The deal allows Mad Catz to manufacture, market and sell wired and wireless bass guitars, a wired microphone and a drum kit bundled with "professional quality" wooden drumsticks. The new controllers are expected to begin shipping in the first half of 2008.
"This agreement with MTV Games represents a natural opportunity for Mad Catz to combine our core competencies of producing and distributing high-quality accessories with the entertaining experience of Rock Band's interactive controllers," said Mad Catz CEO Darren Richardson. "Mad Catz will produce premium instruments, allowing gamers and music fans to experience music in an entirely new light while taking on the personality of their favorite music idols."
Technical problems have plagued many of the guitar and drum controllers included with the initial Rock Band shipment, while their complexity led to numerous supply problems which has hampered the Canadian release of the game. A patch to allow Guitar Hero controllers to work with the game has been produced but remains unavailable, pending Activision's approval.
Founded in 1989 as Patch Ventures, the company took the name Mad Catz Interactive in 2001. It produces a wide range of peripherals for game consoles and PCs, including controllers, cables, joysticks and other devices.