Here's what it says in case anyone has a problem with the link
As we told you shortly after Harmonix announced Rock Band Network last July, a few companies have sprung up in the Rock Band community, offering to put people’s songs on RBN for a fee or a portion of the profits from music sales. TuneCore is one such organization, and they’re offering a limited-time discounted offer: a thousand bucks to get one song on RBN (the regular price is $2,500).
That may seem absurdly high to you, but think about it before you get up in arms. Authoring Rock Band tracks is quite an involved process that requires a significant amount of effort, as I detailed in my preview from August. And authoring companies will take care of all the steps along the way, which includes creating guitar, bass, vocal, and drum tracks on difficulties from Easy to Expert, as well as properly animating the in-game characters to make them look like they’re playing your song.
I spoke with Miguel Molinari, the founder of RockGamer Studios, another RBN authoring company. He offered an argument for the fairness of these prices:
The average track will take 40-60 man-hours just to finish the first pass on all tasks. After that, you have to submit the [song] for at least one playtest session before you submit it for [Microsoft’s XNA] peer review. By the time you’re done polishing the track and it’s published to the RBN store, you’ve easily spent 80-100 hours on it. Divide $2,000 by [80-]100 hours and you’re offering a highly skilled professional service for $20-$25/hr. Is that unreasonable?
Certainly, the tools to author Rock Band songs are available to everyone, and for a relatively low monetary investment: all you need is an XNA Creator’s Club account ($49 for 4 months or $99/year) and a digital audio workstation (there’s a Rock Band-customized version of a program called Reaper that costs $60). However, Molinari likened the process to Web design: theoretically, anyone can do it, but if you want something that’s of the best quality -- that is, a site that doesn’t look like it was built in 1999 on GeoCities (or in this case, a song that looks, sounds, and plays well) -- you’re better off leaving it to the pros.
In other words, $999 may actually be a pretty good bargain for bands on the cusp of success. Get on the deal while you can! Rock Band Network itself will be launching early this year.