Harmonix Employees Get Caught Posting Amazon Reviews For Rock Band 4

Harmonix Employees Get Caught Posting Amazon Reviews For Rock Band 4

In the cut-throat music industry, you've gotta do anything you can to stay ahead of the curve. So it is with the plastic music industry, too.

Perhaps that's why Harmonix employees have been posting a whole bunch of positive Amazon reviews for their own game, Rock Band 4, as discovered by Redditors last night. "Loving this game!" wrote one Harmonix staffer. "It brings back the core Rock Band gameplay experience we all know and love."

Some of them are hilarious to read with the knowledge that they're written by Harmonix employees, like this gem: "I'm excited that Harmonix is committed to the game as a platform, and can't wait to see what the team adds to the game in the months to come."

Harmonix sent us this statement about the whole snafu:

Harmonix has clarified its internal policy about posting reviews of our own products on retail sites, and we've asked that existing reviews be edited to identify Harmonix employees or be removed entirely. While we believe the reviews posted by a few employees were sincere and without ill intentions, as a studio we don't believe these are appropriate actions. We appreciate the feedback from the community, and take our relationship with our fans seriously.

This is the type of thing we assume happens all the time, of course — every single system that supports reader reviews is likely full of astroturfing and rating manipulation. It's just that usually the employees at least make fake accounts when they do it.

Our review of Rock Band 4, by the way, was written by Mike Fahey, who we're pretty sure is not a Harmonix employee.


    It's more sad than anything really. Also why are the employees buying the game from Amazon. Do they not get a free copy?

      You don't have to buy to review on Amazon I think

        A few of the reviews have 'verified purchase' meaning they bought it on Amazon.

      Sometimes you just want to help support a product your poured half your life into.

        Read those amazon reviews and realise they're biased = fail.
        If they had posted something like "We worked on xyz for this project and are so proud of how it turned out etc etc" = win.

        Funny thing, people don't like to be deceived.

    Didn't Jimi Hendrix first get radio-play because the record company bought all of his records from the stores, pushing the sales numbers up? Sounds like rock-n-roll to me.

      A lot of no name (and big name) ARIA chart bands do the same thing here.

    But how did the Harmonix employees rate Guitar Hero Live?

      And how do the Freestyle employees rate Rock Band? :P

    Apologies if this is only slightly on topic, but I was hoping to draw some attention to the current sad state of DLC offerings on the EU PSN store for RockBand 4. Very little of the DLC users have previously purchased for RB4 (for some users 1000+ items) is there; it is fully available in NA region, but not in EU (PAL). Harmonix/SCEE have not communicated what's going on. Harmonix forums have a few angry threads going, there's a 'change.org' petition, people talking about lawsuits etc.

    Would be great to see the media help keep these companies accountable.

    Last edited 23/10/15 10:54 am

    *facepalm* This has been a known marketing no-no for a while... maybe it's been too long since the last time people did it and got called out for it that young whippersnappers too young to have been around for that think they're coming up with a great new idea.

    At least the statement from Harmonix is pretty down to earth and sensible.

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