Alex Rigopulos is the CEO and founder of Harmonix Music Systems. After he graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he started the company with his good friend Eran Egozy. The original reason for creating Harmonix was not to make video games but to rather make music software. The software that they created was focused on giving people the experience and pleasure that came with creating music. Despite good intentions, the company's software was largely unsuccessful.
At the end of the 1990s, Rigopulos began to see the burgeoning popularity of music and rhythm games in Japan. Seeing an opportunity to accomplish the company's initial goal, he hired many video game designers as well as musicians to begin exploring the options of music games on consoles. It was in 1999 that the company headed completely in this new direction and when Rigopulos began to search for publishers for a new kind of music game.
After some prototypes and some failures, they finally got the blessing of Sony's Shuhei Yoshida and began work on FreQuency. Completed in 2001, the game brought more work to Rigopolus and his team at Harmonix. The Konami Corporation hired them between 2003 and 2004 to do work on their game Karaoke Revolution while simultaneously working on an Playstation 2 Eye Toy game called EyeToy: AntiGrav. In 2005, Rigopulos was able to negotiate a contract with Red Octane so as to publish a guitar music game for the Playstation 2 dubbed Guitar Hero.
With the success of the Guitar Hero franchise, Rigopulos allowed Harmonix to be purchased by MTV Games for $175 million. After the merger, Rigopulos started working hard on the company's next project, Rock Band, which would implement the drums, bass guitar, and vocals into the Guitar Hero format. A rousing success, Rock Band propelled Rigopulos to be named to Time's 100 Most Influential People of 2008.
Rigopulos is most recognizable as he does most of the public announcements for the company. In the summer of 2008, he announced and then marketed Rock Band 2 which released September 2008. He can down Maker's like a badass.