Konami drops Rock Band lawsuit

Rock Revolution maker settles out of court with Harmonix parent Viacom in legal action stemming from rhythm game patents.

In 1999, Konami launched the DrumMania and Guitar Freaks series, some of the first rhythm games to use instrument peripherals. Some 10 years later, the Japanese publisher sued Viacom, parent company of Harmonix, claiming the developer infringed on several drum and guitar peripheral patents in its Rock Band line of games.

Konami's instrument peripheral suit will no longer be an obstacle to Rock Band 3's release.

Today, the Bloomberg news service reports that the two companies have settled their differences out of court. The financial particulars of the deal were not made public, but they were sufficient enough to have Konami drop "all claims and counterclaims" against Viacom in the Tyler, Texas-filed suit. The decision also saw Viacom drop its countersuit against Konami, which was filed in Boston.

The Viacom-Konami settlement comes just one month before Rock Band 3 hits the US market. The game will be the first in the series to introduce keyboards to the franchise's instrumental mix, which had previously included only drums, guitar, bass, and vocals. The game will feature a bevy of artists from a variety of genres, including pop-rock group Tokio Hotel and reggae icon Bob Marley.

Rock Band 3 is due out October 26 in North America and October 29 in Europe on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, and DS. For more on Rock Band, check out GameSpot's preview.

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37 comments
MichaelChainsaw
MichaelChainsaw

oh! and you can learn any song... instead of what they put on RB3.

MichaelChainsaw
MichaelChainsaw

People wanting to learn the guitar. Save your money. Get the program called Tab pro... it basically the same thing.. but easier to learn.

kennythomas26
kennythomas26

I did not even know their was a lawsuit going on, guess it was not that big of a deal.

nintendoboy16
nintendoboy16

You know, I completely forgot about this suit. Maybe I had some bad fanboyisms in me back then between who's better than who (Konami vs Harmonix), but MAN, I forgot this case happened. :?

PixelAddict
PixelAddict

It's good the plastic instrument war has quieted... for now. A lot of good lives were lost. And at least one person paid attention.

Jebril
Jebril

They didn't chill out, they got paid...lol.

Tha_DRP
Tha_DRP

I heard about this along time ago, cool that they finally chilled out...

shani_boy101
shani_boy101

First time i've heard of this, but if Konami wanted to sue the makers of a popular rhythm game they should have at least continued to support the genre and expand their franchises instead of doing nothing. On a side note i just found out that Rock Band 3 isn't going to launch with the Squier strat (real guitar) and it's coming out later in the year, quite dissapointed. I wanted to start learning a real guitar earlier.

Miroku_of_Nite1
Miroku_of_Nite1

Well if Konami marketed Guitar Freaks and DrumMania in the US when they first came out then maybe they could have locked the market down. But I must admit. I like how Guitar Hero/Rock Band does the note highway.

Hizakii
Hizakii

luffy11234 you've never played guitar or drumfreaks, maybe because its a music game but with songs in japanese by probably obscure japanese bands to american arcade patrons, could be the reason. I know players who play rockband beatles because they, well, like The Beatles but not THAT many who waits for the next guitarfreaks just because of a new song by a listed band called Bump Of Chicken in guitarfreaks. Could be a plausible reason

demonkingx5
demonkingx5

Konami just butt hurt no 1 bought their lame rock game

Pete5506
Pete5506

This is new to me, but rock band is the better game

hippiesanta
hippiesanta

will it sell if Dance-Dance Revolution featuring Solid Snake, Roy campbell, psycho manthis and Otacon dancing? or atn least in MGS4 Subsistence -----with the song.....aiyah-yiah your my little butterfly

RickyRevolver
RickyRevolver

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

starbright_2012
starbright_2012

Sounds like Konami waited this lawsuit out until Hamonix became big enough to ensure a nice sized pay day. Smart...totally uncool...but smart

redskinStu
redskinStu

When's the sequel for Rock Revolution coming out? Or did they learn their lesson?

Cheesethrower
Cheesethrower

Band that should never be used to highlight a good song list: Tokio Hotel

MKID232
MKID232

I'm serious. This is the first I heard of this suit, so I have no idea what it was about.

zyxahn
zyxahn

What they should do is get some more Beatles music for the their game already >_

Supperdude9
Supperdude9

dubel, maybe they should put together a collection of the Silent Hill games into one disc. That would be EPIC, and it would easily sell a million copies.

okassar
okassar

What happened to Konami, the used to be like Pwnami and now they're getting jealous of other developers besting them where the should have excelled

dubel_07
dubel_07

Konami should stop wasting money on lawsuits that they won't win and start spending more time on making a Silent Hill game that was as good as the second one :)

MKID232
MKID232

What was the suit about?

BattleSword1
BattleSword1

I love seeing other developers unsuccessfully try and replicate a popular game. So entertaining.

g1rldraco7
g1rldraco7

It's just weird how a game could have so many names before settling on one that's fits.

fetusfart18
fetusfart18

@cjasko94, that's because the game absolutely awful lol And @parhar67, you've got it pretty much right. But the arcade game Konami released was call Guitar Freaks. Rock Revolution just came out not too long ago.

luffy11234
luffy11234

Intresting. I never heard of DrumMania or Guitar Freaks in america, and i read it i know it didnt show up in america. Konamis fault all the way.

cjasko94
cjasko94

I see that Rock Revolution everywhere with the drums and everything for like 5 bucks

parhar67
parhar67

hesoyamdon Konami made a arcade game called rock revoloution in the late 90's and released it to arcades. They started off with guitars i believe and then created a drum one as well. Then they would allow you to play both machines at the same time as a co op game in the arcade. They are suing harmonix because harmonix pratically used the same peripherals to create rock band. If you go to google images and type rock revolution arcade and search images you will see the arcade machines that have been around since the late 90's I personally think its stupid i mean konami had more than enough years to release a home version of it. I guess they thought it would never be big so viacom and harmonix did it instead.

stakex007
stakex007

@hesoyamdon - Why not actually read the article? The very first paragraph tells you exactlly what the lawsuit is about.

Kleeyook
Kleeyook

Well, if they patent Rock Band and Guitar Heroes peripherals that prevent other games to use then Harmonix is quite a dictator. I don't know the details though. :(