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Mad Catz signs Harmonix hardware deal

Peripheral company to make and distribute all official Rock Band controllers worldwide

Third party peripheral maker Mad Catz has signed a multi-year deal with music game developer Harmonix, to create all future accessories for the Rock Band franchise.

The agreement grants Mad Catz the international rights to produce and distribute Rock Band controllers wherever the game is sold, for all future iterations of the franchise - including the forthcoming Rock Band 3.

Rock Band is published by MTV Games and, despite rumours that the company was backing away from the franchise, distributed by EA.

A success in North America, the game has had significantly less impact in other regions due to delayed release dates, timed exclusivity deals on the Xbox and expensive and often hard to obtain hardware.

With the latest versions of some Rock Band 2 peripherals still not released in PAL regions, the Mad Catz deal may be intended to address this ongoing problem. Mad Catz has already produced a number of licensed add-ons, such as cymbal controllers for the official drum kit.

"Having worked with Harmonix and MTV Games over the past two years on peripherals for Rock Band and Rock Band 2, we are thrilled to take on an even more integral role with the Rock Band franchise," said Darren Richardson, president and CEO of Mad Catz.

"We are excited to be expanding our relationship with Mad Catz to continue to bring their video game peripheral design and manufacturing expertise to the Rock Band platform," said Alex Rigopulos, CEO of Harmonix.

"We look forward to partnering with Mad Catz to continue to innovate and lead the music game genre through the Rock Band franchise," he added.


David Jenkins