Posted on July 10, 2008,

Konami Suing Viacom (and Harmonix) Over Rock Band

Just as soon as I get done complimenting them, a lawsuit pops up against Harmonix, MTV Networks, and parent company Viacom. Konami is suing the makers of Rock Band over what it alleges to be patent violations by the ultra-popular rhythm game.

Konami’s patents were filed in 2002 and 2003 and relate to simulated musical instruments and a “musical-rhythm matching game,” reports Bloomberg.

The wording of that makes me think it’s only a matter of time before Activision and Sony face similar lawsuits, as both Guitar Hero and SingStar match those descriptions pretty fully. And quite a lot of other games, for that matter.

Konami is apparently seeking both cash considerations and an order to block Harmonix from using the various instruments. The suit was filed yesterday in Marshall, Texas, but Viacom spokesperson Kelly McAndrew claimed the company hadn’t received any complaint, and thusly had no comment.

It’s worth noting that Konami is scheduled to release Rock Revolution later this year. The company originally released GuitarFreaks and DrumMania back in 1999, the former of which is considered to be the precursor to Guitar Hero (and, by extension, Rock Band). They never brought those series over to the Unites States, a fact which you can bet Konami shareholders cry themselves to sleep over every time they see the money that Guitar Hero and Rock Band have brought in.

We’ll have more on this story as it develops. With the release of Rock Band 2 just two months away (on Xbox 360), Harmonix will have to move swiftly on this.

Thanks to MTV Multiplayer‘s Patrick Klepek for pointing this story out.

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9 Comments on Konami Suing Viacom (and Harmonix) Over Rock Band

Davn Kincade

On July 10, 2008 at 9:56 pm


Here we go again :neutral:


On July 11, 2008 at 12:28 am

No seriously all the people I know who play Rock Band and GH are a bunch of emo’s, posers or stuck up jerks.

They don’t even know about any of the songs before they play the game, then they think they know everything about the band and if you ask them what other songs they like by said band, they have no clue.


On July 11, 2008 at 12:53 am


You really should consider opening you closed ass mind before speaking gibberish, seriously man.
“No seriously all the people I know who play Rock Band and GH are a bunch of emo’s, posers or stuck up jerks.” Well that’s for you, everyone I’ve met/known are actually opposite of that.


On July 11, 2008 at 1:12 am

How am I supposed to open my closed ass mind when the latter is all I have ever been exposed to? You want me to move to your neck of the woods just so I can like the type of people that play these games?


On July 11, 2008 at 3:50 am

Well, Guitar Hero HAS OFFICIALLY ACQUIRED THE PATENT. Activision can use it!


On July 11, 2008 at 4:29 am

Why so much fuss over a stupid game where all you do is hitting buttons at the right time? Just the sound of it makes me wanna kill myself in boredom!


On July 11, 2008 at 6:23 am

Seems like a kick and scream because some other companies making money.
And until idiots realize THE DRUMS ARE NOTHING LIKE REAL LIFE EVEN ON EXPERT this crap will keep on being produced.


On July 11, 2008 at 11:43 am

Yow. I can only imagine what’ll happen if this goes to court. The only issue is that Konami would potentially be at fault for not defending their patent previously. So who knows which way it’ll go. It will be ugly regardless that’s for sure.

serioulsy guys

On July 13, 2008 at 11:21 am

ya well i say, viacom and mtv can and should get sued up the wazzoo, them and EA. they are all evil out for the golden dollar. these companies and organizations would totally sacrifice a 1000 virgins to the lord of chaos if it meant brining in mo dolla. grumble grumble grumble, game blows ass anywho, go play a real instrument for some right brain exercise, and put those fast fingers to good use.