Red Octane writes to those with complaints about the guitar, "We have isolated this issue to two model numbers that can be found on the guitar's packaging. The numbers are 95065 and 95055. We are asking that customers who puchased [sic] their items from a retailer perform an exchange with that respective store (for a model number other than the defective two listed above). Customer's [sic] who purchased through our online story [sic] can complete an rma request for their defective item and we will exchange it for a fully function [sic] guitar controller. We do apologize for the inconvenience and will resole [sic] these matters."
Joystiq has been interviewing people all week trying to make sense of this entire issue as Red Octane is less than forthcoming with information. For example, here at Joystiq, we have a 95055 box, with a 95065 sticker placed over the UPC (originally 95055) and a 95065 guitar in the box - everything works fine so far (except star power activation is far less responsive than the PS2 guitar). Over at sister site Xbox 360 Fanboy, where they received a broken controller, they had a 95067 (that is not a typo) box with a 95065 guitar inside. At this point Red Octane acknowledges "defective" models as 95065 and 95055. If you have a defective model guitar, go ahead and return it with Red Octane's blessing.
[Thank you to everyone we've interviewed and those who sent in tips]