking at Liverpool Sound City - a 4-day music and international business conference held annually in the ...

  17. Led Zep, Floyd, Eagles Make 'Rock Band' Poll

    May 17, 2010 12:00 AM EDT The "Green Day: Rock Band" videogame is not even out yet, and already the folks behind the franchise are looking for their next artist-focused title. MTV's videogame developer subsidiary Harmonix posted a poll on its developers foru ...

  18. MTV, Rock Band, T-Mobile Call On New Artists

    April 01, 2010 12:00 AM EDT MTV and Rock Band developers Harmonix are teaming up with T-Mobile to promote new artists across their respective media platforms through a new contest called "T-Mobile Artist-of-the-Month." Under the deal, artists will be able to submit ...

  19. 'Green Day: Rock Band' Release Date Set

    March 11, 2010 12:00 AM EST “Green Day: Rock Band,” MTV’s follow up to “The Beatles: Rock Band,” will be released June 8. It will be available on all game consoles, including the Xbox 360, PlayStation3 and Wii. Like the Beatles game, it will support three-part vocal harmonie ...

  20. Rock Band 3 Is Coming

    March 10, 2010 12:00 AM EST Rock Band 3 is coming. MTV Games and its development unit Harmonix hope to buck the trend of falling music game sales with the first non-artist-specific addition to the franchise in two years, expected to be released this holiday season. The compa ...

  21. Rock Band Network Music Store Opens

    March 04, 2010 12:00 AM EST The Rock Band Network Music Store is open for business. The initiative from MTV games and its "Rock Band" developer subsidiary Harmonix -- unveiled last July -- allows artists to submit their music as downloadable add-on content to the m ...

  22. Business Matters: Viacom, Mel Karmazin, Susan Boyle and More

    February 12, 2010 12:00 AM EST Business Matters is a daily column that offers insight, analysis and opinion on the day's news. Follow Billboard senior analyst Glenn Peoples on Twitter at twitter.com/billboardglenn . -- Viacom is seeking a refund on its 2008 earn-out paymen ...

  23. Viacom CEO: We Need To Pay Less For Music In Videogames

    February 12, 2010 12:00 AM EST During Viacom’s Q4 earnings call , on Thursday, Philippe Dauman, Viacmon’s president and CEO, pointed to lower rates paid to record labels as a part of a broader attempt to boost its struggling video games division. As we go forward, we are contin ...

  24. Briefs: Rock Band, Simpson, Brazilian Piracy Crackdown

    February 05, 2010 12:00 AM EST -- Harmonix, the MTV game development subsidiary responsible for the Rock Band franchise, has put in requests to license some very non-rock related music, sparking speculation the company may be expanding into hip-hop. The music licensing site Roy ...

  25. 'Rock Band' Network Now Open

    January 19, 2010 12:00 AM EST Any artist can now create downloadable content for the "Rock Band" music game franchise now that Harmonix has opened up the private beta for its Rock Band Network program to everyone. The Rock Band Network, announced last year , lets art ...

  26. 'Rock Band' Network Adds PS3 Support

    January 07, 2010 12:00 AM EST "Rock Band" developers Harmonix took a step closer to making the "Rock Band" Network Store a reality by issuing a patch for the PlayStation3 version of the game designed to support the additional music download store. The " ...

  27. Rock Band Songs Top 1,000 Mark

    November 25, 2009 12:00 AM EST Over 1,000 songs are now available for fans of the Rock Band franchise to buy and download to the game, according to MTV Games and Harmonix. More than 390 bands are contributing tracks to the service, which allows Rock Band gamers to browse and bu ...

  28. 'The Beatles: Rock Band' Going Fast

    September 17, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Sales of "The Beatles: Rock Band" have blown past expectations, so much so that Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman said one of the most expensive iterations of the video game might not be available to Christmas shoppers. The "Limited Editio ...

  29. 'The Beatles: Rock Band' Songs Unveiled

    August 18, 2009 12:00 AM EDT A list of 19 songs by the Beatles including classics "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" and "A Hard Day's Night" for a new "Rock Band" video game were revealed Tuesday, leaving only one mystery title remaining. Othe ...

  30. MTV To Launch New Track Upload Program For 'Rock Band'

    July 17, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Most recording artists would love to have their music available on MTV Networks' "Rock Band" videogame. But MTV's Harmonix unit, the developer of "Rock Band," simply hasn't had the time or staff to program the va ...

  31. Digital Briefs: Last.fm, 'Guitar Hero 5,' Crystal Method

    May 18, 2009 12:00 AM EDT -- Mobile music service mSpot has added content from CBS Radio and Last.fm to its streaming music channels it delivers for various wireless operators. mSpot's mobile application lets users stream participating radio channels through their pho ...

  32. Digital Briefs: RealNetworks, Gibson, Tap Tap Revenge 2

    March 03, 2009 12:00 AM EST - According to a 10K financial filing, RealNetworks spent $11.2 million to promote the Rhapsody service last year. - Gibson Guitars lost its lawsuit against Activision that claimed the "Guitar Hero" game infringed on its patents after a ...

  33. CES: 'Digital Music Live' Highlights

    January 08, 2009 12:00 AM EST While Billboard's editorial staff was busy producing the Digital Music Live conference at the CES show in Las Vegas, other press outlets covered the event in depth. Highlights include: - A conversation with Akon and UMG eLabs executive VP Rio ...

