May 5, 2005
There’s a nice writeup of music-game-maker Harmonix, developer of FreQuency, Amplitude, and Eyetoy: AntiGrav, today in the Boston Phoenix. With the recent Karaoke Revolution 3, the company may be working towards one day pleasing even demanding machine-learning researchers/karaoke software developers such as Lawrence Saul. And with a realistic virtual bear costume included, who knows what other niche markets Harmonix may be embracing?
The article describes this hyperinstrumental Media Lab spin-off’s transformation into a rhythm-music game developer, a change-up inspired by the success of the genre in Japan. It also reveals that those lucky suckers have a S.T.U.N. Runner coin-op in the hall. The company’s support for their employee’s artistic endeavors is notable – “We don’t want to crush the people’s expression of musical passion that they have in their lives outside of Harmonix to make these games,” the CEO says – as is the company’s own innovative output. I know of the company via a friend, the uncrushed Dan Schmidt, who works there and also lives an additional sinister double life as a musician (fronting Honest Bob and the Factory-to-Dealer Incentives) and non-music game-maker (For a Change). So it must be true.