Rock Band

  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. Business Matters: 'Rock Band' Downloads to End in April

    February 19, 2013 9:10 PM EST Video game developer Harmonix has announced that it will stop releasing track downloads for the game "Rock Band" in the first week of April. The company has released more than 4,000 songs over 275 consecutive weeks -- in five years -- a ...

  3. 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 ...

  4. 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 ...

  5. 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 ...

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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 ...

  8. 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 ...

  9. 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 ...

  10. 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 ...

  11. 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 ...

  12. 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 ...

  13. 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 ...

  14. Queen Version of 'Guitar Hero' Coming

    June 25, 2010 12:00 AM EDT Queen guitarist Brian May confirmed to a Swedish news site that there will be a Queen-branded version of "Guitar Hero" coming out next year. Queen has been quite prolific on the videogame front. It’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” is featured on bo ...

  15. 'Rock Band 3': Keyboard Confirmed

    June 10, 2010 12:00 AM EDT The rumored keyboard controller for "Rock Band 3" is real. USA Today got the scoop , confirming the 25-key instrument will focus on the same five colored keys that correspond with on-screen prompts just like other instruments. Those othe ...

  16. A Look At The Next Wave Of Music-Based Videogames

    June 08, 2010 12:00 AM EDT The music game genre is not dead. While Activision may have scaled back it’s "Guitar Hero" strategy (mercifully so, say some), a number of smaller developers are coming out with a new twist on the category that leans heavily on teaching ...

  17. 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 ...

  18. 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 ...

  19. 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 ...

  20. 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 ...

  21. '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 ...

  22. 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 ...

  23. 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 ...

  24. BETTER KNOW A PANELIST: MTV Gaming Exec Paul DeGooyer

    February 23, 2010 12:00 AM EST Name: Paul DeGooyer Title: MTV Network’s senior VP of electronic games and music Panel: Digital Now (Thurs. March 4, 11:40 am - 12:25 pm). More info at Billboardevents.com . At this moment, what most worries you about the music business? What most ...

  25. Update: Hendrix 'Rock Band' Coming In 2010?

    February 16, 2010 12:00 AM EST Update: MTV got back to Billboard.biz with an official statement: “While we have not made any official announcements regarding Jimi Hendrix and Rock Band, we are excited to say that we are in discussions to bring his music to our platform. Stay tu ...

  26. 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 ...

  27. 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 ...

  28. 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 ...

  29. '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 ...

  30. TuneCore Rocks Out with Rock Band

    January 19, 2010 12:00 AM EST Digital distribution service TuneCore has added the Rock Band Network to the list of digital retailers it supports as part of a new offer that also includes development assistance for bands interested in getting their music in the game. The Rock B ...

  31. '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 " ...

  32. Briefs: Harmonix, Guvera, Wisin & Yandel

    December 10, 2009 12:00 AM EST -- Harmonix, developers of “The Beatles: Rock Band” and the entire “Rock Band” franchise, has cut 39 staffers, the company confirmed today. The Cambridge, Mass.-based company is a subsidiary of MTV Games. The result is a 13% staff reduction. Accor ...

  33. 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 ...

  34. Placebo To Give Away MP3 Bundle

    October 23, 2009 12:00 AM EDT U.K.-based alt-rock band Placebo is giving away a free tour bundle download to accompany the band's current European winter tour. The bundle is available to download immediately and features a live version of "Breathe Underwater" -- ...

  35. Hot Music Game Titles Power September Sales, Revenue

    October 19, 2009 12:00 AM EDT The music game genre experienced a much-needed lift in September on the backs of new releases “The Beatles: Rock Band” and “Guitar Hero 5.” MTV’s Beatles game, released Sept. 9, won the battle with total unit sales of 595,000, according to the NPD ...

  36. Digital Briefs: Microsoft, Xbox Live, iPhone

    October 19, 2009 12:00 AM EDT -- Microsoft will add a special section to its Xbox Live Marketplace dedicated exclusively to the purchase of downloadable music for such music-based games as "Rock Band," "Guitar Hero," and other rhythm-based titles. Gamers wi ...

  37. Kiss: The Hottest Brand In The Land

    September 29, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Kiss realized the power of merch from day one. At an industry coming-out party before they even had a record deal, band members made their own Kiss glitter T-shirts and made sure their female fans were wearing them in the front row. Today, Kiss co ...

  38. '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 ...

  39. Will The Beatles Make It To The Rock Gaming Hall Of Fame?

    September 15, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Few can question the legacy The Beatles left on the music world in the 20th century, but will millennial video gamers (most born long after the band’s split 40 years ago) be abuzz with Beatlemania? Looking at Nielsen’s Video Game Tracking data 3 m ...

  40. 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 ...

  41. Billboard Q&A: Tapulous Co-Founder Bart Decrem

    June 16, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Apple's iPhone and App Store have spawned a veritable industry of mobile application developers. And while many startup companies are panning for gold, Tapulous, the developer behind Tap Tap Revenge, has a record of consistent success. Tap Ta ...

  42. Video From E3: 'DJ Hero,' 'The Beatles: Rock Band'

    June 08, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Billboard takes an in-depth look at the growing partnership between the video game and music industries at this year's E3 gaming expo. "Brutal Legend,” “DJ Hero” and “The Beatles: Rock Band” are among the games featured as well as interv ...

  43. 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 ...

  44. Digital Briefs: Mobile Streams, Rock Band

    May 05, 2009 12:00 AM EDT -- Mobile content provider Mobile Streams launched a version of its direct-to consumer online ringtone store in the U.S. Ringtones.com has more than 20,000 ringtones for sale, which mobile users can buy online and have sent to their mobile phones, ...

  45. 'The Beatles: Rock Band' European Pricing Set

    April 16, 2009 12:00 AM EDT The developers behind the pending "The Beatles: Rock Band" game leaked a few more drops of information about the title Thursday (April 16), specifically pertaining to the limited edition premium bundle. In addition to the core game, the ...

  46. Guns N' Roses Brings 'Democracy' to 'Rock Band'

    April 10, 2009 12:00 AM EDT Axl Rose may have spent 15 years fine tuning the 14 tracks on "Chinese Democracy," but it only took five months for the entire album to make its way into the "Rock Band" video game franchise. "Chinese Democracy" will ...

  47. Report: 'Rock Band' Passes $1 Billion

    March 26, 2009 12:00 AM EDT The Rock Band franchise has passed $1 billion in retail sales, according to the NPD Group. That includes the combination of the game software and the instrument controllers needed to play it. In addition, MTV says Rock Band owners have purchased m ...

  48. 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 ...

  49. MTV Games, Warner: No 'Rock Band' Boycott Of WMG Artists

    March 02, 2009 12:00 AM EST MTV Games is not boycotting Warner Music Group artists from the “Rock Band” franchise, despite what an article in the current Wired magazine claims, according to sources from both camps. Rather, the impasse is best described as a stalemate. WMG CE ...

  50. Digital Briefs: Sony, YouTube, 'Rock Band' Suit, Shazam

    February 13, 2009 12:00 AM EST - Sony Music Entertainment has finalized a new licensing deal with YouTube, although no formal announcement has been made. The All Things D blog initially reported the deal, which Billboard has since confirmed. Details include an upfront payment t ...

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