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PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!


Harmonix Sold By Viacom, Buys Itself

by Rainier on Dec. 24, 2010 @ 1:24 a.m. PST

In Sept. 2006, Viacom's MTV Networks acquired Harmonix after it had been developing Guitar Hero titles for RedOctane for several years. Wanting to take the music game genre further Harmonix wanted to add more instruments and came up with Rock Band in late 2007. However a $299 million deficit in Nov. 2010 prompted Viacom to sell off Harmonix and last week investment firm Columbus Nova acquired the developer, in particular it's subsidiary, Harmonix-SBE Holdings. Unfortunatly some will not make the transition as Harmonix laid off 39 of its employees, primarily in the Q&A department.

Harmonix issued the following statement:

We’re happy to confirm the news today that the sale of the Harmonix Music Systems, Inc. by parent company Viacom is complete. We appreciate all of your support, comments and warm wishes in the preceding few weeks.

Viacom and MTV Networks have been an amazing home for us over the past 4 years. It’s where we launched both Rock Band and Dance Central, worked with The Beatles, Green Day, AC/DC, The Who and thousands of other artists. We want to take a moment to thank everyone in that organization who helped make these awesome games possible.

We’re excited to be returning to our roots as an independent and privately owned studio. As for what it means for you, the DLC schedule marches on for Rock Band, we will continue our support of previously released titles and we’re hard at work on some unannounced projects that we think you’re going to be pumped about.

Thanks for your continued support and stay tuned for more information here on, over @RockBand on Twitter and at

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