Activision Will Play Nice with Harmonix, for Money

Activision Will Play Nice with Harmonix, for Money

image

Following reports that it was blocking the release of a patch that would allow the use of Guitar Hero III controllers on the PlayStation 3 version of Rock Band, Activision has said that it is willing to discuss the matter if Harmonix is willing to write a check.

MTV and Harmonix claimed last week that the patch was in Sony's possession, but had been blocked from release by Activision. While Activision did not comment directly at the time, a representative from Guitar Hero 3 publisher RedOctane had expressed a lack of interest in such an arrangement in an earlier interview.

Activision spokeswoman Maryanne Lataif has now said her company is willing to negotiate an arrangement with Harmonix, but that the Rock Band developer is unwilling to meet their terms. "Unfortunately for Rock Band users, Harmonix has been unwilling to discuss an agreement that will allow us to provide that option in a manner that maintains the high standards people have come to expect from Activision," she told Boston.com, adding that any arrangement would hinge upon financial compensation. "We believe we should be compensated for the use of our technology," she said.

But Spencer Saltonstall of Harmonix said the company is trying to approach the matter based on what's best for its customers, and not the bottom line. "We are really and truly not looking at this from the financial standpoint," Saltonstall said. "We are looking at this from the consumer standpoint." And IDC analyst Billy Pidgeon said that while Activision may be entitled to payment for sharing their technology with Harmonix, the company's hard line could work against it in the long run by alienating gamers.

Permalink

Freaking right it alienates gamers! I find myself very displeased with Activision after hearing this latest development and I don't even own a PS3. They are shooting themselves in the foot. Haven't we learned anything from Microsoft?!

I knew Guitar Hero 3 was going to be a crappy game when I heard Harmonix was no longer developing it, I didn't realize it would also lead to my current distrust of anything Activision does.

Hear, hear. *toasts Namisar*

[quote=Malygris]
...that while Activision may be entitled to payment for sharing their technology...
[quote]

didn't Activision get that same said tech FROM Harmonix/RedOctane?

MrKeroChan:

Malygris:

...that while Activision may be entitled to payment for sharing their technology...

didn't Activision get that same said tech FROM Harmonix/RedOctane?

That's the funniest part of this whole business, Activision is acting like they're the one who did everything in making the controller what it is and how it works, but all the really did was copyright it.

All I can say is I'm glad I have a 360, so when I do buy Rock Band, I can use my GH controller out of the box, no begging publishers to be resonable and release the patch I need.

SatansBestBuddy:

MrKeroChan:

Malygris:

...that while Activision may be entitled to payment for sharing their technology...

didn't Activision get that same said tech FROM Harmonix/RedOctane?

That's the funniest part of this whole business, Activision is acting like they're the one who did everything in making the controller what it is and how it works, but all the really did was copyright it.

All I can say is I'm glad I have a 360, so when I do buy Rock Band, I can use my GH controller out of the box, no begging publishers to be resonable and release the patch I need.

At least until Activision realizes how hypocritical they're being between the 360 and the PS3 scenarios, and decides to rectify things by suing EA to stop using their technology without due compensation.

Wait, hey, let's take it a step back.

Activision was on board from Guitar Hero. That's the one without a number in the title. The only reason I know this for sure is because a friend of mine put in the old disc just yesterday.

So it kind of is their tech.

Kaisharga:
Wait, hey, let's take it a step back.

Activision was on board from Guitar Hero. That's the one without a number in the title. The only reason I know this for sure is because a friend of mine put in the old disc just yesterday.

So it kind of is their tech.

You must have been playing Guitar Hero II or Rocks the 80s. I took a cursory glance at the back of the boxes and Activision doesn't pop into the picture until the second iteration. The the third comapany involved in the original Guitar Hero was, unsurprisingly, MTV's interactive division. Even so, Activision was probably just a puplishing partner for II and 80s. Otherwise they never would have had to buy Red Octane, who were the owners of the series and the ones who made and held the patents on the controllers.

Getting away from the irrelevant, "Activision is a late comer to this series," arguements, I don't see why Activision/Red Octane wouldn't want to let their controller be compatible with Rock Band. It's a better controller, and Harmonix has all but said just that. Once they release individual guitars for sale they're going to find people buying Les Pauls for Rock Band. That's an amazing way to profit off of a competeing game an potentially draw the people who only own Rock Band to your series. I can only assume that Activision is trying to have their cake and eat it to. Sell controllers for Rock Band and have Harmonix kneel before them like Superman before Zod.

Kaisharga:
Wait, hey, let's take it a step back.

Activision was on board from Guitar Hero. That's the one without a number in the title. The only reason I know this for sure is because a friend of mine put in the old disc just yesterday.

So it kind of is their tech.

Let's be clear on this. Harmonix developed Guitar Hero, the IP and guitar "technology" belonged to RedOctane (who was "inspired" by Konami's own work)who also published the title. Activision bought RedOctane for the IP, MTV bought Harmonix for the talent/experience.

Activision may own the "tech," but people have been around this block over and over. I'm selling a new kind of fork with my pie! But you other pie makers have to pay me to make your pies compatible with my fork... Were EA/MTV/Harmonix infringing on their guitar peripheral patents in the making of the Rock Band guitar, then Activision would have a valid lawsuit, and it already would've happened by now. However, the engineers apparently did enough to make it different to avoid that lawsuit (which, I'm certain, disappointed Activision's suits to no end). Now they have an opportunity to exert non-litigious influence to get what they want out of EA, and they're doing it, but trying to hide it in the guise of looking at it from "the consumer standpoint." Give me a f***ing break.

Edit: Factual error corrected.

Whoo! Owners of a PS3 had to buy a new guitar for GH3, and now have to do it AGAIN for Rock Band! Fun times for your wallets! Seriously, Rock Band = -$$$$$$$$$$
Yeah, when I heard the PS2 guitars wouldn't work on PS3, I bought GH3 for Xbox 360, as that's what I had GH2 for.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here