Standalone Rock Band instruments release date announced

About a week ago I finally went out and bought Guitar Hero 3, a lack of cash to drop on a full Rock Band suite and impatience getting the better of me.  While I’ve enjoyed my week of rocking out in the privacy of my own home, I still couldn’t help purpling the air with oaths at my own impulsive purchasing when I read the news that Rock Band peripherals will be available on February 12th.

Still, this is the moment many of us have been waiting for since before Rock Band was even released, and finally Harmonix and EA have made good on their promise to make standalone instruments available for purchase.  In addition to individual instruments, a wireless Stratocaster guitar controller is being released and will retail for about $60 while a drum kit will cost about $80. While not listed in the press release (viewable after the jump) GameStop currently has microphones listed for about $40 with a release date of April 4th.

The release date of Rock Band instruments is pretty close to Valentines Day you romantic rockers you; maybe in lieu of cliched chocolate or roses you can surprise your gamer guy or gal with the gift of rock.

MTV GAMES, HARMONIX AND EA CONFIRM PLANS TO SHIP STANDALONE /ROCK
BAND/™ INSTRUMENTS TO U.S. RETAIL STORES

Music Fans and Gamers Prepare to Expand the Band, Rock the World

*CAMBRIDGE, MA – January 24, 2008*– *Harmonix*, one of
the world’s leading developers of music-based games, and *MTV
Games*, part of Viacom’s MTV Networks (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B), along
with distribution partner *Electronic Arts Inc.* (NASDAQ: ERTS),
announced today that individual instrument peripherals for *Rock
Band**™* will start shipping to U.S. store shelves beginning on
February 12th.

“The release of standalone instruments allows *Rock Band
*musicians to enjoy the full *Rock Band *experience, including drum,
microphone and guitar head-to-head modes, creating a whole new level
of competitive fun,” said Alex Rigopulos, CEO and co-founder,
Harmonix. “We’re also delivering a stand-alone wireless
guitar solution for all versions of *Rock Band* as well as providing
the opportunity for consumers to build their band one instrument at a
time.”

With standalone instrument peripherals being made available, players
have the opportunity to expand the full Rock Bandexperience by
competing in challenging play modes such as Microphone vs. Microphone,
Drum vs. Drum and Guitar vs. Guitar. With instrument
“versus” modes, gamers can battle against each other in
“Score Duel” mode for the high score or in the challenging
“Tug-O-War” mode, where giving the best performance is
key. These exciting “versus” modes can be played locally
or online and work with all *Rock Band* downloaded song tracks. In
order to play downloadable content for head-to-head matches all
players must own the same downloadable track. In addition, gamers can
buy a new wireless standalone guitar to round out their Rock Band
Special Edition Bundle or choose to build their band piece by piece
through the purchase of individual software and instruments.

*Rock Band** Instrument Release Dates/Pricing**:*
· *Rock Band *Drum Kit (Xbox 360® video game and
entertainment system from Microsoft, PLAYSTATION®3 computer
entertainment system, PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system)
$79.99 MSRP; February 12, 2008
· *Rock Band* Wireless Fender® Stratocaster Guitar
Controller (Xbox 360, PLAYSTATION 3 system, PlayStation 2 system*)
$59.99 MSRP; April 1, 2008

Standalone */Rock Band/* game software is currently available, as
well as the */Rock Band/* *Special Edition Bundle* featuring a Fender
Stratocaster guitar controller, an electronic drum kit, real drum
sticks, a microphone and software. The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 2
system bundles also come with a USB hub for easy plug-in access for
all instruments.

*/Rock Band/* is rated “T” for Teen (lyrics, mild
suggestive themes) by the ESRB.

Electronic Arts is the exclusive distribution and marketing partner
for */Rock Band/*.

*/* Note: The Rock Band PlayStation guitar and drums work for both
PlayStation 2 and PLAYSTATION 3 systems./*

For more information on */Rock Band /*and Harmonix Music Systems,
please visit www.rockband.com <https://www.rockband.com/> and
www.harmonixmusic.com <https://www.harmonixmusic.com/>.

Qais Fulton