In June, Harmonix revealed its master plan for shaking up the sagging rhythm game genre, announcing that Rock Band 3 will incorporate a 25-key MIDI keyboard, designed by noted peripheral maker Mad Catz. To help get the keyboard into gamers hands, MTV Games and Mad Catz announced a $130 bundle that would include a copy of the game and the new peripheral--the only hardware-software package that will be released for Rock Band 3.
Unfortunately, PlayStation 3 gamers won't be given the option to purchase the Rock Band 3 keyboard bundle, in North America at least. In a post to its official message boards, Harmonix confirmed that the bundle will not be offered in the region, though European PS3 gamers will not be affected by the move.
PS3 gamers will still be able to pick up the keyboard, but they'll have to do so separately.
"You may have seen that retailers have taken down the Rock Band 3 keyboard/software bundle pre-orders for PlayStation 3," the developer wrote. "Unfortunately, this SKU will not be available in the US (including Canada and Mexico) due to the agreement terms for the region. However, Mad Catz and MTV Games are working with those retailers that accepted pre-orders to enable them, if they choose, to honor those pre-orders placed prior to this change as soft bundles (separate discs and keyboards), at pre-order pricing. These retailers will have more details shortly."
Harmonix did not elaborate on the "agreement terms" at issue in North America, and MTV Games had not responded to requests for comment as of press time. The studio did reiterate that PS3 gamers will still be able to purchase the PS3 edition of Rock Band 3 ($60) and the keyboard ($80) individually. Harmonix also noted that the Xbox 360 and Wii versions of the $130 bundle remain unaffected.
Rock Band 3 will be available for the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii on October 26. A separate DS edition will also be available on the same day.