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Unformatted text preview: 1 C A S E S T U D I E S Little more than three years ago, you had probably never heard of Harmonix. In 2005, the video game de- sign studio released Guitar Hero, which subsequently became the fastest video game in history to top $1 bil- lion in North American sales. The game concept focuses around a plastic guitar-shaped controller. Players press colored buttons along the guitar neck to match a se- ries of dots that scroll down the TV in time with mu- sic from a famous rock tune, such as the Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Sedated” and Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water.” Players score points based on their accuracy. In November 2007, Harmonix released Rock Band, adding drums, vocals, and bass guitar options to the game. Rock Band has sold over 3.5 million units with a $169 price tag (most video games retail at $50 to $60). In 2006, Harmonix’s founders sold the company to Viacom for $175 million, maintaining their operational autonomy while providing them greater budgets for product devel- opment and licensing music for their games. Harmonix’s success, however, did not come overnight. The company was originally founded by Alex Rigopulos and Eran Egozy in 1995, focused around some demo software they had created in grad school and a company vision of providing a way for people with- out much musical training or talent to experience the joy of playing and creating music. The founders believed that if people had the opportunity to create their own music, they would jump at the chance. Their software, music, they would jump at the chance....
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This document was uploaded on 09/20/2011.
- Spring '08