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Monday, July 28 12:00 AM ET

Harmonix Releases Rock Band Roadie Expansion

By Brian Briggs

Harmonix Music Systems announced the release of the new Roadie Expansion for the popular Rock Band video game.

In Rock Band up to four players can play as a drummer, lead guitar, bass guitar or vocalist. The expansion pack allows two more players to join in as roadies for the band.

The Roadie Expansion addresses two of the biggest complaints from gamers by allowing more players to play at once, and making the game accessible for players without any rhythm.

"I can't imagine anyone who plays Rock Band would have more than five friends, so we should be covered for a while," said Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos.

Carl Drizer who frequently gets left out of the band when he and his friends play said, "I have no rhythm so it's hard for me to play an instrument, but I can still feel like I'm part of a band. I'm even thinking of letting my hair grow out some more and getting a 'Born to Ride' tattoo."

The roadie expansion kit introduces three new controllers spotlight, spare microphone and security mace.

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The spotlight must be pointed at the correct band member during solos which is detected by light sensors which attach to the instruments and microphone. For the spare microphone, the roadie must rush to replace a dead microphone of the vocalist in time or points are lost. The security mace, which doesn't actually shoot mace, is used to keep rowdy fans off the stage. The button on the mace must be pressed as the fans climb up on stage. At the end of a song the roadie must unplug all the instruments in an allotted amount of time as well.

"We think these new game elements will set the game apart from other games and really make the Rock Band experience more realistic," said Rigopulos. "Now we just need the FDA to approve our Groupie and Smack Dealer expansions, and it'll be total immersion in the experience for players."

The Roadie Expansion retails for $59.99 and is available now.


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