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Thread: Interview With Guitar Hero & Rock Band Creators

  1. #1
    m00tini! wootini's Avatar
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    Interview With Guitar Hero & Rock Band Creators



    Next week, video game developer Harmonix will launch the wildly anticipated The Beatles: Rock Band, uniting one of the most popular video game franchises ever made with history's biggest rock band.

    But it wasn't so long ago that Harmonix' founders -- Alex Rigopulos and Eran Egozy, two computer-tinkering hobbyists drawn together by a shared love of music -- were disillusioned upstarts running a struggling company. The two recently sat down with CNNMoney in their Cambridge office to talk about their bumpy road to success and how they almost failed -- twice.

    Then, after you graduated in 1995, you launched Harmonix.

    ERAN: We raised an initial round of capital from friends and family, meager by today's standards -- $100,000 -- but it lasted us a whole year because I was still living like a grad student.

    ALEX: And I was living in my parents' house.

    ERAN: Somewhat selfishly, we just wanted to keep working on the cool things we were doing at the media lab. Our revenue was pretty much zero for five years.

    So was your big hit, Guitar Hero, an evolution of all these games?

    ALEX: In a sense, yes, but there was one non-music game that we should mention. It was the EyeToy: AntiGrav, developed for Sony. It turned out to be the worst-reviewed game from a critical review standpoint, yet it sold four times as well as Frequency and Amplitude.

    We got really gloomy. We started to wonder if everything we were trying to do was just a fool's errand. When it came to making music games, we couldn't make any money or even a return for our investors. We were paying the bills, but to go on with the business would have been a departure from the founding premise of the company. It would have been an emotionally and psychologically crushing defeat.

    However, right around that time we were contacted by RedOctane, a small company that had some experience with peripherals. They said, 'Hey, we love your games. If we make a guitar controller, will you make the guitar game?'

    ERAN: And we said, 'You betcha!' Although back then, peripherals and music games were both niche markets.

    ALEX: It was like, how is this going to work?

    ERAN: We did it because the concept was just so compelling. It was the game we had always wanted to make.
    For anyone interested in either of these games and how they got started, check out the interview. It's full of cool insider story lines on how two relatively normal and broke young folks turned their passion into a printing press for money. They failed many times on the way to success and the interview talks a a bit about how they almost didn't go on, and how they persevered.

    Link - Money

  2. #2
    west philadelphia born n raised ech0's Avatar
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    My sister actually met and clubbed with the co-creator of Guitar Hero this summer in Barcelona. She said he was loaded and dropping like $1000 at a time on drinks for the bachelor party he was with and my sister and her roommates in the VIP section of Opium, the largest club in Barcelona.

    teh r!g

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  3. #3
    BadDog K_Dog's Avatar
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    I really dig these kind of stories. Rags to riches from perseverance and hard work.

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