The Launch Center is a website on Game Spot’s site that’s dedicated to the game. It’s a limited deal though – site visitors are simply being enable to preview the over 50 songs that will be included within the game when it ships in mid-September.
Best hear a word or two from Last.fm’s co-founder, Martin Stiksel, who said, “This is truly an excellent combination. Last.fm is about bringing great music to music fans and Rock Band is about music fans playing the music they love. Rock Band fans can ‘preview’ their skills while listening to songs from the game when they visit the launch center at GameSpot – utterly brilliant.”
And there’s more – once the game ships, GameSpot will update the playlist with new songs from Rock Band 2’s weekly downloadable selection. The Rock Band 2 playlist will also always be accessible on Last.fm through GameSpot’s account (GameSpot at Last.fm).
That’s the story, time to get to the marketing – according to the press release announcing the scheme, “Since the July re-launch showcasing a new design and features, Last.fm has experienced a 20 per cent increase in unique visitors and a 36 per cent increase in total minutes spent on the site, according to the latest comScore Media Metrix report (July 2008, U.S. Data).”
As a rider to all this “Hey, let’s play a fake guitar and listen to songs from artists included in the game we’re obsessing with right now (and how come you can pick up a real guitar for the same price as the game, who needs music in schools?)”, Last.fm and GameSpot both belong to CBS Interactive, meaning what the big picture here is a switched-on media company experimenting with trans-brand support using available technologies (and maximising the value of its streaming license, I guess).