During last year's E3 Media and Business Summit, MTV Games and Activision unleashed increasingly impressive riffs to explode the eardrums of those about to rock with plastic instruments. From the Harmonix-developed Rock Band stage, the former Guitar Hero developer said it was in the process of bringing full album downloads to its new rhythm game, with The Who's 1971 classic rock radio staple album Who's Next to play the opening act.
Nearly a year on, Who's Next has yet to find its way onto Rock Band's online storefront. It now appears that will be the case indefinitely. As part of this morning's announcement for Rock Band 2, Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos told the Associated Press that The Who's much-acclaimed album will not be available in full as Rock Band DLC, because "we were unable to locate all the masters."
As consolation to some, and perhaps good news to others, Rigopulos said that instead of Who's Next, Harmonix has teamed with Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey to create a 12-song best-of compilation pack of master recordings that they were able to track down. The Who compilation will be released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 editions of the game on July 15, with songs priced at $1.99 individually and $19.99 for the complete set.
While Harmonix did not reveal the entire contents of the best-of pack, the AP's report did mention "My Generation" and "Who Are You," respectively from the 1965 and 1978 albums of the same names. As revealed earlier today, songs downloaded for the original Rock Band will be fully compatible with the just-announced sequel, due to arrive first on the Xbox 360 in North America this September.
[UPDATE] Today, MTV Games and Harmonix officially announced The Best of The Who: Rock Band Edition, aka The Who 12 Pack. As previously noted, The Who 12 Pack will arrive for both Xbox Live and the PSN on Tuesday, July 15.
The Who 12 Pack is listed below.
"Behind Blue Eyes"
"My Generation" (Live at Leeds)
"Real Good Looking Boy"
"Sea & Sand"
"Summertime Blues" (Live at Leeds)
"Who Are You"
"Young Man Blues" (Live at Leeds)