Harmonix wants you to invest or support their Rock Band 4 venture on the PC platform, asking for $1.5 million over the course of 35 days.
Harmonix are in a bit of a dire situation, as of late. The Rock Band 4 publisher, Mad Catz, have recently fired a sizeable number of their employees, putting the future development of their musical rhythm game into jeopardy in the long run. Fortunately, they still have good will and gumption, enough to release a crowdfunding campaign on Fig, aiming to raise $1.5 million in investments and pledges leading up to April 5th.
They are aiming for a Fall 2016 release of Rock Band 4 on PC, utilizing the Steam Workshop to bring back Rock Band Network. Bands and artists can release their songs through the platform for public consumption, letting them earn some extra cash. The plan is to use the money raised (plus $500,000 from Harmonix, themselves) to partner with Sumo Digital, who will be developing and supporting the PC release pre and post-launch.
There are multiple backing tiers, ranging from $10 to $25,000. It starts out simple, with $10 getting you a Thank You and access to commenting on the Fig page, $20 gets you a Steam copy of A City Sleeps and some Indie Game songs and $49 netting you a copy of the game on Steam with 30 extra songs. It gets crazy near the end, as 10 people can get the “opportunity” to get their song in Rock Band 4 PC, party with Harmonix VIP at PAX East 2016, own a Rock Band 4 t-shirt, get a credit in the game, chat with the developers, rock a swag bag and grab the rest of the aforementioned items.
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Unfortunately, though, this seems to be a last-ditch effort from Harmonix to save the Rock Band brand before its inevitable crash. With instruments that cost triple digits, bundles that break the halfway point in total console prices and a lack of support for PC right up until the most dire situations, it all seems like it’s too little, too late. I still play Rock Band 4 every other week, but the dozens of us that do so aren’t going to keep the project afloat. Harmonix might get there with some heavy investment help, but for how long it will go further remains to be seen.