  34. Videogame Placements Set The Stage For Bang Camaro

    January 07, 2009 12:00 AM EST Boston, 2006: Bang Camaro, a band made up of people in other bands, plays its first hometown gig. Would the group's arena rock-filed in iTunes under "hair metal"-go over well in a basement party full of hipsters? "We were terri ...

  35. New Tunes For 'Rock Band' Series

    November 06, 2008 12:00 AM EST Harmonix, the MTV Networks subsidiary behind the "Rock Band" videogame franchise, is releasing an expansion pack of new songs for the original game and the recently launched "Rock Band 2" in time for the holiday sales cycle. Th ...

  36. The Beatles Take Video Game Plunge

    October 30, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Music from the Beatles is coming to videogames, but not to "Rock Band." MTV Networks and Harmonix, the game developer behind the popular "Rock Band" franchise, together with the Beatles' Apple Corps Ltd., are developing an ...

  37. Virtual World Gets Real Merch

    October 07, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Playing out your rock star fantasies just got a little easier. That's because the fake bands that people create in MTV's RockBand can now have real merchandise. Characters created in the game can now be posed against a variety of backgro ...

  38. Warner Music: Music Video Games Must Pay More

    August 08, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Warner Music Group, the world's third-largest music company, said on Thursday that video game makers will need to pay more to license songs for music-based video games like "Guitar Hero" and "Rock Band." Warner Music Chief ...

  39. New Guns N' Roses Song Heads To 'Rock Band'

    July 14, 2008 12:00 AM EDT After a letting in a few peeks under the covers here and there in recent weeks, MTV and Harmonix have completely unveiled their plans for "Rock Band 2." "Rock Band 2" will be an Xbox 360 exclusive at launch this September, with ...

  40. 'Rock Band 2' Slated For The Fall

    June 30, 2008 12:00 AM EDT The creators of "Rock Band" will release the game's sequel - "Rock Band 2" - this September, adding to a host of music-related videogames coming out in time for the holidays. Publisher MTV and developer Harmonix did not re ...

  41. 'Rock Revolution' Videogame Set For October

    May 16, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Rhythm game pioneer Konami -- the company behind the "Dance, Dance Revolution" franchise -- is going the "Rock Band" route with a new title called "Rock Revolution." Like the existing "Rock Band" game from M ...

  42. MTV Adds Album Downloads For 'Rock Band' Gamers

    April 18, 2008 12:00 AM EDT MTV Games will begin offering fans of the "Rock Band" music videogame full album downloads, which they can add to the game and play along. The first album will be Judas Priest's "Screaming for Vengeance" beginning April 22 ...

  43. 'Rock Band' For The Wii Set For Summer Launch

    March 24, 2008 12:00 AM EDT MTV and game unit Harmonix are bringing their popular "Rock Band" game to the Wii, starting June 22. Like its launch on other consoles, the game will be bundled with all instrument controllers-guitar, drums and microphones. However its l ...

  44. Gibson Sues Over 'Guitar Hero' And 'Rock Band'

    March 24, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Gibson Guitar said on Friday that it filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Viacom Inc's MTV networks, Harmonix and Electronic Arts relating to the wildly popular "Rock Band" video game and Harmonix's previously developed ...

  45. 'Guitar Hero' At Center Of Legal Clashes

    March 12, 2008 12:00 AM EDT Take a wildly popular videogame like Guitar Hero and it's only a matter of time before the lawsuits start to fly. In Guitar Hero's case, there are—or were—two. Gibson Guitar claims that Activision's Guitar Hero franchise violates a ...

  46. 'Rock Band' Beats 'Guitar Hero'

    December 10, 2007 12:00 AM EST While the sales numbers are not yet in, "Rock Band" championed over "Guitar Hero III" during Spike TV's 5th annual "Video Game Awards" show, broadcast over the weekend. Harmonix, the MTV-owned music game pioneer ...

  47. Harmonix, MTV Team For 'Rock' Songs

    November 15, 2007 12:00 AM EST Harmonix and MTV unveiled the first set of downloadable songs available for the upcoming "Rock Band" videogame. The game goes on sale Nov. 20 with a full playlist included. But from day one, users will immediately be able to download ext ...

  48. Little Steven To Lead 'Rock Band' Board

    July 11, 2007 12:00 AM EDT Developers of the upcoming Rock Band videogame have established a music advisory board to help the select the artists, albums and tracks to include in the game's soundtrack. "Little Steven" Van Zandt has been named the head of the a ...

  49. Fender Backs 'Rock Band' Videogame

    May 08, 2007 12:00 AM EDT Fender Musical Instruments has been named the exclusive provider of musical equipment for use in the upcoming music videogame Rock Band. The game's developers -- Harmonix and MTV -- have asked Fender to create a special game controller modele ...

  50. Guitar Hero Team Adds Partners For Rock Band

    April 02, 2007 12:00 AM EDT The developers behind hit interactive game "Guitar Hero" are launching a new franchise called "Rock Band" that targets virtual singers, bass players and drummers, as well as axemen. The game was created by Harmonix, a unit of V ...