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Where is the Asian Xbox 360 version of Rock Band?


Rock Band is published by Electronic Arts. That company puts region locking on all their Xbox 360 games, probably to ensure that their global distributors get an even share of revenues. Because of this, we aren't able to buy Rock Band for the Xbox 360 because our 360 is an Asian version console (only NTSC-J games work on it, or Region-free games). Rock Band is already available locally in Data Blitz stores here in the Philippines; we just can't buy it because it won't work on our 360. =(

We're actually considering buying a Playstation 3 just for Rock Band, because the PS3 doesn't have any region locking built in (so it will play games from any region, apparently). The only time I ever got to try this game was during Pinoyxbox's Grand EB last year. It's a great game; it's just unfortunate that it's in the hands of such an evil publisher. (google "Take Two Interactive EA Hostile Takeover" and you'll see what I mean)

It's really really unfortunate that nothing (as in, NOTHING) has been announced regarding an official Xbox 360 Asian release for Rock Band. Maybe there's the occasional forum post or best guess about when it's coming out (June? Really? Last I checked they said March, then it became April, then .... then.... )

Whoever's running the show for Microsoft in Asia is falling asleep at the wheel, it seems. This is a lost opportunity for them, because while we're seriously pondering buying a PS3 because of this reason, there are likely more people out there (in the Asian region) who are getting a PS3 over an Xbox 360 because they can't buy Rock Band on the 360 here. It's almost as if Rock Band here in Asia is practically Playstation-exclusive because anyone can just get the US import version of Rock Band for the PS3 and have it work on their Asian PS3 systems.

I've read all the reasons of Microsoft for implementing region-locking in their game console. I think it all boils down to them preventing themselves by getting sued by some money-hungry publisher (any opportunity to get money out of a 330BN-dollar corporation is a good opportunity, apparently). But I don't understand how Sony can get away with it. I think Sony just said 'Screw the risk, we're getting beaten six ways to Sunday here' and made their system region free despite possible complaints from publishers. And surprisingly, publishers don't seem to mind at all.

I do notice that Playstation 3 game prices are higher than Xbox 360 prices---perhaps that's the only downside to completely region-free games. But when one region can get a great game like Rock Band and the rest of the world is 'technically' deprived of it (I say technically because, like my situation, the game's already here, via imports; it just won't work on my system!), I just think it's a little frustrating.

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