Over the years developing company Harmonix has gone through a lot of publishers, and a lot of ups and downs, not only internally but most typically when it comes to the publishers and companies they outsource to design their peripherals and print their software.
Now, Mad Catz, formerly known exclusively for their work in peripherals has taken over the publishing rights to Rock Band 3, allegedly buying it out from the defunct MTV Games. With this they have also announced that they are going to pursue future software publishing opportunities. Quite an odd decision for a company that was once known for maybe some of the worst 3rd party accessories. However, due to higher quality control, and the encouragement of publishers like Capcom whom guided them through the process of creating “proper” arcade joysticks (their Tournament Edition is still as close as you’ll get to a Vewlix), it seems they have turned their reputation around. Or perhaps now they’re getting ambitious with the newly found company image?
Not only are they branching out as publisher for Rock Band 3, but they will be re-releasing the game this holiday season with their own in-house designed peripherals for the game. This will include the keyboard, Fender Mustang, and wireless Stratocaster accessories.
As for current Rock Band 3 owners, this doesn’t mean much of anything – The new bundles are (obviously) optional, but convenient for those of us whom have yet to pick up the game, or did not want to pay full price for Mad Catz’s peripherals. (The keyboard primarily being unavailable in a bundle until now.)